Favorites took the collar on opening day at Belmont Park's 100th anniversay on Wednesday, the first day of race-day security barn measures for all New York Racing Association races.
Belmont Park announced today a presenting sponsor for this year's Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick - On May 4, 2005, it will be 100 years to the day since Belmont Park opened its doors to the public for the first time.
With New York losing nearly $3 million a day, Gov. George Pataki Feb. 15 told legislative leaders he wants a quick resolution to a dispute that has kept casino operations from opening at Aqueduct and Yonkers racetracks.
A New York state authority that supports Standardbred purses and breeding has lax internal financial controls, according to an audit released Tuesday by state Comptroller Alan Hevesi.
Premier Radio Networks won the Media Eclipse Award in the audio and multi-media Internet category for its live coverage of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.
NBC Sports won the Eclipse Award for National Television – Live Racing for its production of the 2004 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) the National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Jan. 4.
December or no December, the journey to Louisville has officially begun. Just ask any trainer with a promising 2-year-old if the lure of the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) hasn't already taken a firm hold. Over the past 10 days we've seen several exciting hopefuls emerge. And there's still that little matter of crowning a champ this weekend.
For the second year in a row, the New York Racing Association is moving a major 2-year-old stakes at Saratoga. The changes were part of the completed 2005 stakes schedule announced Dec. 9.
If you've had enough of presidential campaigns and elections, you might want to try your hand at predicting the winner of Thoroughbred racing's Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year.
Marylou Whitney's Birdstone, winner of the Belmont (gr. I) and Travers Stakes (gr. I) this year, has been retired after a radiograph taken Nov. 2 revealed a P-1 medial chip in the colt's left front ankle.
by John Mucciolo - A total of 57 races were contested over the past six racing days, and favorites continue to perform well. With 23 top betting selections crossing the wire first (40 percent), and 12 second choices winning (21 percent), longshot players were once again up against it at Belmont.
Negotiations are underway to resolve the bitter simulcasting dispute between the New York Racing Association and a consortium of Northeast racetracks, as both sides seek to insist the other is being more financially hurt by the controversy.
Darley Stable's Balletto and Gary Zweling's Play with Fire face off again in Saturday's 57th running of the Frizette Stakes (gr. I) for 2-year-old fillies at Belmont.
Stroll, who finished second in his first start after three months on the sidelines, heads a field of eight in Saturday's Kelso Stakes (gr. IIT) at Belmont. For 3-year-olds and up, the race is a mile on the Belmont turf and carried a $350,000 purse.
by John Mucciolo - A quartet of Grade 1 races were contested on Saturday at Belmont Park, and we will go in the order of what we think were the most impressive performances of the weekend's riches.
Sophomore turf sensation Kitten's Joy gets the ultimate test Saturday, facing a tough group of seasoned older horses in the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational (gr. IT) at Belmont Park. Leg two of the NTRA's National Pick 4, the Turf Classic will be shown live on ESPN and has an approximate post time of 5:12 p.m. EDT.
The NTRA National Pick 4 wager, offered in conjunction with the "NTRA Super Saturday" telecasts airing on ABC and ESPN, makes its fifth and final appearance of the year Saturday. Three grade I stakes from Belmont Park: the Jockey Club Gold Cup, the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational, and the Vosburgh Stakes; along with the Yellow Ribbon Stakes from Oak Tree at Santa Anita make up the wager.
Following two straight runner-up finishes in allowances races, trainer Billy Turner will start Althea Richards' Finery in a stakes for the first time, Saturday's grade III, $150,000 Noble Damsel for fillies and mares at one mile on the turf at Belmont.
The one-two-three finishers in Monmouth's Sapling Stakes (gr. III) will line up against each other again Sunday in the Belmont Futurity (gr. II).
Sense of Style, a convincing winner of the seven-furlong Spinaway Stakes (gr. II) at Saratoga last month, figures to be a very short price against five rivals in Sunday's Matron Stakes (gr. I) at a mile at Belmont Park.
Our Sugar Bear Stable's three-time stakes winner Travelator is the 116-pound highweight in the 10th running of the $100,000 Floral Park Handicap (gr. III) at Belmont Park. Topping a field of five fillies and mares set to travel the 6 furlongs, the Stanley Hough-trained runner comes back only seven days after stepping up in class in an eight-length loss Sept. 11 in the Endine Handicap (gr. III) at Delaware Park
Belmont Park's Fall meeting, which opens its 33-day season on Sept. 10, boasts 13 grade I stakes and $10.5 million in overall stakes money,.
By Gary McMillen -- Sometimes it takes a thorn to get rid of a splinter. Like a Maryland blue crab dropped out of a basket, I scurried to the safety of my office. There were questions I needed to ask myself. Smarty Jones did not give me what I wanted but maybe he gave me what I needed.
TVG posted the highest quarterly handle in company history for the quarter that ended June 30, Ryan O'Hara, TVG president announced Friday. Keys to the second quarter figures were record wagering of $5.2 million on Kentucky Derby day (May 1) and $3.2 million on Belmont Stakes day (June 5).
