We are now less than a week from the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (G1), with the favorite California Chrome getting in his final major prep on Saturday morning while General A Rod will now be headed to the race.
All eyes were on Belmont Park and the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Saturday morning, and the colt did not disappoint. Under jockey Victor Espinoza the colt worked four furlongs in 47.69, and then was caught in 59.93 for five furlongs, galloping out in 1:12.95 and credited with a double gallop-out in 1:26.28 over a fast track according to NYRA clockers.
Respected clocker Bruno De Julio of “Racing With Bruno” tweeted shortly after the work:
Chrome works in 12.1, 24,4, 47.2 out 59.3 and 112.2 left ear cocked. Ez great coat and very good look to him – sharp #BelmontStakes
— Racingwithbruno (@Racingwithbruno) May 31, 2014
Espinoza was impressed. “It was great,” he told the NYRA Media Department. “I started not too fast. We were going: 12, :12, :12. We picked it up a little at the end. Across the wire, I dropped the reins a little bit. That’s what he always does.”
California Chrome Works
Meanwhile, after a Saturday morning workout at Trackside in Louisville, trainer Mike Maker announced that General A Rod would be sent to New York for the third jewel of the Triple Crown. The colt checked in 11th in the Kentucky Derby and fourth in the Preakness. He will join California Chrome and Ride On Curlin as the only runners that will compete in all three races.
The colt was credited with a five-furlong work in 1:00.20. The colt is currently listed at betting odds of +2500 at BetOnline.
One of the new shooters to the Triple Crown is Tonalist, who is currently the fifth choice in the early betting at +850. The Christophe Clement trainee put in his final work on Saturday morning at Belmont Park, going five furlongs in 1:00.11.
The colt won the Peter Pan Stakes (G2) going nine furlongs over the Belmont Park main track in his last outing on May 10.
Two of the runners expected to be early pace factors put in works on Saturday morning as well. Social Inclusion drilled three furlongs in 33.55 and NYRA clockers caught him galloping out a half-mile in :45 2/5, five-eighths in :58, and six furlongs in 1:09 4/5. A decision on his status will come on Monday according to his connections.
Samraat, who weakened to finish fifth after being in the mix early in the Kentucky Derby put in a one-mile drill in 1:47.55. The colt won his first five career starts including taking the Withers (G3) and Gotham (G3) before running second to Wicked Strong in the Wood Memorial (G1) in his final Derby prep.
Entries for the race will be taken on Wednesday.
Belmont Stakes Betting Odds as of May 31 via BetOnline:
California Chrome -130
Commanding Curve +700
Kid Cruz +4000
Ride On Curlin +750
Social Inclusion +1800
Wicked Strong +700
Medal Count +2500
General a Rod +2500
Michael’s Report includes his selections, analysis, fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for the entire Belmont Stakes Day card.
The third jewel of the Triple Crown features an outstanding day of horse betting that also includes the Grade 1, $1 million Manhattan, the Grade 1, $750,000 Longines Just a Game, the Grade 2, $500,000 Woody Stephens, the Grade 1, $1.25 million Metropolitan Handicap, the Grade 1, $1 million Ogden Phipps, the Grade 1, $750,000 Acorn, the Grade 2, $500,000 Brooklyn Invitational, the Grade 3, $300,000 Jaipur Invitational, and the $150,000 Easy Goer. Report will be available by Friday June 6.