Our latest preview of the 2012 Belmont Stakes entries has a more defined list of contenders.
Some notable names have dropped out of contention in the 2012 Belmont Stakes field, and a few horses have already stepped up to replace them when the 3rd leg of the Triple Crown is ran on May 9th at Belmont Park. Our initial preview of the 2012 Belmont Stakes’ likely entries still has a ton of information about most of the field, but we’ll concentrate on the changes that have been made since that point 11 days ago.
Alpha is out of the Belmont Stakes after coming up with a fever, and the 12th place finisher in the Kentucky Derby is probably the most profile contender to drop out of contention. Also removed from our list of likely entries for the Belmont Stakes is Peter Pan winner Mark Valeski, who has apparently lacked energy in recent days.
Although 8th place Kentucky Derby finisher Rousing Sermon hasn’t officially been ruled out of the 2012 Belmont Stakes, his trainers don’t sound overly optimistic about his addition into the list of entries at this point. Stealcase is also out of contention for the Belmont Stakes, but he really didn’t have the pedigree or the results to be considered for this long 1 ½-mile race in the first place.
The new additions to the potential 2012 Belmont Stakes field that we didn’t cover in the first article are Street Life, Unstoppable U, and Ravelo’s Boy. We’ll preview the 3 new horses likely to make up the Belmont Stakes field below, but none of them figure to be amongst the favorites for this race.
Bovada Sportsbook already has betting odds up on just about every horse rumored to be in the field this year, and anyone who clicks on our link to get signed up will receive a 100% cash bonus that is good for up to $125 in free money on top of their deposit! The best part about placing a bet on the Belmont Stakes early is that you’ll lock in the price you bet it at, as opposed to waiting for the day of the race and having to take whatever the odds get pushed to at post time.
2012 Belmont Stakes – Early Odds:
I’ll Have Another – 7/5
Union Rags, 9/2
Street Life, 15/1
Unstoppable U, 30/1
Five Sixteen, 50/1
Guyana Star Dweej, 50/1
Ravelo’s Boy, 50/1
2012 Belmont Stakes – Likely Entries Preview:
I’ll Have Another – Has now won 4 straight graded stakes after finishing 6th in the Hopeful during his last race in 2011. He’s beaten the best in the sport while winning the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes, and will be the favorite in the Belmont Stakes.
Dullahan – This three-year-old wasn’t considered to be amongst the top crop of horses heading into the year, but then he went on to beat Hansen while winning the Blue Grass Stakes before finishing an encouraging 3rd in the Kentucky Derby. Dullahan seems to be getting better the more distance he adds.
Union Rags – Was the Kentucky Derby favorite before finishing 3rd in the Florida Derby. Union Rags went on to finish 7th in the Kentucky Derby in his longest race to date and there are definitely questions whether he can stretch out to the Belmont distance. He was sired by a horse in Dixie Union that has one career win at longer than a mile.
Paynter – Potential is the name of the game when discussing this guy. He’s sired by Awesome Again which should mean he can run for days, but at the same time he has just 2 races since breaking his maiden and lacks experience. Paynter finished 4th in the Santa Anita Derby and 2nd in the Derby Trial, but could be a spoiler if he takes the leap many are expecting in the Belmont Stakes.
Optimizer – Was 11th in the Kentucky Derby and 6th in the Preakness Stakes, and it’s tough to see where he fits in amongst the other Belmont Stakes likely entries. He’s never won in 10 tries since breaking his maiden and has finished top 3 in just 1 of his last 7. Sired by a turf horse, but also a turf horse that excelled at longer distances.
Guyana Star Dweej – Has never raced in a graded stakes and took 8 tries to break his maiden. Guyana Star Dweej’s one race since then was a 2nd place finish in an allowance at Belmont Park, so it’s tough to expect much. For what it’s worth, he’s sired by a horse in Eddington that finished 4th in the Belmont Stakes and seemed to improve with added distance.
Five Sixteen – Took 5 tries to break his maiden and is coming off a disappointing 4th in his first ever allowance race. Five Sixteen has never been put up against anything resembling Triple Crown competition but is sired by 2006 Breeders’ Cup Classic and 2007 Dubai World Cup winner Invasor, so he at least has incredible bloodlines.
Atigun – This guy broken his maiden after a few tries but then was a disappointing 5th in the Kentucky Jockey Club. He then won an allowance before disappointing again in the Rebel and the Arkansas Derby. After that he won another allowance but it remains to be seen if Atigun can compete at above the lower level he’s been winning at.
Street Life – The son of Street Sense is the only one of the new Belmont Stakes entries that is amongst the top of the pack in terms of betting odds. Street Life won the Broad Bush but has since gone on to finish 6th in the Wood Memorial and 3rd in the Peter Pan at Belmont Park. He should handle the distance, but this might be a little too large of a jump up in competition for the potential spoiler.
Unstoppable U – The good news is that Unstoppable U has won both of his career races, and his last win came at Belmont Park. The bad news is that he has never gone longer than a mile in his career and his wins came in maiden-breaking and allowance affairs. He did beat Guyana Star Dweej in that allowance win, but the Belmont Stakes long shot isn’t exactly a measuring stick with the high level of contenders entered here.
Ravelo’s Boy – This horse has a ton of experience but no proven results that make me think he’ll compete with the rest of the field in the Belmont Stakes. He has 2 career wins over 12 races but those came at maiden and allowance levels. He’s finished no better than 4th this season in losing efforts in the Gulfstream Park Derby, Sam F. Davis, and Tampa Bay Derby.