2013 Belmont Stakes betting guide

Jockey Joel Rosario celebrates after crossing the finish first on Orb during the running of the 139th Kentucky Derby horse race at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, May 4, 2013.  Credit: Reuters
Orb won a sloppy Kentucky Derby, and may face similar conditions with a rainy forecast on Saturday.
Credit: Reuters

The 145th running of the “Test of the Champion” won’t coronate a Triple Crown winner, but this balanced field should be a fun trip. Possible rain could muddy the conditions for the favorite Orb, making the 1 1/2-mile track a slogging fight to the end. The race will break out of the gates at 6:36 p.m. on Saturday.

The field (all odds as of June 6) …

1. Frac Daddy (30/1)
Jockey: Alan Garcia
Trainer: Ken McPeek
The inside post certainly doesn’t help a horse in the longest race of its 3-year-old life. He’s a wildly inconsistent horse, but he is well rested. Frac Daddy ran an uninspiring 2:02.89 in his last race in early May at the Arkansas Derby to finish 16th.

2. Freedom Child (8/1)
Jockey: Luis Saez
Trainer: Tom Albertrani
He ran well here at Belmont in May in winning the Peter Pan Stakes in a solid field. Comfortable along the rail, this horse is familiar with the track and must get off to a strong start or risk getting bottled up.

3. Overanalyze (12/1)
Jockey: John Velazquez
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
This is another horse well rested after the Kentucky Derby and capable of strong showings or complete duds. The colt is bred for distance, having been sired by Dixie Union, who counts last year’s Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags among his progeny.

4. Giant Finish (30/1)
Jockey: Edgar Prado
Trainer: Anthony Dutrow
Giant Finish is an intriguing horse that might be peaking at the right time and has been clocking solid showings. With a better closing at the Grade III Spiral in late March, he could have been a Top-3 finish.

5. Orb (5/2)
Jockey: Joel Rosario
Trainer: Shug McGaughey
A disappointing fourth at the Preakness is still not enough to erase the memory of dominance at Churchill Downs. He has looked good in morning workouts and the smart money lands here.

6. Incognito (20/1)
Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.
Trainer: Kiaran McLaughlin
He ran fifth at the Peter Pan, so this horse will struggle at this longer distance. He did run third at Aqueduct in January on a sloppy track like Saturday’s could be, but he will struggle at this class.

7. Oxbow (6/1)
Jockey: Gary Stevens
Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas
The Preakness winner has been erratic at distances, with only one win in his previous six before Pimlico. Lackluster showings at the Arkansas Derby and then the Kentucky Derby should give pause.

8. Midnight Taboo (30/1)
Jockey: Garrett Gomez
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
One of five entrants in the field by trainer Todd Pletcher, he has only been tested twice over a mile – and both came against much weaker classes.

9. Revolutionary (9/2)
Jockey: Javier Castellano
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
He has never placed outside the money in seven career starts, and won three straight heading into the Derby. He has a strong pedigree that should show here.

10. Will Take Charge (20/1)
Jockey: Jon Court
Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas
The D. Wayne Lukas entrant would be a surprise to place in the money. A middle of the pack finish is most likely.

11. Vyjack (20/1)
Jockey: Julien Leparoux
Trainer: Rudy Rodriguez
A slow start, like he had at the Derby, would be disastrous at this length. Vyjack must start strong and move inside or risk a long trip.

12. Palace Malice (15/1)
Jockey: Mike Smith
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
He lacked stamina in April at the Blue Grass and must settle in behind the early leaders. He has some kick but likely not enough from this position.

13. Unlimited Budget (8/1)
Jockey: Rose Napravnik
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
Rosie Napravnik is aboard, which makes this an intriguing pick. The filly got bumped early out of the gate at the Kentucky Oaks, but closed strong to finish third. She shouldn’t have that issue here.

14. Golden Soul (10/1)
Jockey: Robby Albarado
Trainer: Dallas Stewart
He rode the rail early at the Derby and needs to find that happy space at this distance to minimize the trip. He can push for a money finish.

Metro’s pick: 5-3-13-7

Follow Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



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