Wednesday, June 8, 2011
The New York Monster
Well, the kids are out of school and the temperatures are already climbing into the 90's in most parts of the country. Which means that Summer is upon us and the Belmont Stakes is only a few days away. A dozen horses take the post this coming Saturday to take on the monster trip in New York. Out of the twelve, the top seven finishers in the Derby are back for a rematch (the first time this has ever happened).
Many are dubbing this a rubber match between the Derby winner, Animal Kingdom and the Preakness winner Shackleford. Even AK's owner Barry Irwin and Shakleford's trainer, Dale Romans have already taken verbal jabs at each other this week. With the Triple Crown out of the picture, this is shaping up to be a heavyweight prize fight, with the winner holding a slight edge of being the top three-year-old heading into the Summer.
2011 Belmont Stakes Picks:
Animal Kingdom: 2-1 ML favorite, just as he was in the Preakness. Since this horses first race on dirt he has taken off and not looked back.
Nehro: Finished second in his last three races. Improved speed ratings each time out. Coming in fresh off a five week layoff.
Mucho Macho Man: He was Mr. Consistency until the Preakness three weeks ago but threw a shoe. Finished third in the Derby and was closing on Nehro.
Master Of Hounds: First race on dirt was the Derby and worked his way through traffic coming from 15th to finish fifth. He is also fresh after skipping the Preakness.
Animal Kingdom: Has shown that he is a step above the rest of the field. Closing in his last two races, he was pulling away from the field in the Derby and just ran out of room in the Preakness. Bred for the distance, the Belmont should pose no problems for the Derby winner.
This race is a monster at 1 1/2 miles and has a history of craziness. While I will be confident heading to the window this coming Saturday, I would not at all be surprised to see any of the top seven Derby finishers take this race based on the history of the Belmont. Good luck to all and feel free to leave your comments....