Bet on The Belmont Stakes

Bet on The Belmont Stakes

The Belmont Stakes, also often known simply as The Belmont, is traditionally run over 1 1/2 miles (twelve furlongs) on the dirt at Belmont Park racetrack in Elmont, New York. The race is open to three-year-old colts, geldings, and fillies. As a true “test of the champion”, the Belmont is the longest of the three races.

The 2024 edition is scheduled for Saturday, June 8. It will be run at Saratoga Race Course for the first time ever, at a shortened distance of 1 1/4 miles, since the dirt track at Saratoga cannot host a 1 1/2-mile race. The Belmont Stakes will visit Saratoga in 2024 and 2025 while Belmont Park is rebuilt, and then the race is expected to return to its regular course and distance in 2026.

World-famous as part of the Triple Crown championship for American-based three-year-old horses, the Belmont Stakes holds the distinction as the third leg of the Triple Crown series. If a horse who won the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs and the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico comes to the Belmont, then the whole world watches the Belmont Stakes in hopes that there will be another champion for the ages.

Belmont Stakes

Belmont Stakes Racebooks

With a possible Triple Crown title for the winner, the Belmont Stakes is often the most-watched and wagered on race in the US thoroughbred season. Even when there isn’t a Triple Crown at stake, the demanding distance and the classy horses make sure that it is both a thrilling race and a great betting opportunity.

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Belmont Stakes Betting Odds

With the challenge of racing a tough 1 1/2 miles, even a Kentucky Derby winner is no sure bet to handle the Belmont, and often a new challenger steps up to contend for the win. That makes the chance of a good payday at long odds even better, and for the savvy handicapper, the fun of the Belmont is in finding that unknown longshot to score the upset. Look to our #1 recommended racebook at Bovada to find your favorite!

Belmont Stakes Odds Table

For those that are wanting to bet on the Belmont Stakes online, we have a variety of great oddsmakers providing betting lines for the big day. The Belmont Stakes odds were last updated on May 28, 2024:

Sierra LeoneTBA+200TBA
Seize the GreyTBA+550TBA
Honor MarieTBA+1000TBA
Thorpedo AnnaTBA+1200TBA
Mystik DanTBA+1200TBA

Make sure to keep watching the odds as the race gets closer. The field tends to firm up after the Preakness Stakes finishes, and that is when bettors can start making smart choices about who provides the best value in the race.

In terms of how to bet on the Belmont Stakes, we'll delve into that momentarily. Throughout this Belmont Stakes betting guide, we'll also explain previous years' races and how to find value in the odds. 

Belmont Stakes Handicapping

When handicapping the Belmont Stakes race, you can use trends that other Belmont Stakes winners have had in common in order to separate the contenders from the pretenders.

Stamina Pedigree

At the shortened 1 1/4-mile distance in 2024 and 2025, you'll see some form at the distance from horses who tried the Kentucky Derby. However, that's still only one race, and anyone who hasn't tried the Kentucky Derby almost certainly hasn't tried the Belmont trip. So, ability to handle the distance will still be a puzzle. If their form keeps improving as they have tried longer distances, that is a strong point in their favor, but to find those diamonds in the rough you have to look at the pedigree.

Look for horses whose sires, dams, or close relatives have done well over long distances. Especially if the horse is proven on dirt, then having close relatives who run well long on grass or dirt is fine. Some sires are very well known stamina merchants: four Tapit sons have won the Belmont Stakes, and others like Uncle Mo, Curlin, Awesome Again, and Arrogate have also produced recent winners.

Checking out the horses’ siblings out of the same dam can point out live runners, too. For example, in 2006 and 2007, Jazil and Rags to Riches won the Belmont. They were by different sires, Seeking the Gold and A. P. Indy, but both were out of the same mare named Better Than Honour!

Pace Makes the Race

A lot of times, handicappers get in the trap of thinking that a horse who keeps falling short will improve if he gets more distance in the Belmont Stakes. And, that is a recipe for failure. Perhaps distance will improve the horse, but pace is an important factor as well.

If the horse keeps falling short, even if there is a hot pace in front of them, it is more likely that the horse just does not like to win than the horse actually needs more distance. And, if the horse is not going to get much of a hot pace? Consider that horse for third or fourth place in trifectas or superfectas, but lean on horses with more tactical speed as your win bet candidates.

Class Matters

Even if the Kentucky Derby winner or Preakness Stakes winner does not always win the Belmont Stakes as well, a Belmont winner is typically a horse who has a lot of racing class. In addition to Triple Crown races, looking at horses who raced well in Grade 1 events like the Blue Grass, Florida Derby, Arkansas Derby, or even the Kentucky Oaks can point you to Belmont Stakes winners.

