Updates on 2016 Belmont Stakes Horses
Updates on 2016 Belmont Stakes Horses by Reinier Macatangay: Without Danzing Candy, Uncle Lino and Nyquist, the 148th Belmont Stakes (GI) on June 11 will lack the early zip found in the first two Triple Crown races. Plus, riders will be conscious of the longer 12-furlong distance and reserve their mount in the initial stages, further tilting the table in favor of front-runners and tactical-speed types.
According to pace handicapping logic, Stradivari was compromised by the early fractions of the Preakness Stakes (GI) and looks set to control the pace at Belmont Park in a few weeks, but tactics from opponents can change.
Pay attention to jockey switches or equipment changes that might signal more aggressive tactics.
(The 2016 Belmont Stakes Horses are listed in alphabetical order.)
1. Brody’s Cause: The Dale Romans-trained colt worked one mile in 1:42 at Churchill Downs last Saturday. The connections hope for additional speed to the expected field.
2. Cherry Wine: On the same day at Churchill, the stablemate of Brody’s Cause worked four furlongs in 49.60. Like Brody’s Cause, this contender lacks early foot and must adapt to the slower pace scenario
3. Creator: Two days ago, this closer worked five furlongs in 1:02 flat at Churchill Downs. Irad Ortiz Jr. will ride the Tapit colt for trainer Steve Asmussen. Note the South American and Irish influences underneath in his pedigree.
4. Destin: Todd Pletcher’s first Belmont hopeful will attempt to build on his sixth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby (GI). Last Friday, he worked five furlongs in 1:01.85.
5. Exaggerator: The Preakness hero galloped around Belmont yesterday for trainer Keith Desormeaux. From a pace standpoint, he faces a tough challenge if the probables list remains the same.
6. Governor Malibu: This runner worked five furlongs in 1:01.20 at Belmont last Friday. Trainer Christophe Clement won the race in 2014 with Tonalist.
7. Lani: Japan’s Belmont contender has been galloping at Belmont Park. He failed to hit the board in the Derby and Preakness, which would make a win in New York somewhat of an amazing (although improbable) story.
8. Stradivari: Todd Pletcher’s other Belmont hopeful went through a grueling pace scenario in the Preakness. While no updates seem readily apparent, most handicappers agree his speed is dangerous.
9. Suddenbreakingnews: The ridgling worked six furlongs in 1:12.40 at Churchill Downs last Sunday. Hall of Fame rider Mike Smith will take the mount. Will Smith encourage aggressive tactics?
10. Wild About Deb: Last week, the third-place finisher in the Peter Pan Stakes (GII) worked four furlongs in 49.60. Luckily for supporters, if he runs bettors will ignore him.