This will be the 149th running of the Belmont Stakes. We have 12 horses racing in the field today, and 6 of those 12 have raced in the Kentucky Derby, and only 1 of those horses have raced in the Preaknees, 5-1 Lookin At Lee. Lookin At Lee will be the only horse to have raced in all three legs of the Triple Crown. In the last 6 years, there has been 5 horses that raced in the Kentucky Derby that also won the Belmont, and 3 of those horses that won skipped the Preakness.
This chart below tells you the average time per distance a horse should run. The chart provides a great benchmark on where horses need to finish. We like comparing these times to what the horses have ran in the past. You can find that information at equibase.com or horseracingnation.com
Below is the field of 12 horses sorted by Post Position. Also included is the Horse, Jockey, Trainer, and Morning Line Odds, and the number of races in the Triple Crown. The horses that are highlighted in Green are horses that raced in the Kentucky Derby. As you can see below the only horse that is going to race all 3 races for the Triple Crown is 5-1 Looking At Lee.
Lookin At Lee: 5/1 PP#6
Mentioned in the 2017 Preakness write up, http://www.beastdfs.com/preakness-2017/, to not cross this horse off your trifecta and superfecta bets, he finished 4th behind Senior Investment, Classic Empire, and Cloud Computing. “Lookin” at the field neither Classic Empire nor Cloud Computing are racing in this year’s Belmont.
The bad thing that is going for this horse is that he is the only horse that is racing in all 3 legs of the Triple Crown. Since 2004 there have only been 2 horses that were able to race in all 3 legs and win at the Belmont. Last horse to do it was American Pharoah in 2015, then you would need to go back a decade when 5-1 Afleet Alex went on to win the 2005 Belmont.
Don’t like Lookin at Lee’s odds to win, however if his odds drop during the day we do like him in trifecta and superfecta bets again. Below are a list of horses that ran in all 3 races since 2004 that finished in the Top3.
In the last 12 years there have been 8 horses that raced in all three races that finished in the Top3, that is 66.6% of the time. During that same span of time there has only been one year where 2 horses finished in the Top3. If you ask us Lookin At Lee is a contender and has a great shot at the very least finishing in the Top4.
Irish War Cry: 7/2 PP#7
You would be wrong if you think that the favorite Irish War Cry has the best chance of winning the Belmont. Since 2004 there has been only 1 horse that was the favorite that actually won the Belmont, and that horse was American Pharoah. During that same span of time there has been 1 favorite that came in second, Smarty Jones in 2004, and one horse, Mine That Bird, that came in third.
Irish War Cry was a 6-1 dud that finished 10th in the Kentucky Derby. Not having raced in the Preakness does increase his odds of winning, but probably not that high. We think he is over rated in this race and there are other horses that you can bet on that will give you more bang for your buck. As the favorite we feel that you still have to use him, so we will be placing him underneath in some trifectas and superfectas.
Meantime: 15/1 PP#9
One horse that does have a great chance of giving you more bang for your buck is Meantime. Meantime is the only horse in the field that has raced on this track and its jockey Mike Smith has a decent track record here, finishing in the Top3 4/9 times in his last 9 races in the Belmont Stakes.
Meantime came in second on a sloppy Belmont track in his last race here, and also lead the race for the majority of the time until favorite Timeline beat him out on the final stretch. In all 4 of his career races so far Meantime is 1-2-1, finishing in the Top3 in all 4 of his races. Not having raced since May 13th he should be well rested and ready to take on Belmont again.
Epicharis: 4/1 PP#11
The horse with the most rest is 4-1 Epicharis. This Japanese horse is 4-1-0 in his last 5 races. It has been since March 25th the last time this horse has raced, where he came in 2nd at the Dubai UAE Derby.
Last year the 20-1 Japanese horse Lani came in third place. Could there be a trend starting with Japanese horses at the Belmont Stakes?
Patch: 12/1 PP#12
Speaking of trends, since 2004 jockey, John Velazquez, has raced in every Belmont Stakes.
There was a stretch from 2006-2012 where he finished 2, 1, 3, 2, 2, 6, 1 at the Belmont Stakes. Not having to WPS in the Belmont Stakes since 2012 some people would want to say that his time is due. Patch is a grinder with a chance of being over bet due to the emotional story of having just one eye, however the Belmont Stakes is a pedigree race and Patch has a great blood line.
Patch’s sire is Union Rags, who won the Belmont in 2012 with the same jockey who is riding Patch in this year’s race. Other horse’s in Patch’s pedigree that also won the Belmont is AP Indy and Seattle Slew.
Patch also has some great Cross Duplicates. When horses are inbreed it is only a factor when both the sire and the dam have similar ancestors. This is important so that the horse can have matching sets of chromosomes (alleles) from a specific ancestor.
Patch has Cross Duplicates of 2 Triple Crown winners Seattle Slew and Secretariat.
Gormley: 8/1 PP#3
Gormley is the only Grade I Stakes winner in the field today and is the only horse, other than Epicharis, to have the same jockey throughout his career. Victor Espinoza has ridden on some great horses at the Belmont Stakes. In 2015 he was the Jockey for the Triple Crown Winner American Pharoah, and in 2014 he was the jockey for the Triple Crown contender California Chrome who finished 4th that race.
When it comes to pedigree Gormley is also a Cross Duplicate of Secretarit, and also does have some AP Indy and Seattle Slew.
Twisted Tom: 20-1 PP#1
Trainer Chad Brown has had a lot of success at this track. At 59% his “in the money” percentage is the highest out of any other trainers that is racing in the Belmont Stakes. Twisted Tom is the second most rested horse in the field today having last raced on April 22nd where he finished 1st at the Fredico Tesio Stakes.
In his last 3 races in 2017 he has won all of them. Jockey Javier Castellano has also had some success here at the Belmont Stakes. He has raced in every Belmont Stakes since 2010 and has came in 2nd 3 times. Twisted Tom is a NY bred horse whose pedigree consists of Seattle Slew, a Cross Duplicate of Storm Cat and also Secretarit.
Twisted Tom’s Sire Creative Cause was a great horse. Multiple stakes winner he has won over $1M in his career and also raced in the 2012 Kentucky Derby and Preakness where he came in 5th and 3rd respectively.
Some of Fun Facts:
In the last 13 years a horse that raced in the Derby has won the Belmont Stakes 8 times, came in second 10 times, and finished third 8 times.
Horses that are racing in the Belmont that also raced in the Kentucky Derby are Tapwrit, Gormley, J Boys Echo, Lookin At Lee, Irish War Cry, and Patch.
Out of the horses mentioned above Lookin At Lee is the only horse that is going to run in all 3 legs of the Triple Crown.
In the last 13 years the favorite horse has won the Belmont once, and that was American Pharoah.
Epicharis is a Japanese horse and is the most rested horse in the field.
Gormley is the only horse in the field that is a Grade I Stakes winner.
Tapwrit’s auction price was $1.2M, the highest among all the other horses in the field.
In the last 3 years there has been at least 1 horse that has WPS that had odds 20-1. Lani in 2016, Keen Ice in 2015, and Commissioner and Medal Count in 2014.
Since 2004 the most favorable post position to WPS is #7, which is Irish War Cry’s Post Position.