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Belmont Park is the place to be this weekend for any horse player. Not only is this the third leg of the Triple Crown, but the racing card for the day is the BEST card you will see all year and that includes Breeders Cup Day. There are 10, yes 10 stakes races on the card starting with the Easy Goer Stakes at 12:07 post time. Should be a great day of racing.
On to the Belmont Stakes. If you have never been to Belmont Park you are missing the largest race course/track you will ever see.
You can fit 2 Saratoga Race courses inside the oval at Belmont. Saratoga is hystoric, Gulfstream and Santa Anita have beauty, but nothing has the size of Belmont Park. Experienced riders will help on this track.
Horses in Post Position order
MEDAL COUNT - Not a fan of this horse. Has not really showed anything in previous races. Came in 8th in the Derby and has been off since. He ran best races on Keenlands synthetic track. I do not see this horse in the same class as the others.
CALIFORNIA CHROME - What is there to say about this horse. We all know who he is and what he can do; 6 Race win streak and has never really had a challenge. This race is 1 1/2 miles, he seems set to hold pace and cruise to victory for the Triple Crown. Horse can run any type of race. We have to see if there is any speed in this race to set the pace and allow a closer to come very late, that is the only way this horse can lose.
MATTERHORN - Very light raced horse with only 4 career starts and no experience against these. Highest buyer figure is a 99. I don't see why this horse is entered unless Pletcher is going to go against this horses rating style and send him out front to run as a rabbit. I don't see how this horse should be in here when there are so many other races to choose from.
COMMANDING CURVE - Based on the Derby race I would have thought this horse would be second choice. He came closing like a monster to get 2nd place at 37-1 in Derby. This is the only horse in the field that technically ran further and faster then CALIFORNIA CHROME. This horse broke from the 17 gate, ran 8 wide most of the race and still came flying in the end. California Chrome ran 3 wide in a rated position. If you straighten them out and go 1/4 pole, to 1/4 pole, this horse wins the race by 2 lengths. Granted California Chrome was never really pushed but Command Curve ran well. Dallas Stewart is not known for winning in NY, but he has won some big races. This horse has 7 races under his belt, and a 105 buyer figure shows he can hang with the big boys.
RIDE ON CURLIN - Second place finish in the Preakness and 7th in Derby. Derby was a horrible trip but was able to capitalize on less horses in Preakness and come closing late. This horse also gets a HUGE jockey change to Johnny Valesquez. This is the 3rd different jockey for his third race in a row and Johnny V. is one of the best. Horse has a 105 buyer and his trainer says he has yet to hit his full potential. He has 11 races under his belt and only 1 of them have him out of the money. Major Player!
MATUSZAK - Interesting entry. Light raced horse with only 4 races, but has 2 thirds and a place. Buyer figure of only 97. Came in second last race to Kid Cruz who did nothing against these horses in Preakness. Bill Mott enters this horse which is strange, he must see something in him to pay the entry fee. I don't see it, just the trainer and this horse is bread to run long............ makes me wonder.
SAMRAAT - This horse did nothing wrong up until the Derby. He will most likely be the front runner here as that is his style. He did rate a bit in Derby but gave way. At 1 and 1/2 miles I don't see this horse lasting. Hoping he really goes forward and gets out front. Has the buyer of 103 this year and 108 last year so the potential to hang is there, but again, this is 1 1/2 mile race, not 1 1/16th.
COMMISSIONER - Another Pletcher entry who has a race over this track, although it was in slop. Horse has a 103 buyer so he can play with this group and is bread to go long. Pletcher says the longer the better with him. I think he wins the Peter Pan Stakes on a dry track which would have made him a lower odds horse here. Costellano is on board for this one. Could be a player.
WICKED STRONG - I would have liked this horse in the Preakness. I didn't like him in the Derby cause I thought he would bounce off of the 20 point jump to a 107 buyer. He ran a good race in the Derby, came closing when cleared. Story around Belmont is this horse is training like a monster. Has the fastest times on the training track of all horses. The training track is a deeper track used to condition horses and strengthen them. If he is tearing it up on that track, he may do wonders on the main track. MAJOR PLAYER!
