Edited NTRA Release ― John and Diane Fradkin’s Grade 1 Preakness Stakes winner Rombauer has a one-point lead over Godolphin’s Essential Quality in the latest National Thoroughbred Racing Association Top Three-Year-Old Poll, leading five of the top 10 ranked horses who will be starting in Saturday’s Grade 1, 153rd Belmont Stakes presented by NYRA Bets at Belmont Park.
The final NTRA Top Three-Year-Old-Poll will be released next Monday, June 7, so Saturday’s Belmont Stakes will have a definitive impact as to which horse finishes with the No. 1 ranking.
Rombauer, trained by Michael McCarthy, is the 3-1 second choice on the Belmont Stakes morning line. Rombauer received eight first-place votes and 258 points. Godolphin’s Essential Quality, fourth as the favorite in the Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve, has 12 first-place votes and 257 points. Trained by Brad Cox, Essential Quality is the 2-1 morning line favorite in the Belmont. Juddmonte’s Mandaloun, also trained by Cox, is in third place with four first-place votes and 213 points. Roadrunner Racing, Boat Racing, Strauss Bros Racing and Gainesway Thoroughbreds’ Hot Rod Charlie, third in the Kentucky Derby, is in fourth place. Trained by Doug O’Neill, Hot Rod Charlie, the 7-2 third choice in the Belmont, has 211 points. Zedan Racing’s Medina Spirit, third in the Preakness after winning the Kentucky Derby, is in fifth place. Trained by Bob Baffert, Medina Spirit has six first-place votes and 177 points.
Winchell Thoroughbreds’ Midnight Bourbon, second in the Preakness, is in sixth place. Trained by Steve Asmussen, Midnight Bourbon has 158 points. Shadwell Stable’s undefeated filly, Malathaat, winner of the Grade 1 Longines Kentucky Oaks, is in seventh place. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Malathaat has 145 points. Another Asmussen-trained runner, Kirk and Judy Robison’s Jackie’s Warrior, who won the Grade 2 Pat Day Mile presented by LG&E and KU and is entered in Saturday’s Grade 1 Woody Stephens at Belmont, is in eighth place with 63 points. Two other Belmont Stakes starters complete the top 10. Hronis Racing and Talla Racing’s Rock Your World, winner of the Grade 1 Runhappy Santa Anita Derby, is in ninth place with 51 points. Rock Your World is listed at 9-2 on the morning line for the Belmont. St. Elias Stable’s Known Agenda, trained by Todd Pletcher, is in 10th place with 37 points. Known Agenda is 6-1 on the morning line for the Belmont.
Godolphin’s 4-year-old Mystic Guide retains the No. 1 rating in the NTRA National Thoroughbred Poll for older horses. Winner of the Group 1 Dubai World Cup at Meydan on March 27, Mystic Guide had his second workout since the World Cup, breezing five furlongs in 1:01.8 on Saturday at Fair Hill in Maryland. Trained by Mike Stidham, Mystic Guide received 28 first-place votes and 284 points. Now tied in second place with 194 points apiece are Korea Racing Authority’s 5-year-old Knicks Go, with three first-place votes, and Robert and Lawana Low’s 4-year-old Colonel Liam. Trained by Brad Cox, Knicks Go, winner of the Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup, is scheduled to start in Saturday’s Grade 1 Hill ‘N’ Dale Metropolitan Handicap at Belmont Park. Colonel Liam, trained by Todd Pletcher, finished in a dead heat for first with Domestic Spending in the Grade 1 Old Forester Bourbon Turf Classic Stakes at Churchill Downs. Colonial Liam drew post 10 for Saturday’s Grade 1 Resorts Casino World Manhattan Stakes at Belmont. The 4-year-old Charlatan, runner-up in the Group 1 Saudi Cup, drops to fourth place with 166 points. My Racehorse, Spendthrift Farm LLC and Madaket Stables’ Monomoy Girl, the 2020 older dirt female Eclipse Award-winner, remains in fifth place with 156 points. Godolphin’s 4-year-old Maxfield, trained by Brendan Walsh, jumps from eighth to sixth place this week with one first-place vote and 131 points. St. George Stable’s 5-year-old mare Letruska (123 points), winner of Oaklawn’s Grade 1 Grade Apple Blossom, falls one position to seventh place. The 4-year-old Gamine, last year’s champion female sprinter, drops from sixth to eighth place. Owned by Michael Lund Peterson and trained by Bob Baffert, Gamine has one first-place vote and 118 points. The Cox-trained 4-year-old filly Shedaresthedevil (89 points), winner of Churchill’s Grade 1 La Troienne Stakes, stays in ninth place. Completing the top 10 is Klaravich Stable’s 4-year-old Domestic Spending (57 points), who is also entered in Saturday’s Manhattan for trainer Chad Brown.
The NTRA Top Thoroughbred polls are the sport’s most comprehensive surveys of experts. Every week eligible journalists and broadcasters cast votes for their top 10 horses, with points awarded on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. All horses that have raced in the U.S., are in training in the U.S., or are known to be pointing to a major event in the U.S. are eligible for the NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll. Voting in the Top Three-Year-Old Thoroughbred Poll concludes following the Belmont Stakes on June 5 and the Top Thoroughbred Poll is scheduled to be conducted through Nov. 6.