Belmont Stakes 2014 Field: Handicapping the Horses at Belmont Park

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Belmont Stakes 2014 Field: Handicapping the Horses at Belmont Park
Julie Jacobson/Associated Press

The Belmont Stakes is the ultimate test in horse racing. Run on a mile-and-a-half-long track, the long stretch has played host to many triumphant victories and crushing defeats over the years. On Saturday, California Chrome will get one or the other.

The ghosts of racing's past haunt Belmont Park. From Secretariat's tremendous 31-length score to capture the Triple Crown in 1973 to the wave of silence that fell across the entire grandstand when Birdstone denied Smarty Jones his chance at immortality in 2004, there are few tracks as rich in history as Belmont Park.

Handicapping the 2014 Belmont Stakes, especially with a Triple Crown on the line, can be a tricky proposition. It is easy to get swayed by sentiment in the hopes that after 36 years the Triple Crown drought will finally be over.

With a field of 11highlighted, of course, by California Chromethis year's iteration of the Belmont Stakes promises to be one for the ages. Here is a look at the contenders, the pretenders and the dark horses that could surprise the favorite.

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