Lo Duca: My Betting Card for 2019 Belmont Stakes Day
Catalina Fragoso, USA Today Sports.
- The 2019 Belmont Stakes takes place on Saturday, June 8 at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBC.
- Paul Lo Duca previews the entire day of races at Belmont Park.
The 2019 Triple Crown concludes Saturday evening with the 151st running of the Belmont Stakes.
But before we get to the headliner at Big Sandy, there’s a great day of racing on Saturday at Belmont Park.
We learned a lot from Friday’s races, where speed along the rail seemed to rule the day.
11:35 a.m. ET
I love the No. 1 Mo Gotcha (5-1) in the opener. He’s been training like a beast and this is a great value to start the day.
Pick: 1 over 2,5,6
12:11 p.m. ET
No. 4 No Mans Land (2-1) lays over this group but his trainer Richard Valentine is 1-24 on the year. He is the horse to beat in this field, but not the horse to trust. The No. 9 Uncle Artie (9-2) could be a tough out and will be on my card.
Pick: 4,9 over 1,2
12:47 p.m. ET
The Easy Goer Stakes features a field of only six horses but three of them are very fast. No. 6 Alwaysmining (6-5) found out War of Will was too much for him in the Preakness and the cut back in competition can help.
The No. 4 Outshine (9-5) had a bad break last time, but should factor in this one.
Pick: 4 over 5,6
1:22 p.m. ET
The first of the Grade I stakes is headlined by No. 4 Rushing Fall. She’s a superstar but is she beatable? I don’t think so. She’s fast early and there’s no pace in this one, so jockey Javier Castellano can dictate where to put her from the start and the mile distance is her best! Don’t overthink it, single the 4.
2:01 p.m. ET
The Grade 1 Ogden Phipps is light on entries but three of these horses can flat out run. The No. 2 Midnight Bisou (1-1) is by far the horse to beat but look out for the No. 1 Come Dancing (6-5), who keeps getting better and better.
My longshot is the No. 4 Escape Clause (9-2). She never gets respect but always runs a solid race. Don’t dismiss.
Pick: 2 over 1, 4
2:41 p.m. ET
The Grade I Jaipur should be an exciting race, headlined by No. 6 Disco Partner (3-1). Casual bettors and football fans will keep their eye on the No. 1 Undrafted (12-1), who is owned by Wes Welker, but my longshot in this race is No. 2 Om (8-1).
In the end, this one will likely come down to Disco Parnter and the No. 8 World of Trouble (1-1).
Pick: 8 over 1,2,5,6,7 in superfectas
3:22 p.m. ET
The Grade I Acorn Stakes is a tough nut to crack. No. 1 Serengeti Empress (5-2), the winner of the Kentucky Oaks, draws the rail but her rider left for the No. 7 Guarana (2-1) who was enormous in her only career race.
Those are two contenders but I love No. 9 Ce Ce (5-2) who ships in from California with great credentials.
Pick: 9 over 1,7,8
4:04 p.m. ET
There are a few horses worth considering in the prestigious Woody Stephens Stakes. The No. 1 Honest Mischief (6-1) is inexperienced but talented and the No. 4 Complexity (4-1) and No. 9 Mind Control (5-2) will draw money, but I love the No. 11 Wendell Fong (10-1) at a great price. The outside draw doesn’t worry me at all.
Pick: 11 over 1,4,9
4:46 p.m. ET
This could honestly be the best race you see all year. The best sprinter in the world, No. 3 Mitole (3-1) will take on Bob Baffert’s best horse, No. 2 McKinzie (5-2). Don’t forget about No. 4 Thunder Snow (5-1) who has over $16 million in his bank account. And last but not least, No. 7 Firenze Fire (4-1), who has never lost at Belmont.
Sometimes in a race like this, where four or five horses can win, you just need to take a stand and I’m going to do that with the dynamic duo of Baffert and jockey Mike Smith.
5:36 p.m. ET
The Grade 1 Manhattan goes through Chad Brown — plain and simple. He trains four entrants in this race and the No. 8 Bricks and Mortar (7-5) being the top dog. I’, using all of Brown’s horses here.
Pick: 8 over 1,3,7
Race 11: The Belmont Stakes
6:37 p.m. ET
The 151st running of the Belmont Stakes looks like a two-horse race on paper with the morning-line favorite No. 10 Tacitus (9-5) leading the charge. All accounts are that he’s training extremely well and I haven’t heard any expert who does not like him. No. 9 War of Will (2-1) finally draws an outside slot and I feel like he’s getting overlooked. The lack of speed in this race should help him contend.
I like the No. 8 Intrepid Heart (10-1) as an outsider. He’s got the pedigree to run the 1.5-mile distance and his trainer, Todd Pletcher, has won this race three times.
Pick: 8, 10 over 4,5,6,9
Race 1: 1256
Race 2: 1249
Race 3: 456
Race 4: 4
Race 5: 124
$72 for 50 cents
Race 7: 1789
Race 8: 14911
Race 9: 2
Race 11: 8910
$96 for 50 cents