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Belmont Day Preview: The “Dream Card”

Belmont Day Preview: The “Dream Card”

One day…TEN stakes races…NINE graded stakes…SIX grade one races!  You can say what you want about new NYRA President Chris Kay, but we think he’s hit a home run with this one.  Obviously he got a little bit of luck when California Chrome won both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, but sometimes that luck is deserving.  Lets take a look at what could be the best single day card in the history of horse racing!

Belmont Stakes (Grade 1)

Purse: $1,500,000

Distance: 1 1/2 Miles (Dirt)

Restrictions: 3 Year Olds

Probables: General A Rod, Medal Count, Matterhorn, Samraat, Wicked Strong, Commissioner, Ride On Curlin, Social Inclusion, Kid Cruz, Tonalist, California Chrome, Commanding Curve

Outlook: We’ll have a full preview of this race on Thursday, but obviously this one needs no explaining.  California Chrome looks to join racing immortality against what looks to be a full field of challengers.  Perhaps the most exciting race we’ve seen since Zenyatta’s 2010 Breeder Cup Classic bid.

Acorn Stakes (Grade 1)

Purse: $750,000

Distance: 1 Mile (Dirt)

Restrictions: 3 Year Old Fillies

Probables: Risqué Reality, She’s A Tiger, La Madrina, Vero Amore, Sweet Reason, Sweet Whiskey, Our Amazing Rose, Lady Paradime, Artemis Agrotera, Aqua Regina, Unbridled Forever, Fiftyshadesofgold, My Miss Sophia, Fashion Plate, House Rules

Outlook: The absence of Untapable does hurt this race somewhat, but it should be competitive regardless.  My Miss Sophia will surely be the headliner after her solid second in the Kentucky Oaks.  She’ll challenged by recent graded stakes winner Fiftyshadesofgold, as well as local horses Sweet Reason and Sweet Whiskey.  The third place finisher in the Oaks, Unbridled Forever, could also start here, as well as She’s A Tiger who is looking to round back into her 2 year old form.

Manhattan (Grade 1)

Purse: $1,000,000

Distance: 1 1/4 Miles (Turf)

Restrictions: 4 year olds and upward

Probables: Speaking of Which, Rookie Sensation, Kaigun, Five Iron, Amira’s Prince, Finnegans Wake, Hey Leroy, Skyring, Admiral Kitten, Boisterous, Real Solution, Little Mike, Grandeur, Imagining, Seek Again

Outlook: This one looks to be a wide open “grab bag” of fun.  Without a dominant turf horse so far this year these types of races have seen their fair share of long prices.  Probably an “all” type of race in your pick 3’s or 4’s.

Met Mile Handicap (Grade 1)

Purse: $1,250,000

Distance: 1 Mile (Dirt)

Restrictions: 3 Year Olds and Upward

Probables: Palace Malice, Declan’s Warrior, Moreno, Normandy Invasion, Cleary Now, Broadway Empire, Capo Bastone, Shakin It Up, Central Banker, Goldencents, Vyjack, Romansh

Outlook: So many potential story lines with this one!  Can Palace Malice pull off the Belmont Stakes/Met Mile double?  Will Normandy Invasion finally break through with a huge Grade 1 win?  How will Goldencents run off the layoff?  Can any of the others pull the upset and earn a career defining victory?  This one has it all!!  Will surely live up to it’s hype.

Just a Game Stakes (Grade 1)

Purse: $750,000

Distance: 1 Mile (Turf)

Restrictions: Fillies and Mares 4 year olds and upward

Probables: Unlimited Budget, Ready Signal, Waterway Run, Somali Lemonade, Flimbi, Coffe Clique, Stephanie’s Kitten, Dame Marie, Center Court, Abaco, Hard Not to Like, Better Lucky, Discreet Marq

Outlook: This one is much like the Manhattan in the fact that it’s going to be wide open.  Most of the fillies in this division have been knocking heads for a few years now, so perhaps a new shooter like Unlimited Budget could surprise.   Another “ALL” type race for pick 3’s and 4’s

Ogden Phipps (Grade 1)

Purse: $1,000,000

Distance: 1 1/16 Miles (Dirt)

Restrictions: Fillies and Mares 4 Year olds and upward

Probables: Belle Gallantey, Lunar Surge, My Wandy’s Girl, Classic Point, Midnight Lucky, Fiftyshadesofhay, Close Hatches, Princess of Sylmar, Beholder

Outlook: Say hello to what might be the race of the year.  Beholder is a back to back eclipse award winner and could be better than ever this year.  Close Hatches, who finished second to Beholder in last years Breeders Cup Distaff, looks like she’s improved and by all accounts may be ready to seriously challenge Beholder.  Oh yeah…and lets not forget about Princess of Sylmar!  She’ll now have the home track advantage in her favor, and has come back to the races very strong in 2014.  If that wasn’t enough…throw in the incredibly speedy and talented Midnight Lucky!!  What a race!!

Woody Stephens (Grade 2)


Distance: 7 furlongs (Dirt)

Restrictions: 3 year olds

Probables: Top Fortitude, Coup de Grace, Kobe’s Back, Social Inclusion, Good Bye Greg, Tonito M, Havana, Embellishing Bob

Outlook: This race could all depend on Social Inclusion.  It has not yet been decided whether he will enter here or the Belmont Stakes.  His natural speed and running style could make for a nice fit in this race.  His biggest challenge will come from Coup de Grace, that is a sure fire 7 furlong sprinter.

Brooklyn Invitational (Grade 2)

Purse: $500,000

Distance: 1 1/2 Miles (Dirt)

Restrictions: 4 Year olds and upward

Probables: Ground Transport, Blingo, ???

Outlook: The field is up in the air at this point, but it is great having a mile and one half race on the card so we can use it as a measuring stick and handicapping tool for the Belmont.  While we may not care all that much about the horses in this race, we will definitely care about how the race is ran.

 Jaipur Invitational (Grade 3)

Purse: $300,000

Distance: 6 furlongs (Turf)

Restrictions: 4 Year olds and upward

Probables: Marriedtothemusic, Ben’s Cat, Marchman, ???

Outlook: As if this card needed more star power…how about getting to see the legendary turf sprinter Ben’s Cat in this one!  We don’t know who all will be lining up against him, but just seeing him is worth the price of admission.

Easy Goer Stakes

Purse: $150,000

Distance: 1 1/16 miles (Dirt)

Restrictions: 3 year olds

Probables: Uncle Sigh, ???

Outlook: Another race that is unknown as to who will be making the starting gate, but if Uncle Sigh shows up in this one it will be nice to see him in a spot where he should win.  It most likely will be tough for him though, as this field will fill up fast.

Still not excited??  Check out our Belmont hype video!


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