History could be made at the 2018 Belmont Stakes as Justify takes aim at the Triple Crown. That storyline looms large in pre-race coverage, and early betting odds suggest Justify can win the race and enter rarified air as just the 13th Triple Crown winner and the first since American Pharoah in 2015.
Here’s a look at some of the best Belmont Stakes coverage from around the web this morning, including betting tips and a look at Justify’s big challenge …
Start with the basics of Belmont Stakes betting strategy: the post position draw. Justin Sayers from the Louisville Courier Journal has more on the draw, which will take place around 5:30 p.m. EST, and how to watch it.
Bovada has early odds for the 2018 Belmont Stakes, and they are listed as follows:
Justify, 45Hofburg, 41Bravazo, 71Vino Rosso, 81Tenfold, 101Blended Citizen, 141Gronkowski, 251Noble Indy, 331Free Drop Billy, 501
Steven Falk has more on the basics of the Belmont Stakes, including the prize, the distance and ticket info in a piece for the Asbury Park-Press.
Early signs suggest rains will arrive after the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, but the forecast is worth watching, writes AccuWeather’s Alex Sosnowski. Justify won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness in muddy conditions and might be forced to do the same at the Belmont if the storm arrives earlier than expected.
Justify’s trainer Bob Baffert discussed jockey Mike Smith and the most important part of his ride in an interview with WTVQ’s Alex Risen.
“Mike, just like any other rider, has to have the horse underneath him to succeed,” Baffert told Risen. “A good rider’s job is to keep the horse out of trouble and make split-second decisions if he needs to. Really the biggest part of the race is breaking cleanly from the gate. With Pharoah, he broke about one length slower than the field. It could’ve been a bad situation but he got into a good position early. After the gate break, you just have to see how the race plays out.”
Baffter also feels good about his other entrant, Restoring Hope, according to agen sbobet Jonathan Lintner from Horse Racing Nation.
Newsday’s Ed McNamara concluded that if Justify can set a leisurely pace, he’ll cruise to a 2018 Belmont Stakes win and the Triple Crown.
Justify’s pursuit of the Triple Crown more than triples the attention for the Belmont Stakes, writes Tom Pedulla for the New York Times.
Melissa Hoppert has more on Justify and his pursuit of the Triple Crown, including his chances and which horses can challenge him, in another New York Times piece.
Justify could bring horse racing a big opportunity, according to Richard Eng for America’s Best Racing.
Historically, a drop in Brisnet speed rating from the Kentucky Derby to the Preakness isn’t a best indicator for Triple Crown contenders, Mike Shutty writes in a well-researched breakdown for Horse Racing Nation.
Justify was smooth and easy in his final pre-Belmont work, writes Alicia Wincze-Hughes for America’s Best Racing.