Belmont Stakes Odds 2014: Latest Vegas Betting Lines for Elmont Field

Chris RolingFeatured ColumnistJune 3, 2014

Belmont Stakes hopeful Ride On Curlin is hot walked after a workout at Belmont Park, Monday, June 2, 2014, in Elmont, N.Y. Ride On Curlin will challenge California Chrome, who hopes to be the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978 on Saturday. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
Julie Jacobson/Associated Press

Elmont, New York plays host to the 146th running of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, an event that will capture the imagination of the globe—as well as the wallets of the brave.

Conventional wisdom says to stay away. California Chrome is the sport's most dominant athlete at this juncture and has won a variety of races in dominant fashion, including the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.

While the quest for the first Triple Crown since 1978 is an intriguing narrative, understand that other contenders have favorable odds as well for good reason. Let's take a gander at the full list.

2014 Belmont Stakes Entry List and Vegas Odds
California ChromeSteven Coburn and Perry MartinArt Sherman1-1
Commanding CurveWest Point ThoroughbredsDallas Stewart15-2
CommissionerWinStar FarmTodd Pletcher33-1
General A RodSkychai Racing LLC and Starlight RacingMike MakerN/A
Kid CruzVina Del Mar Tb's and Black Swan Stb.Linda Rice40-1
MatterhornMrs. John Maginer, Michael Tabor and Derrick SmithTodd Pletcher33-1
Medal CountSpendthrift Farm LLCDale Romans14-1
MatuszakGeorge PrussinBill Mott40-1
Ride On CurlinDaniel J. DoughertyWilliam Gowan5-1
SamraatMy Meadowview FarmRichard Violette, Jr.20-1
Social InclusionRontos Racing StableManuel Azpurua33-1
TonalistRobert S. EvansChristophe Clement15-2
Wicked StrongCentennial FarmJames Jerkens9-1 Odds via OddsShark as of 6/2/14 at 3 p.m. ET

Note: Odds courtesy of


Breaking Down Top Favorites

California Chrome

Much has been painstakingly written about how California Chrome has never run a track as long as the one at Belmont Park and how major contenders sat out of the event in Baltimore and enter the proceedings in New York at full strength.

At this point, it's all white noise.

It matters little where the rags-to-riches story starts at this point. Since Victor Espinoza climbed into the saddle some races ago, California Chrome has morphed into the most dominant horse the sport has seen in more than a decade.

By all accounts, it has been business as usual in New York. Katherine Terrell of The Times-Picayune is just one analyst who has been impressed so far:

Until further notice, California Chrome is the safest bet around. Espinoza clearly understands how to negotiate traffic and get the absolute most out of the most athletically gifted horse in the field come Saturday, so those looking for an easy way to make coin need look no further.


Ride On Curlin

Garry Jones/Associated Press

Folks oft forget those who do not finish first, which seems to be the case with Ride On Curlin—the horse who was closest to upending California Chrome in the Preakness Stakes.

In fact, it is easy to forget that Ride On Curlin is a member of an exclusive club this year, as captured by Jay Privman of Daily Racing Form:

The scene in Baltimore was rather ugly as Ride On Curlin looked to be in contention near the final stretch, but it was readily apparent that he had expended his final surge entirely too early.

Perhaps there is a chance this will not occur on Saturday, as John Velazquez will ride in place of Joel Rosario. That change, in tandem with besting most of the field in the middle leg of the Triple Crown, may be what has caused the line to shift.

Count trainer Billy Gowan was one who believes. “I think he’s got a Grade I win in him,” Gowan said, via Tom Pedulla of The New York Times. “I’m just hoping it will be Saturday.”

Likeminded individuals surely enjoy the same confidence thanks to past performances and favorable odds. Ride On Curlin is not a horrible way to get risky on Saturday. 


Wicked Strong

Morry Gash/Associated Press

Wicked Strong entered the Kentucky Derby a favorite after a Grade 1 win at the Wood Memorial Stakes, but wound up in fourth place.

Now fully rested, Wicked Strong is back on the minds of bettors for all the right reasons.

By most accounts, Wicked Strong has had the look of the best horse in practice not named California Chrome, as Daily Racing Form's Mike Welsch helps to record:

The same distance questions apply to Wicked Strong as they do the large favorite on Saturday, but past successes and early training runs suggest Wicked Strong is poised to shock the field, provided the pole position is kind and early traffic can be successfully navigated.


Note: All info courtesy of Belmont Stakes' website unless otherwise specified.


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