Saturday, June 6, 2009

Belmont Stakes Morning Odds and Post Time

Summer Bird
Photo courtesy of Coady Photography

Good Morning to all on Belmont Stakes Day. This is a beautiful morning in New York. We've had two days of fairly heavy rain, but today should be dry.

Just wanted to give you the morning odds.

By Post Positions:

1. Chocolate Candy (10-1)

2. Dunkirk (4-1)

3. Mr. Hot Stuff (15-1)

4. Summer Bird (12-1)

5. Luv Gov (20-1)

6. Charitable Man (3-1)

7. Mine That Bird (2-1)

8. Flying Private (12-1)

9. Miners Escape (15-1)

10. Brave Victory (15-1)

More updates will be available up until Post Time at 6:27pm Eastern time at

As you can see, Mine That Bird and Charitable Man are the first and second favorites according to the morning odds at Belmont, and won't make you much money with a win, although it would be great fun to watch Borel become the first jockey to win the Triple Crown on more than one horse (Triple Crown History).

Summer Bird (12-1) is Mine That Bird's brother, and was 6th in the Kentucky Derby despite the fact that he was in the gloppy, sticky mud the whole race having started at post position 17. He had also been lightly raced to that point, and the Derby doesn't favor the inexperienced. He might just take the early lead since there isn't a sprinter on the ticket. He has an experienced Belmont jockey on his back in Kent Desormeaux which is particularly important in the Belmont. You would think that this long race would favor the closers, but it doesn't. Historically, the stalkers do much better at Belmont, or the close closers. The only horse to come from way back was his father and Mine That Bird's father, Birdstone who won the 2004 Belmont Stakes. At the Belmont Stakes, it pays to be in front or close to the front horse when you pass the mile marker. This is the horse that will give you the best chance for a win with great odds. His mother's sire won the Preakness, so there is definitely speed in his heritage, as well as stamina.

Dunkirk (4-1) is another horse who seems to just be coming into his groove. He has shown speed and stamina, but he's also been a little gawky and awkward up until now. His trainer, Todd Pletcher, who is not given to excitement, has shown some this week after watching his workouts. His jockey, John Velasquez won the Belmont in 2007 on Rags to Riches, owned by Dunkirk's owners. He is a New York Jockey who knows Belmont well and has ridden more than 3,000 winners. He was excited by Dunkirk's workouts. His advice to the other jockeys to beat Mine That Bird was, "sit on the rail".

From the number 2 and number 4 post positions, Dunkirk and Summer Bird will have an easier time getting to the rail than Mine That Bird leaving from post position 7 at the Belmont Stakes.

At (10-1) Chocolate Candy is another good bet, although many feel that even though he's been working out at Belmont for most of May, he still seems to favor the synthetic surfaces. The dirt will be a little tricky today after two days of solid rain. It might dry up and be soft, but not sticky, or it might be a little challenging.

It takes 3 in the money to make a race. The other horse we think has a great chance, even though the odds are not in the bettors' favor, is Charitable Man (3-1), leaving from post position 6, right next to and just inside Mine That Bird. As we have been saying, he's 2 for 2 at Belmont, although he hasn't raced against the best. He wasn't at the Kentucky Derby and he wasn't at the Preakness. He might take the lead, but if he doesn't, he's a close stalker and these horses are favored at the Belmont Stakes.

We can imagine a race with Summer Bird and Charitable Man in front, with Dunkirk and Mine That Bird coming up from behind to round out the front 4. What will be the final order? That is the question of the day. The Belmont is often a surprise.

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