Belmont Park, Elmont, New York
Win: Golden Soul – the fourteen
Place and Show: A toss-up between Revolutionary – the nine – and Orb – the five.
For the money – bets William Landers recommends:
Show: 14 (I would put more money on the 14 to show)
Exacta: 14 with (5-9-2)
or 14 with (2-5-8-9-)
or box 2-5-9-14 (better bet costs more though)
Trifecta: 14 with (2-5-9) with (2-5-9)
or 14 with (5-9) with (2-5–8-9)
or box 2-5-8-9-14 (better bet costs more but worth it)
Superfecta: 14-9 with 2-5-9-14-with 2-5-8-9-14 with 2-5-8-9-14
Orb, the winner of the Kentucky Derby is still the favorite going into the Belmont Stakes on June 8th, despite the fact Orb won’t be a Triple Crown contender since losing to Oxbow in the Preakness and placing fourth. Orb’s trainer, Shug McGaughey, blamed post placement and track conditions for Orb’s loss in the second of the three Crown races. Orb, ridden by Joel Rosario, finished eight lengths behind Oxbow who was a 15-1 longshot. Oxbow, however, had the advantage of famed trainer D. Wayne Lukas and jockey Gary Stevens. For Belmont, Orb has the number five post position and Oxbow has number seven.
Revolutionary, another favorite for the Derby, is also popular going into Belmont on Saturday coming in as the second choice as is Oxbow currently third. Revolutionary has the post placement of number nine. Unlimited Budget who is being ridden by female jockey Rosie Napravnik. Todd Pletcher, Unlimited Budget’s trainer Todd Pletcher could have as many as five starters in the race including Revolutionary, Overanalyze, Palace Malice, Midnight Taboo and filly Unlimited Budget.
For the first time since 1996, fourteen horses will be taking the field. With a one a half mile track, the key to the Belmont Stakes is distance – if the horse running has no record for wins in distance it’s unlikely to win on this traditionally tough track. With rain all day Friday and into Saturday morning, sloppy conditions are expected but the racetrack is prepared and will be rolling and sealing the track on Thursday after the races to prevent water from soaking the ground. Orb won on the same wet dirt in the Derby.
Golden Soul, whose trainer is Dallas Stewart and Landers pick for the win, came in second in the Kentucky Derby but did not run in the Preakness. Golden Soul is considered a perfect horse for this tracks length but has the outside post position at fourteen. His jockey Robby Albarado has shown in the past he can get horses into the inside from outer field positions but it should also be noted no horse has ever won from the last post.
Post time for the Belmont is 6:36PM and can be seen on NBC.
About William Landers as a handicapper:
William Landers, the CEO and founder of Ameriborn News Network has his own notable history as a horse handicapper. In November of 1999, Landers won the Foxwoods Ultimate Breeders Cup which netted him some nice prize money.
That win allowed him to compete in the first ever National Handicap Championship in Las Vegas in January of 2000 put on by the DRF and the NTRA. Landers was the first day leader with a 144 point lead over the winner STEVE WALKER, who ended up catching him on the second day, with some seriously unusual long shots that included a 99 –1 horse from Steve’s home track. Landers picked the last three mandatory races on the TVG network on the first day perfectly. There is prize money today on the first day leader as the annual championship has evolved, but the original competition at the time didn’t have a first day leader prize.
After the first 20 races Saturday, Landers (Foxwoods) led with $157.00. Next with $142.80 was Anna May Orr (Rockingham), a 68-year-old grandmother who broke every racetrack stereotype. Third was MacClowry (Turf Paradise) with $141.30.
Written by Juliana Simone and William Landers
References: Kenny Mayne/ESPN http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/magazine/archives/news/story?page=magazine-20000306-article10
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