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Belmont Stakes contenders
Posted: Friday June 09, 2000 09:44 AM
Sports Illustrated's Mark Beech ranks the top Belmont Stakes contenders as of June 8. Look for more horse racing analysis throughout the week.
| Belmont Rankings |
Rank || Horse || Odds || Trainer |
| 1 || Aptitude || 4-1 || Bobby Frankel |
| The Skinny: Frankel has said all along that this is his Belmont horse. Of course, he also
thinks Aptitude should have won the Derby. Still, the colt is fresh and has a
world of talent; he's easily the fastest horse in this race. Aptitude also has
the Belmont stamped all over his pedigree. He's the one to
| 2 || Impeachment || 8-1 || Todd Pletcher |
| The Skinny: One-run wonder specializes in passing tired horses, which he did to finish third
in both the Derby and Preakness. Those finishes command respect, but he needs a
hot pace to have a shot. And except for Hugh Hefner, this field isn't as fast as
the last two. Could still lug up for part of the
| 3 || Wheelaway || 10-1 || John Kimmel |
| The Skinny : A very interesting contender. He made an impressive move in the stretch in the
Derby, but veered in badly at the 1/8-pole, indicating he may have been tired.
He's rested for the Belmont, however, and ready to go. Might make things
interesting if Aptitude doesn't run to
| 4 || Postponed || 10-1 || Scotty Schulhofer |
| The Skinny : Has been steadily improving since finishing a disappointing fifth in the Florida
Derby March 11. He's also the only horse in the race who won his last start. It
would have to be a big jump, but he could surprise everyone if he continues to
| 5 || Unshaded || 10-1 || Carl Nafzger
| The Skinny : Is he in or is he out? Nafzger's never really seemed sure. That's because in
the Peter Pan, on May 27, his colt failed to improve off his victory in the
Lexington despite a five-week layoff. Hasn't shown that he's in Aptitude's
class, but a finish in the money wouldn't be a total
| 6 || Curule || 12-1 || Saeed bin Suroor |
| The Skinny : Unknown Godolphin runner acquitted himself well by finishing seventh in the
Derby, but made no bid for the lead in the stretch and never threatened the
winner. If he improves off that effort, a finish in the money isn't out of the
question. Don't look for him in the winner's circle.|
| 7 || Globalize || 15-1 || Jerry Hollendorfer |
| The Skinny : Missed the Derby after he was injured during a workout two days before the race.
He ran well in the Peter Pan Stakes on May 27, and might be prepared to move
forward, but he's got a ways to go before he beats the best in this
| 8 || Appearing Now || 20-1 || Juan Ortiz |
| The Skinny Finished fifth in the Wood, nearly three lengths behind Aptitude. Has shown modest improvement this spring, and has never really run poorly in his career (three wins in six starts). Won't win, but if you want a blue-plate special long shot to complete your exotic wager, he might be the one.|
| 9 || Tahkodha Hills || 25-1 || Ralph Ziadie |
| The Skinny : Another colt who seems to be improving at the right time. In Flamingo Stakes,
however, he finished nearly 11 lengths behind Trippi, who was 11th in the Derby.
Before that, he lost in the Florida Derby by 10 to Hal's Hope -- who lost the
Derby by 24 and the Preakness by 39.
| 10 || Commendable || 25-1 || D. Wayne Lukas |
| The Skinny : His form was already on the downswing when he ran a career-worst race and
finished 17th in the Derby. Other than the fact that he's rested and ran much
better early in the year, I see no reason to recommend him
| 11 || Hugh Hefner || 30-1 || Martin Jones |
| The Skinny : He's the speed in this race, and speed horses don't usually fare well in the
Belmont. That said, he ran fairly well in the Preakness and deserves some
respect here. I'd really like him if the race were half as long, but it's not,
so he's got no
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