The 1 1/8-mile Empire Classic was the feature race on a Belmont card that included eight stakes worth a total of $1.75 million.
Former claimer Royal Posse will try for his second straight stakes win against other New York-breds and third victory overall when he faces an expected eight rivals in the $300,000 Empire Classic Handicap.
Royal Posse dug in deep and turned back a game rival in pacesetter Saratoga Snacks to win his stakes debut, the $100,000 Evan Shipman Stakes for New York-breds at Saratoga Race Course.
Not seen at the races in 10 months, grade II winner Zivo is set to return Sept. 4 at Saratoga Race Course in the $100,000 Evan Shipman Stakes for New York-breds.
Though Uncle Sigh didn't win at Saratoga Aug. 16, trainer Gary Contessa was satisfied with the effort put forth by the 4-year-old colt who last raced in the 2014 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum Brands (gr. I).
Twice grade III-placed Uncle Sigh breezed four furlongs in :49.54 on the Oklahoma training track Tuesday, July 21, at Saratoga Race Course as the son of Indian Charlie prepares for his first start in more than a year.
Two-time grade I winner Dads Caps appears to be the class in the $250,000 True North Stakes (gr. II) June 5 at Belmont Park, as a part of the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival.
West Point Thoroughbreds' Empire Dreams scored the biggest win of his career when he took the $200,000 Commentator Handicap at Belmont Park May 25.
After cruising to victory in an allowance/optional claiming race May 2 at Belmont Park, stakes winner Ostrolenka appears ready to deliver a top effort in the $125,000 Mike Lee Stakes for New York-bred 3-year-olds May 25.
Favorite Captain Serious held off several late challengers to win the $100,000 Hollie Hughes Stakes for New York-breds Jan. 18 at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Carrying top weight of 133 pounds, favored Salutos Amigos rallied from off the pace to take the Fall Highweight Handicap by 1 3/4 lengths over longshot Mewannarose on the Thanksgiving Day card at Aqueduct Race Track.
Named after Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, Captain Serious looks to stuff his competition in the $300,000 Fall Highweight Handicap (gr. III) Nov. 27 at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Four times a runner-up in stakes races this season, including a second-place finish to Palace in the Forego (gr. I), Big Business will try to secure the first stakes win of his career in the Hudson Handicap Oct. 18.
Defending champion Saratoga Snacks takes on eight fellow New York-breds Oct. 18 in the $300,000 Empire Classic Handicap, the main feature on Empire Showcase Day at Belmont Park.
Highlighted by six stakes worth $1.15 million, nearly 100 New York-breds will compete on a special 11-race card for the inaugural "Saratoga Showcase Day" Aug. 24 at Saratoga.
Fox Hill Farms' Coup de Grace closed with gusto in the $200,000 Amsterdam Stakes at Saratoga Race Course July 26, taking advantage after a quick early pace set-up in the 6 1/2-furlong sprint for his late-running style.
The $200,000 Amsterdam Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Saratoga Race Course July 26 looks to have several intriguing contenders, some stretching out in distance and others dropping back.
West Point Thoroughbreds' Empire Dreams benefited from an outside post and clear trip July 12 to take the $161,000 New York Derby at Finger Lakes, while an incident at the start impacted more than half the field.
West Point Thoroughbreds' aptly named Empire Dreams looks to break through July 12 in the $150,000 New York Derby at Finger Lakes, coming off back-to-back seconds for trainer Tom Albertrani in restricted company.
Recent classic starter Kid Cruz reeled in entrymate and pacesetter Captain Serious in deep stretch to win the $196,000 Dwyer Stakes (gr. III) in the final strides July 5 at Belmont Park.
Kid Cruz, overpowered in the Preakness (gr. I) this spring but a sparkling winner last time out in the Easy Goer, returns to Belmont Park in the $200,000 Dwyer Stakes (gr. III) July 5.
Ring Weekend, coming off a fifth in the Preakness, and Uncle Sigh, 14th in the Kentucky Derby, head a field of seven sophomores slated for the Pegasus Stakes June 15 at Monmouth Park that also marks the return of Albano.
The 7-5 odds on Captain Serious in the $125,000 Mike Lee Stakes turned out to be a gift on New York Showcase Day at Belmont Park May 31, when the undefeated son of Successful Appeal trounced his rivals while geared down.
After coming up short in the first jewel of the Triple Crown, Uncle Sigh will try his luck against nine other New York-bred 3-year-olds when he starts in the first leg of the Big Apple Triple Saturday at Belmont Park.
Owner Chip McEwen will have several veterans with him May 3 at the Kentucky Derby, but Churchill Downs didn't help with their tickets or access.
|Horse||Trainer||Breeder / Owner|
|Captain Serious||Michael E. Hushion||
|Double Gold||Luis A. Miranda||
|Empire Dreams||Thomas Albertrani||
|Freddie G||Michael E. Hushion||
|John's Island||James A. Jerkens||
|Loki's Vengeance||Michael E. Hushion||
|Uncle Sigh||William I. Mott||
Upcoming Stakes Entries
|Carlos Salazar S.||ALB|
|Tah Dah S.||BTP|
|Minnesota H. B. P. A. Distaff S.||CBY|
|Brooks Fields S.||CBY|
|Mystic Lake Derby||CBY|