Saturday's $500,000 Coaching Club American Oaks (gr. I), reduced in distance once again to 1 1/4 miles, drew a field of six 3-year-old fillies, highlighted by another showdown between Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) winner Ashado and Mother Goose (gr. I) winner Stellar Jayne.
Sackatoga Stable's Funny Cide, who just two weeks ago was beaten a head in the $500,000 MassCap (gr. II) at Suffolk Downs, has drawn the rail for Saturday's Suburban Handicap (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
By Lenny Shulman -- As the Thoroughbred tribe dispersed from its heady gathering at Belmont Park June 5, still flush with more media coverage than it could have dreamed, the question in everyone's head became, "How do we keep this tidal wave of interest going?"
Minge Cove was beaten 2 1/2 lengths in the Herecomesthebride after a troubled trip. The winner, Lucifer's Stone, had just taken an entry-level allowance and owned a decided experience edge. When the two meet again in Sunday's $100,000 Sands Point Stakes (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-old fillies at nine furlongs on grass, Minge Cove might have a better shot .
Congrats, who is unbeaten in two starts this year, is one of seven entered for Saturday's 1 1/8-mile Brooklyn Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park.
By Steve Haskin -- Birdstone wins the Belmont, denies Smarty Jones the Triple Crown.
Notes on Belmont Stakes (gr. I) runners other than the Nick Zito-trainer Birdstone and Royal Assault and Smarty Jones, which have been reported in other stories.
Records in attendance and handle for Belmont Park and the New York Racing Association (NYRA) were set Saturday as Birdstone upset heavily-favored Smarty Jones in the 136th running of the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) before a crowd of 120,139. The previous attendance record was 103,222 during the Belmont Stakes two years ago.
Although he has trained winners of nearly every major race in North America, including the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) twice, trainer Nick Zito said Saturday's victory by Birdstone in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) was the highlight of his career.
Trainer John Servis said he was "disappointed" for owners Roy and Patricia Chapman that Smarty Jones' bid for the Visa Triple Crown Challenge came up short when he finished a gutsy second to Birdstone in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) but that he was proud of the effort given by the colt Saturday.
NBC Sports' coverage of Saturday's 136th Belmont Stakes June 5 generated the event's highest overnight rating in 27 years.
Reserved early, Meteor Storm and Jose Valdivia Jr. came flying down the outside of the course to win the $400,000 Manhattan Handicap (gr. IT) Saturday on the Belmont Park turf.
Saturday's Belmont Stakes (gr. I) win by 36-1 shot Birdstone ended previously unbeaten Smarty Jones' Visa Triple Crown hopes and delivered a 13.4 overnight rating and a 27 share, the best Belmont overnight since a 15.4/47 for Seattle Slew's Triple Crown-clinching victory in 1977, according to Nielsen Media Research.
A record crowd of more than 120,000 went from a roar to silence today at Belmont Park as Birdstone upset Smarty Jones in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) and denied racing its 12th Triple Crown winner.
Pat Day sent Fire Slam through a narrow opening on the rail and Fire Slam edged out Teton Forest by a head to win the Riva Ridge Breeders' Cup (gr. II) today at Belmont Park.
John Velazquez was on some speedballs Saturday at Belmont. A race after he guided Bear Fan to a track record going 6 1/2 furlongs, he took Speightstown on a tour-de-force at six furlongs.
Smarty Jones will have to do a lot to win as impressively as Bear Fan. The 5-year-old mare set a track record in taking the Vagrancy (gr. II) by nine lengths in the first of six consecutive graded stakes today at Belmont Park that will culminate with a run for the Triple Crown.
The early money wagered on the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) has made Smarty Jones an overwhelming 1-5 choice over his eight rivals as he attempts to become racing's first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978.
Jason Orman, trainer of Preakness (gr. I) runner-up Rock Hard Ten, is taking aim once again at Smarty Jones in Saturday's Belmont Stakes (gr. I), saying "If we were running for second, we wouldn't be here."
Eddington, the third-place finisher in the Preakness (gr. I) and 10-1 on the morning line for Saturday's 136th running of the $1 million Belmont Stakes (gr. I) for 3-year-olds, galloped a mile and three furlongs over Belmont's main track Friday. "He's ready," trainer Mark Hennig said. "He's doing as well as can be expected."
Forecasters upgraded the chance of showers to 60% at Belmont Park Saturday as Smarty Jones goes for the Triple Crown in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
At the daily press conference outside Barn 5 at Belmont Park Friday morning, trainer John Servis' opening remarks were "I feel real good." He acknowledged that Smarty Jones was ready for his bid for the Triple Crown on Saturday and said the undefeated runner "knows it's time to dance."
As Smarty Jones got his bath after gate-schooling and galloping around the Belmont Park oval Friday afternoon, Barn 5 got a little devine intervention: a surprise visit from the Little Sisters of the Poor.
Trainer John Servis is not worried about Smarty Jones getting the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) distance of 1 1/2 miles. But just a few months ago he was worried about the colt going 1 1/4 miles.
Weather forecasters are predicting a very good day for Belmont Park on Saturday as Smarty Jones tackles the Triple Crown, although there could be scattered showers to go with a high of 58 degrees.
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