Seth Wenig/Associated Press
The 2020 Triple Crown season is finally here—seven weeks later than it was supposed to get started.
The coronavirus pandemic saw the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, typically held on the first and third Saturdays of May, postponed until Sept. 5 and Oct. 3, respectively. It means the Belmont Stakes, usually the third and final Triple Crown race, is starting things off, with the event set to take place Saturday afternoon.
While we have typically seen some of the horses participating in the Belmont Stakes in action on a national stage at least once before, that’s not the case this year—what’s more, many of the thoroughbreds haven’t even raced since March or April.
After a look at the post lineup and current odds for the race, we will make some final predictions.
Belmont Stakes Post Lineup and Odds
1. Tap It to Win: 6-1
2. Sole Volante: 9-2
3. Max Player: 15-1
4. Modernist: 15-1
5. Farmington Road: 15-1
6. Fore Left: 30-1
7. Jungle Runner: 50-1
8. Tiz the Law: 6-5
9. Dr Post: 5-1
10. Pneumatic: 8-1
Odds according to Vegas Insider.
Belmont Stakes Predictions
Because these horses haven’t been built up for the typical distance of the Belmont Stakes, this year’s race has been shortened from 1 ½ miles to 1 ⅛ miles. Because of that, as well as the fact we didn’t get to see these horses in the Kentucky Derby and/or the Preakness Stakes, the Belmont is even tougher to predict.
Tiz the Law is the favorite, and it’s likely he will have a strong showing even if he doesn’t win. He’s won four of his five career races, including his most recent, the Florida Derby on March 28.
While Tiz the Law is accomplished despite limited action, there are several other strong horses in the field that will likely give him some competition. That group includes Sole Volante, Dr Post and Tap It to Win, all of whom have a maximum of 6-1 odds.
No matter which horse ends up on top, he will be the winner of perhaps the most unusual Belmont Stakes in the long history of the race, which is being run for the 152nd time.
“I don’t think there is any question that at the end of 2020, you can put a big asterisk by the whole year, and the Triple Crown is part of that,” said Todd Pletcher, the trainer for Dr Post and Farmington Road, according to John Cherwa of the Los Angeles Times. “It’s not going to be the same, it’s going to spread out over a much different time frame and different distances and different orders. It goes without saying it’s a non-traditional Triple Crown series.”
Pletcher has trained three past Belmont winners, so if anyone can upset Tiz the Law, it may be one of his two horses. Dr Post (5-1) has the better odds of the duo and has won two of his three career races, both of which took place at Gulfstream Park earlier this year.
The prediction here is that the race will come down to Tiz the Law and Dr Post, who will be starting next to each other in the Nos. 8 and 9 posts, respectively. If they both get off to good starts, they could put some distance between themselves and the rest of the field.
And while Tiz the Law is a great horse, Dr Post hasn’t shown his full potential and may have benefited from the extra time to train. Expect Dr Post to outlast Tiz the Law in the final stretch to give Pletcher his fourth win at the Belmont Stakes.
Prediction: Dr Post holds off Tiz the Law for the upset win.