Tuesday, June 7, 2011

2011 Belmont Stakes: Preview

The third leg of the Triple Crown is this Saturday and looks to be a good one. The top 7 finishers of the KY Derby are probables along with a few new shooters. And to me, it looks like the winner will come from one of the horses that ran in the Derby which includes Animal Kingdom, Nehro, Mucho Macho Man, Shackleford, Master of Hounds, Santiva and Brilliant Speed. AK should be very tough with his strong late kick and will most certainly be coming hard in the lane nearing the wire. Master of Hounds has the pedigree to excel at this distance as well with his sire producing a Belmont winner in LDK and his bms, Sadler's Wells, is a chef-de-race producing winners at 10-12f hence the Classic/Solid designation. MoH also has Lyphard, another cdr with a Classic designation, in his immediate pedigree and sire of MoH's 2nd dam. So, there's plenty of stamina in MoH's pedigree. Nehro, even though he's by Mineshaft who provides stamina, seems to be best at or around 10f, but he is very talented and classy. MMM is also a horse that seems like he's best at 10f and less, but he's a grinder and doesn't get tired. 12f is definitely too far for Shackleford as he barely hung on for 4th at 10f in the Derby. Santiva is most certainly a dirt horse as his past 2 races on said surface have been his highest BSFs to date. He gets plenty of stamina from his sire and could be a factor at this distance. And lastly, BS arguably has the best pedigree for this distance and has a slew of Belmont winners and producers in his immediate family. And according to drf and BS's past performances, he was only 5.5 lengths from AK in the Derby. This guy could be dangerous in this spot!

My top 5 horses are:

1. Animal Kingdom
2. Nehro
3. Master of Hounds
4. Mucho Macho Man
5. Brilliant Speed

Stay tuned for the 'Belmont Blind Handicap'


  1. I think they way you did the last blind is fine. If you want to add races other than graded's, that's fine too.

  2. "I'm not worried about Shackleford. I'm worried about Mucho Macho Man. He's the horse to beat." -- Barry Irwin, Animal Kingdom owner.

    There are a few reasons why I like MMM. One, he gets new shoes and he had a great work in those shoes at Belmont (And Curlin was successful in those type of shoes). Losing a front shoe is definitely a legitimate excuse. It wasn't the distance because he ran very well at 10f. Two, he was running very well nearing the wire in the Derby and would've caught Nehro had it been a lil longer. Three, he officially turns 3 one week from today (Wednesday, June 15), so he's still maturing and has plenty of room to improve. Put it this way, it's like the average horse who's born earlier in the year, say Feb. or March, running in Feb. or March. For example, it's like Shackleford, who was born in late Feb., running at that time. Even though they don't have the same starts at the time they turned 3, they're still similar in terms of maturation. Anyway, you know what I mean. I don't see him winning at 12f, though you never know, but I see him running well and finishing in the top 4 for sure! Also, I don't see Nehro winning at 12f, but will most certainly be there in the stretch. I think it sets up the best for AK. I mean, if you go back and watch both the Derby and Preakness, AK was coming hard nearing the wire and that was at 10 and 9.5f, so the added distance will only help this guy. It also looks like BS and Santiva could have moved up with more distance as well. So, I would definitely use them in the exotics. This one's tougher than I originally thought! I'm starting to like BS and Santiva a lil more than MOH, now.

  3. I might play one of them like this:


    Maybe. Just messin' around with it right now.

  4. I'm going to go over the pedigrees again. Of course, in this race stamina takes precedence over speed and in that light, I think Animal Kingdom, Master Of Hounds, Brilliant Speed and Santiva look the best on paper.

    I've got questions about Nehro and Mucho Macho Man. Nehro is really good but the fact is that other than his third MSW @ 1M, he's "always a bridesmaid and never a bride." I will most likely have him starting in the two slot and down the line.

    MMM's bottom is full of sprinters. Two Punch never ran further than 7f's and all his wins were @ 6f's. Ponche's longest win(s) were @ 1 1/16 (3 wins) and Ponche De Leona's longest win was @ 1 1/8. So, in my view, MMM has already outshined his pedigree and needless to say, Barry Irwin knows alot more than I do. If he can just keep his shoes intact he'll be a threat. Finally, I think his running style is well suited for the distance. He doesn't seem to tire such as in the case of Flashpoint (who even looks like Two Punch), regardless of his pedigree.

    Btw, Mike Shutty's bomber picks are Santiva, Prime Cut and Brilliant Speed. Then I read an article on HRN re Sagamore Farm and Monzon's stamina so it should be a good race.

    If you've got rags on all the contenders, you might throw them into the blind as well.

  5. Harlan's Hello is out.

  6. Yeah, I saw that on drf about HH. I'm not big on Prime Cut, but I do like Santiva and BS the more I look at the race. So, I think I'm liking AK, Nehro, MMM, Santiva, BS and MOH the best out of the 12 probable starters. It should be a really good race!

  7. Post Preakness Rags:


  8. The field is set!

    Post Horse Trainer Jockey Last start Watchmaker
    Odds Track Odds

    #1 Master of Hounds....10-1
    #2 Stay Thirsty........20-1
    #3 Ruler On Ice........20-1
    #4 Santiva.............15-1
    #5 Brilliant Speed.....15-1
    #6 Nehro................4-1
    #7 Monzon..............30-1
    #8 Prime Cut...........15-1
    #9 Animal Kingdom.......2-1
    #10 Mucho Macho Man....10-1
    #11 Isn't He Perfect...30-1
    #12 Shackleford.........9-2

  9. Pre Derby Rags:


  10. I really like Santiva and BS at 15-1 and MMM at 10-1!

  11. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HI2v2hvi8-M

  12. More PP's:

  13. Just now posted the "2011 Belmont Stakes: The Blind Handicap"!!