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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing


A field of 10 has been entered for the 152nd running of the history making Belmont Stakes, first leg of the 2020 Triple Crown to be run at a mile and an eighth.

The field, in post position order with early line odds and riding assignments:

1-TAP IT TO WIN 6-1 John Velazquez

2-SOLE VOLANTE 9-2 Luca Panici

3-MAX PLAYER 15-1 Joel Rosario

4-MODERNIST 15-1 Junior Alvarado

5-FARMINGTON ROAD 15-1 Javier Castellano

6-FORE LEFT 30-1 Jose Ortiz

7-JUNGLE RUNNER 50-1 Reylu Gutierrez

8-TIZ THE LAW 6-5 Manny Franco

9-DR POST 5-1 Irad Ortiz Jr.

10-PNEUMATIC 8-1 Ricardo Santana Jr.

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19 Responses

  1. Posted my reaction in another thread – moving it here:

    Two interesting developments off the Belmont Stakes draw; Tap It To Win drawing the rail, and Tiz The Law having Irad’s mount in the stall to his immediate outside. I think going into a NYRA race as a strong post time favorite, the last thing I really want to see is Irad Ortiz right on my outside with a horse with a similar running style to mine. We will be seeing some race riding on Saturday.

    1. Doc, two good observations: Maybe the rail draw results in a change in tactics. Johnny breaks and rates? Also, I wouldn’t want Irad on my right flank on a horse with a similar style for that long run down the backside. Most stakes, for whatever reason, almost always turns out to be a rider’s race…

  2. 8- 1-2-3-9 and 1239-8 plus minor adjustments from the $ board,Please don t let it be a romp after so much time and expectations !! The sports needs it to be Exciting!!

    1. Pps: Sole Volante,flying sun, and 3 my WP longies.

      May the horses be with you…

    1. Me too, Den, and the draw with their riders and styles makes things very interesting…

  3. BAD press PR release from Pera eating that some 21,Yes 21,horses have recently died within Belmonts Park boundaries.Mostly from pre existing bone problems which were temporarily ” relieved” with different types of Meds..My wife ,a former Icu,Mcu nurse x over 30 yrs and an avid domestic animals lover,protector,Insisted that i leave this ugly,semi hidden note,just Like when surgeons screw ho in the surgery rooms.Facts are facts.Everyone Is addicted to pills that cover major problems,,but they wont solve Any problems or cure ! They just hide it,temporarily, while the body,mind and Heart Suffer.😗

    1. Anyone and everyone familiar with this site knows that we advocate for federal regulation and a cessation of raceday medications and will continue to do so, so there’s that.

  4. The Belmont Stakes; long in history, tradition, and the race at 1 1/2 miles that truly rewarded the winners (and their owners) with long-term recognition. The Belmont Stakes, the last leg of the awesome Triple Crown, Thoroughbred racing’s jewel.

    This year’s Belmont Stakes is tarnished, has been violated, and is simply another race at a shorter distance that will be totally ignored by
    the media and me, again, just another race. Coming before the Kentucky Derby and Preakness should make it clear to all followers of
    Thoroughbred racing that it’s all about money and that breeders, owners, and track management are all huddled together – f–k tradition, history, and all the prior winners of the Belmont Stakes.

    As to the entrants. I bet on the platers everyday, yet I am unfamiliar with most of the blue-bloods entered. Think Jack and Jill standing on a corner in Winslow, Az. , or anyone on any street corner is familiar with any aspect of this years Belmont Stakes?

    If anyone who follows Thoroughbred racing bets on this race, shame on you.

    1. Will have to place my wager through a beard. Wouldn’t want anyone to know that I bet on the Belmont. I’m so ashamed…

  5. Mr. Pricci: Being a well-known turf writer I expected more of you: that you would put history, tradition, and respect for the Triple Crown behind your need to ‘get a bet down’ on this year’s former last leg of the TC has me losing respect for you. If you bet the Belmont Stakes you have no interest in keeping the TC as it was for decades. Shame on you!

  6. I’m partially with you, Wendell. What they are trying to pass off as the Belmont Stakes is just another race.
    But there’s nothing wrong with betting “just another race,” a point you have made repeatedly over the years.
    If Saturday’s race can be billed as the Belmont Stakes, any 7f race at Churchill can be sold as the Kentucky Derby (same 3f difference).

  7. Mr. Jicha: ‘partially with you’? Your red and I am blue, not blue deep purple, so far left that when gas gauges used to be a visual gauge (E to F) one couldn’t find me as I would be out-of-sight to the left of E (empty Alice) on the gauge.

    Anyway, anyone who’s dad loved Charlie Boy, is a friend of mine.

    What is going on now within the Thoroughbred industry’s desire to get back to normal is the destruction of all that it used to be.

    Me, I bet any and every racetrack operating on any day. But, I have a respect for the past. To have the Belmont Stakes this coming weekend makes me want to vomit! Need a Foster’s immediately.

  8. wmc,
    Your humorous gas gauge analogy almost made me spill my coffee (Choc full o’ nuts, BTW). Hope you eventually succeed. LOL

    I will play the Belmont Stakes this year because it seems to offer an opportunity to win a lot with only a little put at risk, and because boycotting the race independently accomplishes nothing.

    Change and flexibility are indeed required in this year of unprecedented uncertainty, but the reduction in distance was unnecessary and insulting. Even a match race including Tiz the Law at 12f would have been preferable IMO.

  9. Mr. Ed: Coffee? This time of day? Try Foster’s, it steadies the hand. Your comment on boycotting has me trying to recall what was in vogue here at HRI a year or so ago, or five years ago; that ‘boycotting the race independently accomplishes nothing’ doesn’t sound like you.

    Ya know, Mr. Ed, have you given any thought as to your contribution to the future of Thoroughbred racing? Just what is your contribution? A few dime bets trying to win the pick something? Does Thoroughbred racing need bettors who merely bet dimes or fifty-cent exotic wagers? But, I don’t blame you at all, as just about all racetracks across this country could careless about handle as their purses are funded from casino dole or sponsors; do these tracks give a hoot about on-track attendance? Isn’t it obvious that on-track patrons are simply an annoyance that should be (not must, Alice) casually addressed.

    Breeders, wealthy owners, and a few trainers are really on role, right before your eyes, as you try to cash a ticket for a few bucks.

  10. wmc,
    I have indeed been disabused of my former belief that wagering boycotts without high-recognizable national and legitimate horseplayer representation and leadership can achieve their desired impact.

    You are the only individual I have ever even heard of who bases their contribution to racing on the average cost of their tickets purchased per race. Perhaps the steadying effect of Fosters on your hands extends to other parts of your anatomy.

  11. Mr. Ed: What other contribution to Thoroughbred racing is there for ‘cappers like me than to bet? At one time we were appreciated by track management. No longer. Us serious bettors are no longer necessary for racetracks to survive financially, as they simply do not need our money. NYRA, Churchill, and the Stronach tracks are on both sides of the fence.

    They take bets at the tracks they operate and they ‘book’ bets via their ADW hubs; then the suits go to the mail box for the weekly check from the casino or sponsor. Takeout on handle? Who needs it? Monoply? What’s that? Something wrong here? Duh!

    Yea, Foster’s gives me a steady hand to wipe my butt. A hundred or so years ago, when I was drinking Rheingold, Schlitz, Narraganset green slime, et cetera I needed a steady hand to do other things.

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