Biggest upset winner of the 2021 Triple Crown prep trail, the 72-1 shocker he pulled in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct was the largest in the history of New York's most important prep. But Cinderella's slipper didn't fit in the Kentucky Derby when 13th, some 16 lengths off the winnner. Trainer Todd Pletcher is a 3-time Belmont Stakes winner (2007, 2013, 2017). Jockey Kendrick Carmouche can become the first African-American jockey to win the Belmont Stakes in more than a century. Bourbonic employs a late-running style and is a maternal grandson of 2005 Belmont champ Afleet Alex.
The 2020 Champion 2-Year-Old suffered his first career defeat when a wide fourth in the Kentucky Derby, just a length off of Medina Spirit. That continued a perplexing run of Blue Grass winners who were defeated in the Derby, dating back to Strike the Gold's 1991 sweep. But the Blue Grass got a lift when Rombauer returned to win the Preakness, and that's a form boost for Essential Quality. This is a son of Tapit, who has had much fanfare in recent years as a sire of Belmont Stakes successes.
The 11-1 upset winner of the Preakness Stakes rallied for an emphatic, 3-1/2 length victory in his Triple Crown series debut. A Preakness Win & You're In qualifier from Golden Gate Fields' El Camino Real Derby, he's proven a quality colt on dirt, turf and synthetic surfaces. The Blue Grass Stakes third-place finisher is expected to get a rematch with his past conqueror Essential Quality in the Belmont. He loses jockey Flavien Prat to Hot Rod Charlie, but picks up Hall of Famer John Velazquez, who won the Derby this year on Medina Spirit, as well as the Belmont Stakes in 2007 & 2012.
Kentucky Derby third-place finisher drew alongside Medina Spirit in the stretch in Louisville, but could not quite seal the deal in a 1-length defeat. This year's Louisiana Derby produced 4 of the top-6 finishers in the Kentucky Derby, a feather in his cap winning that race in New Orleans. Trainer Doug O'Neill is a 2-time Kentucky Derby winner, owns a Preakness score as well, and will be looking for a personal Triple Crown if he can win his first Belmont Stakes. Jockey Flavien Prat, who rode him in Louisville, opts to ride him back in the Belmont even after piloting Rombauer to Preakness glory.
(Photo courtesy Tamarkuz Media)
Kentucky-bred, Japanese-raced runner makes his second Triple Crown appearance after a seventh-place Preakness finish. He also finished sixth on the international stage in the United Arab Emirates Derby behind fellow Belmont Stakes contender Rebel's Romance. Previously he won back-to-back races (maiden, allowance) in November and December at Hanshin Racecourse in Japan, both trips on dirt at 1-1/8 miles. His Preakness jockey Joel Rosario has opted instead to ride Santa Anita Derby winner Rock Your World in the Belmont.
Disappointing, 9th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby with a relatively clean trip despite the rail draw in Louisville. Gulfstream Park's Florida Derby winner turned the corner on his season in late February with a smashing, 11-length allowance win. Can he bounce back for trainer Todd Pletcher, who has won the Belmont Stakes 3 times overall (2007, 2013 and 2017)?
The wire-to-wire Santa Anita Derby winner tasted defeat for the first time in the Kentucky Derby when 17th after a troubled start. He made a smashing dirt debut April 3 in the SA Derby while stretching out beyond a mile for the first time. Rock Your World's sire Candy Ride is renowned for his versatility, and this colt has that. He did not debut until Jan. 1, so he's been playing catch up with his classmates. Jockey Joel Rosario returns to the saddle after piloting him in Louisville and France Go De Ina in the Preakness.
Blue-blooded colt was a $1 million yearling purchase and has one of the race's strongest pedigrees. Sire Curlin won the 2007 Preakness and was runner-up in that year's Belmont; damsire A.P. Indy was the 1992 Belmont champion and eventual Horse of the Year. Stakes-placed in the Withers at Aqueduct and the Peter Pan at Belmont, Overtook seeks his first stakes win. Jockey John Velazquez, who rode him in the Peter Pan, opted to ride Preakness winner Rombauer in the Belmont.