Belmont Stakes Betting: Field Reduced to Eight, American Pharoah Works

American Pharoah will face just seven rivals in the Belmont Stakes. (Photo credit: Maryland Jockey Club).

American Pharoah’s bid for history on Saturday in the Belmont Stakes (G1) got a bit easier on Monday morning with defections of two starters, reducing the field to eight, and the Bob Baffert trainee drew rave reviews after posting his final workout for the third jewel of the Triple Crown.

Trainer Ken McPeek announced that The Truth or Else is out of the Belmont Stakes with filling in his ankle. The colt won an allowance optional claiming race at Belmont Park on May 22. He was no match for American Pharoah in his fourth in the Rebel Stakes (G2) and seventh in the Arkansas Derby (G1) and was listed at Bovada at 50-1 for the Belmont Stakes.

Trainer Todd Pletcher will now have just two runners as Carpe Diem has been withdrawn from consideration in the Belmont. The colt won the Tampa Bay Derby (G2) and Toyota Blue Grass (G1) and was sent off as the third betting choice in the Kentucky Derby but was a disappointing 10th.

Pletcher will saddle Materiality, who will reunited with John Velazquez. The colt is currently at odds of 13-1 at Bovada. In addition, Pletcher will give a leg up to Javier Castellano, who will ride Peter Pan (G2) winner Madefromlucky.

American Pharoah put in his final work for Saturday’s race, breezing five furlongs in 1:00 1/5 seconds under jockey Martin Garcia. The colt was times in :25 for the opening quarter-mile, :36 3/5 for three furlongs, and :48 3/5 for a half-mile. He galloped out six furlongs in 1:13, seven furlongs in 1:26, and one mile in 1:39 3/5, according to Churchill officials.

“Everything went really well this morning,” Baffert told the press after the work. “The track was in perfect shape. It went just as we thought it would. He just kept clicking right along. Now we just play the waiting game.”

Thee Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner will board a plane for New York on Tuesday

American Pharoah Workout at Churchill Downs on June 1


Probable Belmont Stakes Field:

Horse                             Trainer                      Jockey                               Last Race

American Pharoah        Bob Baffert               Victor Espinoza                Preakness, 1st

Frammento                   Nick Zito                    Mike Smith                     Kentucky Derby, 11th

Frosted                         Kiaran McLaughlin    Joel Rosario                     Kentucky Derby, 4th

Keen Ice                       Dale Romans           Kent Desormeaux            Kentucky Derby, 7th

Madefromlucky             Todd Pletcher           Javier Castellano            Peter Pan, 1st

Materiality                     Todd Pletcher           John Velazquez              Kentucky Derby, 6th

Mubtaahij                      Michael de Kock       Irad Ortiz Jr.                   Kentucky Derby, 8th

Tale of Verve                Dallas Stewart          Gary Stevens                  Preakness, 2nd

Go to Odds Shark for the latest betting odds for the Belmont Stakes.


Michael Dempsey’s Belmont Stakes Day Report $20.00

Belmont Stakes Michael’s Report includes his selections, analysis, fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for the entire Belmont Stakes Day card. Report will be available by June 5.

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.

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