The third leg of the American Triple Crown is just days away, and all 10 horses set to face off in New York on Saturday at the Belmont Stakes have their post positions. Justify, the only competitor with a chance at capturing the Triple Crown, seemed to make out OK after two straight races out of Post 7, landing the inside track for Belmont. Here's a complete rundown of the 2018 Belmont Stakes post positions and odds:
Justify will be a heavy favorite to win the Belmont Stakes: The morning line assigned him 4-5 odds after the draw and with the possibility of a Triple Crown in play, many will buy souvenir tickets to keep as mementos, sending those odds down even further. But favorites aren’t always sure things in the 1 1/2-mile Test of Champions. Last year’s winner, Tapwrit, went off at odds of 6-1 and Creator paid a healthy 15-1 in 2016. In fact, American Pharoah is the only favorite in the last 16 years to cross the finish line first in the third leg of the Triple Crown.
The horses, a rumor of thundering hoofs and distant roars disappearing into the fog at the first turn, made an invisible loop around Pimlico Race Course’s liquid track, then suddenly reappeared out of the gauzy mist and came heaving and splashing down the homestretch. Out in front was the strapping chestnut colt named Justify, his white blaze the first thing to come into view. But behind him — and keeping pace, if not gaining — was a pack of rivals.
For horseplayers, the unfortunate news Wednesday morning that Classic Empire will miss Saturday's Belmont Stakes due to a foot abscess cut two ways. There was one segment of horseplayers who most certainly would have considered Classic Empire the clear horse to beat in the Belmont and would have made him a centerpiece in all their plays. This group would have noted that Classic Empire's fourth in the Kentucky Derby was a terrific effort, considering how he was mugged at the start, and that he had only one truly representative outing in six months (the Arkansas Derby) after you discount his forgettable Holy Bull, where he was compromised by the same type of foot issue that took him out of the Belmont.
A $1 million bonus is being offered to a horse that sweeps this year’s Pacific Classic, Awesome Again Stakes and the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Gabriel Charles, unraced since winning the 2015 Grade 1 Eddie Read, will face a large, competitive field when he makes his comeback in the Grade 3, $100,000 San Francisco Mile on Saturday at Golden Gate Fields.
Grade I events in Hong Kong, Japan, England and France highlight weekend Thoroughbred racing while American fans gear up for the Kentucky Derby a week down the road.
When people think of horse racing, they think Churchill Downs. With the new season starting this weekend, and earnings later this week, We speak with CEO Bill Carstanjen about the business of horse racing, and how Churchill Downs is racing to stay on top.
Overtaken by lotteries, casinos, and other forms of gambling, thoroughbred racing has become something of a losing bet in recent decades.