GENERAL AROD - This horse could be the over look of all the horses in this race. Had a very troubled trip in the Derby to come in 11th. Was never in it with the wall of horses in that race. Came in 4th in the Preakness, but was checked far turn and had to re-rally to get a 4th place finish. He was up there on lead early, but when angled out got caught in traffic.
Cleaner trip and he gets 3rd easily. Rosie hops on board again and a 105 buyer puts this horse in contention. The thing here is 1 1/2 miles. Has the pedigree in Roman Ruler and Dynaformer...a clean trip may get this horse in triple and super exotics.
TONALIST - lightly raced horse who is coming off a win in the Peter Pan Stakes over this surface. He has the highest buyer rating of 108. Only horse to have that with California Chrome. Trainer is known for his turf horses more than dirt horses though. Seems to be the "wise guy" pick based on the Peter Pan Stakes and his breeding. This horse is meant to go long and longer. I didn't like the Peter Pan Stakes as it was a sloppy track. I think Commissioner wins that race if it is dry. You can see at the top of the stretch, Commissioner caught Tonalist, but once asked to run Commissioner didn't take to surface, you see his legs part a bit, but Tonalist took to it and went on to win.
COMMISSIONER. TONALIST, MATUSZAK, MATTERHORN are all carrying 126lbs. for the first time. The previous races were run with 116 lbs. Horses are going to have 10 additional lbs. and go almost 1/4 mile further. I have others in here who have proved they can carry 126 lbs., and are more mature horses race wise. Remember, horses change after every race, they get bigger and stronger.
7-9-11 raced horse is stronger than horses that have only run 3-4 times. Especially for 3 year old babies.
[B]WAGER CALIFORNIA CHROME is going to go off at 3/5 or 4/5. I hope 4/5 but with so many people betting on it just to have a copy of a Triple Crown win ticket I see 3/5. Betting wise we can not make money with this horse sooo with that being said.......... I am going to go against California Chrome in exotics and hedge with some exotics.....
$5 triple..... COMMANDING CURVE/RIDE ON CURLIN/WICKED STRONG over COMMANDING CURVE/RIDE ON CURLIN/WICKED STRONG over CALIFORNIA CHROME. ($30 Wager)
hedge $2 triple.. CALIFORNIA CHROME over COMMANDING CURVE/RIDE ON CURLIN/WICKED STRONG over COMMANDING CURVE/RIDE ON CURLIN/WICKED STRONG ($12 wager)
$10 triple COMMANDING CURVE over CALIFORNIA CHROME over RIDE ON CURLIN, GENERAL AROD, WICKED STRONG ($30 wager).
I think COMMANDING CURVE has the stamina to go 1 1/2 miles more so than any other horse in here that is why I have him on top to win it all. CALIFORNIA CHROME is the horse and the pace scenario will have to be a good one for this to happen. If the mile goes in 1:14 or 1:15 it is over and we have a Triple Crown winner, but if someone gets out and makes CALIFORNIA CHROME run and this goes in 1:11 maybe even 1:12 I see COMMANDING CURVE catching others in the stretch.
I do not see a 5 length victory by any horse...who over wins, wins by 1/2 length or full length. It will be a very very good race.
Here are the averages for this race the past 10 years.........
the average $2 Win paid ......................... $32.50
the average $2 Exacta paid ................. $250.76
the average $2 Trifecta paid ........... $1,796.46
the average $1 Superfecta paid ...... $9,196.63
If CALIFORNIA CHROME wins we have history.........so that is enough to route for, but if he does not, then we hopefully make some money.
UNDER CARD SPOT PLAYS..
BEST RACE OF THE DAY ......... RACE 7 OGDEN PHIPPS
HARDEST TO HANDICAP..........Race 8 Longines Just a Game Stakes.
BEST BET.......... Race 7 BEHOLDER. I have heard that BEHOLDER is training like a monster. Has hit fractions that very few horses have ever reached before.......sub 46.00 for 4 furlongs. Tough field, but taking her to win.
[B]LONG SHOT OF THE DAY.. DAME MARIE race 8
BEST HORSE ON CARD = PALICE MALICE
These are my picks. Lets hope we can keep the good fortune going.