The final chapter in the race for the 2015 Triple Crown will be put to a close on Saturday evening after the 147th running of the Belmont Stakes. For the 2nd straight year, a horse the opportunity to make history and win the Triple Crown, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since Affirmed did it in 1978 (37 years ago).
I’m going to play an exacta with American Pharoah (pictured with trainer Bob Baffert) on top and some longshots on the bottom. There’s really no reason to flip it since I think American Pharoah wins easily, but not flipping it could lead to a disaster. So, make sure to flip the exacta!
My 2015 Belmont Stakes Free Pick
2015 Belmont Stakes
Date: June. 6, 2015
Start Time: 6:40 p.m. ET
Location: Belmont Park, Elmont, New York
TV Info: NBC
Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Distance: 1 1⁄2 miles (12 furlongs)
Purse: US $1.5 million – 1st: $800,000
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Belmont Stakes Key Horse: American Pharoah, 3/5
It’s tough to look past the Kentucky Derby winner to take home the Belmont this Saturday. American Pharoah has been nothing but brilliant since breaking his maiden in the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity. In fact, American Pharoah hasn’t won by less than 3 ¾ lengths in any race save for the Derby where he beat Firing Line by only 1 length. Victor Espinoza took American Pharoah 5 wide on both turns in the Derby. If Espinoza doesn’t make a mistake, American Pharoah should romp in the Belmont.
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) June 2, 2015
Belmont Stakes Horses to Use
Sure, he flattened out in the Kentucky Derby and this race is at 1 ½ miles while the Derby is at 1 ¼ miles, but he’s still a grandson of Dubai Millenium, one of the most exciting horses to run in the past 15 years. He rates a shot at big odds.
The Peter Pan winner could be coming up to a huge race. He busted open, finally, in the Peter Pan and if he learned anything from that race, expect big improvement here. Is he good enough to beat American Pharoah? Probably not, but he might be good enough to get into the exacta.
Tale of Verve, 15/1
Why can’t he come running late like he did in the Preakness Stakes to steal second? Yes, he still only has the maiden win to his credit, but he had to duck inside to pass Divining Rod. That showed guts. This horse is improving.
Keen Ice, 20/1
This horse had all sorts of trouble in the Kentucky Derby. He did exceptionally well by altering his path in the stretch and going from fourteenth to seventh place. If the pace is swift, he could run up there.
Post Positions and Morning Line Odds each horse running in the 2015 Belmont Stakes:
|Post Position||Horse||Jockey||Trainer||Morning Line Odds|
|1||Mubtaahij||Irad Ortiz Jr.||Michael de Kock||10-1|
|2||Tale of Verve||Gary Stevens||Dallas Stewart||15-1|
|3||Madefromlucky||Javier Casellano||Todd Pletcher||12-1|
|4||Frammento||Mike Smith||Nick Zito||30-1|
|5||American Pharoah||Victor Espinoza||Bob Baffert||3-5|
|6||Frosted||Joel Rosario||Kiarin McLaughlin||5-1|
|7||Keen Ice||Kent Desormeaux||Dale Romans||20-1|
|8||Materiality||John Velazquez||Todd Pletcher||6-1|
Belmont Stakes Fun Facts
2:24.00 – Secretariat (1973)
Record Victory Margin:
31 lengths – Secretariat (1973)
Most wins by a jockey:
6 – Jim McLaughlin, Eddie Arcaro
Most wins by a trainer:
8 – James G. Rowe, Sr.
Most wins by an owner:
6 – Belair Stud (1930, 1932, 1935, 1936, 1939, 1955)
6 – James R. Keene (1879, 1901, 1904, 1907, 1908, 1910)