The 145th running of the Belmont Stakes will be the final leg of the Triple Crown, but a rainy forecast for Belmont Park on Saturday will make it tough on the underdogs to pull off an upset.
Weather.com warns of flooding in the area, which is mainly because of Tropical Storm Andrea. The system is making its way up the coast, and the storm is going to make its way through New York on Saturday.
Officials are doing everything they can to keep the track in as good of shape as possible and have even sealed the track until the race gets closer, according to Frank Angst of BloodHorse.com.
With inclement weather for much of the weekend, how will it affect the race?
For starters, the favorites will have an even better chance of winning. Kentucky Derby winner Orb and the Preakness Stakes winner Oxbow are the favorites, and their chances get better as the weather gets worse.
Long shots like Palace Malice, Will Take Charge and Incognito were sleepers to crack the top three, but those odds are taking a hit as the course gets sloppier.
Racing on a normal surface makes it an even field. When the track gets sloppy, the stronger horses will be able to prevail.
Orb already won one leg of the Triple Crown and was favored to win the Preakness. Bovada lists him at 7-to-2 odds, which makes him the favorite at Belmont Park.
There is a 14-horse field, but not many horses are drawing a lot of pre-race buzz.
The Belmont Stakes is also the longest race of the Triple Crown. The 1.5-mile track should see the leaders separate from the rest of the pack as the weaker ones get caught up in the conditions.
Speedier horses will be at a disadvantage because strength will be key if conditions are bad. More energy will be used in tougher conditions, which will make it tougher on the smaller horses.
The damp conditions could be the deciding factor in the race.
There will be time for the crew to work on the track before the race and prepare it so that it is at least in decent condition. If the rain lasts longer than expected, the crew will have even more work to do.
Although Orb will benefit from being the best horse, the underdogs will have a tough time beating him. He will use his strength to pull away from the pack and leave the other horses behind.
Weather will be a factor in the Belmont Stakes, and the favorites will benefit from using their strength over the long track at Belmont Park.
All information is from HorseRacingNation.com unless otherwise noted.
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