Horse Racing Betting - Orb Favored, But Lots of Possibilities in Crowded Belmont Field
by Charles Jay, Exclusive to Predictem.com
Well,BetAnySportscustomers know that we have had two different horses come home first in racing’s Triple Crown events this year, as Orb romped home in the Kentucky Derby and Oxbow won the Preakness at Pimlico. Who will win in potentially the most grueling race of all - the Belmont Stakes? That’s a question that does not have an easy answer, as things could be very wide-open at Belmont Park on Saturday, with post time for the mile-and-a-half race at 6:36 PM ET. On the line is a million-dollar purse in this prestigious Grade I event.
When you take a look at the field, there are a lot entrants who will be running this distance. Sometimes things really get thinned out when we get around to the Belmont, so this is an indication of the state of the game as far as three-year-olds are concerned. There are many barns who feel they have a shot.
Here are the odds on the race, as they are posted at the racebook at5Dimes, with the odds naturally subject to change:
Saturday, June 8 - 6:36 PM ET
Belmont Park - Elmont, NY
3-year-olds - 1.5 miles
1 - Frac Daddy +2500
2 - Freedom Child +800
3 - Overanalyze +1200
4 - Giant Finish +3000
5 - Orb +235
6 - Incognito +1300
7 - Oxbow +555
8 - Midnight Taboo +2800
9 - Revolutionary +475
10 - Will Take Charge +1650
11 - Vyjack +2000
12 - Palace Malice +1000
13 - Unlimited Budget +750
14 - Golden Soul +780
Yes, this is known as the “Test of the Champion,” and there are likely to be a lot of factors at play. One of them is the weather that has started to hit the northeast, and which soaked Belmont’s “Big Sandy” dirt track on Friday. That rain stopped, for the most part, on Saturday morning, but the besthorse bettors can probably hope for in the way of conditions is that it will be termed “muddy.”
The size of the field is another factor; there are only five fewer competitors here than there were in the Kentucky Derby. One trainer (Todd Pletcher) has five different combatants in this race, and there is speculation as to what kind of pace we are going to see, because that will impact the outcome, without question.
When you are talking about a distance of a mile and a half, you have to think about the horses who can close while others tire out. One of the first names that is going to come to mind is Orb, who was such an impressive winner in the Kentucky Derby, coming from way back to win over a field of nineteen. What had a lot of people excited was the fact that Orb had to cover so much more ground than the others, going six wide around the final turn.
One of the big benefits to Orb (+235 in horse racing betting atBetAnySports) and the other closing horses, who were all near the back of the pack at the half-mile mark, was that the early pace was so fast. That was the product of the way Palace Malice was sent out. Strong early fractions took a lot of pretenders out of the running when the time came to roar down the stretch. Such was not the case in the Preakness Stakes, as Oxbow got something of a soft ride, not being challenged too much on the lead, and having energy to spare in the final stages to win by almost two lengths over Itsmyluckyday.
There is no doubt that there can be enough speed to set swift early fractions. Palace Malice (+1000), who broke from the gate at Churchill Downs last month and blazed out to a very fast quarter and half-mile, is in the Belmont field, and may be held back a bit this time. Or, the aforementioned Pletcher could have him get out in front again, hoping to create a scenario by which his closer, Revolutionary (+475), or even Overanalyze, the winner of the Remsen and Arkansas Derby, will be able to exploit that by coming with a big late kick.
There are others who could break fast and still others who can close. Freedom Child (+800 atBetAnySports) appears to be one contender here who wants to be at or near the front, and may be pushed by others, maybe even Oxbow. And along with Orb and Revolutionary, Frac Daddy will be looking to make a late move, as will Vyjack, possibly Incognito,. and without question, Golden Soul.
Vyjack had absolutely nothing going in the Derby, finishing 18th, more than 52 lengths behind Orb. But previous efforts in the Wood Memorial and Gotham Stakes indicated that this was a horse to be reckoned with. Frac Daddy was a late addition to the field who was second in the Arkansas Derby and 16th in the Kentucky Derby. Incognito’s sire (A.P. Indy) and grandsire (Seattle Slew) both won the Belmont, though the colt has raced only once for stakes, failing to hit the board in the Peter Pan last month at Belmont.
Golden Soul (+780 in horse racing betting atBetAnySports) was the Kentucky Derby entrant with the lowest career earnings, but took advantage of the pace and the surface to charge home with a shocking second-place finish as a 34-1 shot. Certainly trainer Dallas Stewart will be looking for someone to set strong early fractions again, and when you look at this horse’s past performances, he unquestionably believes in the principle of A-B-C; that is, “always be closing.”
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