Belmont Stakes Bets

As is the case with all major horse racing events, you will have a large range of wagers to choose from in the Belmont Stakes. The most classic bets are the straight wagers: win bets, place bets, and show bets. These are excellent if you have a strong opinion about a single horse. If your horse wins, you cash a win bet. If he runs first or second, the place bet hits. If he runs third or better, the show bet cashes.

Some bettors also like to go after exotic wagers. Those can offer life-changing scores, though they are also more difficult to hit since they depend on more horses.

If your opinions are strong about multiple horses in the Belmont Stakes, consider building an intra-race exotic like an exacta, trifecta, or superfecta wager. You have to pick the first two, three, or four finishers in exact order but if you’re right, it pays! If you like horses in other stakes races before or after the Belmont, try a multi-race bet like a Daily Double, Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 5, or Pick 6!

2024 Belmont Stakes Contenders

The field for the 2024 running of the Belmont Stakes will be drawn Monday, June 3. On that day the post positions, morning lines, trainers, and jockeys will be final.

Still, the field is beginning to come together in a preliminary fashion. Between horses who do well in other Triple Crown races and horses who move forward in Prep races like the Peter Pan (G3), the Belmont can be a great place to find longshots. Just ask anyone who had a win bet on a horse like 70-1 winner Sarava or 38-1 winner Da’ Tara!

Triple Crown Trail

Both of the winners of the Triple Crown races are in conversation for the Belmont. D. Wayne Lukas has confirmed that Seize the Grey, winner of the Preakness Stakes, will point to the final jewel of the Triple Crown. He has proven tactical speed: he won the Preakness on the lead, but won the Pat Day Mile (G2) before that in a stalking spot. The front end will likely be more contested in the Belmont, but he is in the right form to try this and he may just be growing into his stamina pedigree.

Kenny McPeek has not committed Mystik Dan to the Belmont yet, but he remains in consideration. If he goes, he should be a threat. His win at the Kentucky Derby means he has won over the distance at which the Belmont will be run this year, and he likely gets a better pace setup than he did in the Preakness Stakes.

The likely favorite in the Belmont Stakes isn't the winner of either Triple Crown race. Instead, the chalk in the futures books is Sierra Leone, who missed by a nose to Mystik Dan in the Kentucky Derby. He has fired with a closing run in every single race he has started, and he is two noses from being perfect. His talent and stamina are well proven, and he should be a good fit for the Belmont.

Fierceness, the beaten favorite in the Kentucky Derby, will be out for redemption in the Belmont Stakes for trainer Todd Pletcher, a four-time winner of this race. Dornoch, Tuscan Gold, and Honor Marie are other familiar faces from the first and second legs of the Triple Crown who may turn up in the Belmont Stakes.

New Shooters

Kenny McPeek not only has the Kentucky Derby winner but also the Kentucky Oaks winner, and Thorpedo Anna is also possible in the Belmont. He does not plan on sending both her and Mystik Dan, but if he opts to send the Oaks heroine? She has been getting stronger with time and distance, and McPeek has already toppled males in a Triple Crown race with a good filly when Swiss Skydiver upset Authentic in the 2020 Preakness.

The Peter Pan (G3) produced 2023 Belmont Stakes winner Arcangelo, who was an up-and-comer at the time. The winner of the Peter Pan is another up-and-comer, Antiquarian. He bounced back from an off-the-board effort in the Louisiana Derby (G2) to bounce back and win in graded company, denying the more experienced The Wine Steward, who is also under consideration for the Belmont Stakes.

Batten Down is another interesting new face. Though he just broke his maiden, he is trained by the usually cautious Bill Mott, whose runners in ambitious spots like this tend to be live. He is by four-time Belmont-winning sire Tapit and out of champion mare Close Hatches, making him a full brother to the long-winded Tacitus.

Antiquarian is not the only new face from the Todd Pletcher barn in discussion for the Belmont. Impressive allowance winner Mindframe and Peter Pan third-place finisher Protective may go as well.

Did you know? 

Between Triple Crown winners Affirmed in 1978 and American Pharoah in 2015, 11 horses went into the Belmont with a shot at the title, only to falter in the race. In 2004, more than 120,000 fans crowded into the track to watch Smarty Jones take his shot, but were disappointed by a second-place finish. In 1998, Real Quiet lost his chance at immortality when he lost in a photo-finish nose to the hard charging Victory Gallop, the only Canadian-born horse to ever win, and the last foreign-born horse to do so.