The 2016 Belmont Stakes field is set and Preakness winner Exaggerator will square off against twelve rivals in the Test of Champions.
Just like the Kentucky Derby set up perfectly for Nyquist, everything went right for Exaggerator in the Preakness. He got the wet track he loves and the fast early fractions took their toll on Nyquist, who lost second late to Cherry Wine.
Exaggerator was not nearly as far back in Baltimore and jockey Kent Desormeaux gave him a nice ground saving ride. He was always traveling smoothly and was much the best when the dust settled.
It is on to Belmont Park for the final leg of the Triple Crown and Exaggerator can take the lead in the race for 3-year-old championship honors with a victory at Big Sandy.
Belmont Stakes Field (in post position order, with comments)
#1 Governor Malibu (12-1) – Part of the Trifecta in all seven starts and was 2nd in the Peter Pan last time.
#2 Destin (6-1) – Two-time graded winner finished a respectable 6th in the Derby. He has stalking speed.
#3 Cherry Wine (8-1) – Late runner likes the slop and proved that statement true with a 2nd in the Preakness.
#4 Suddenbreakingnews (10-1) – G3 Southwest hero was a troubled 5th on the first Saturday in May.
#5 Stradivari (5-1) – Lightly raced and talented, he was a solid 4th in the Preakness and can move forward.
#6 Gettysburg (30-1) – Winstar entered the likely front runner to help their highly regarded late runner Creator.
#7 Seeking the Soul (30-1) – Recent maiden winner seems up against it but Stewart has surprised us before.
#8 Forever d’Oro (30-1) – Stewart’s second recent maiden winner graduated at Belmont.
#9 Trojan Nation (30-1) – Maiden was 2nd in the Wood Memorial and 16th in the Kentucky Derby.
#10 Lani (20-1) – Japanese warrior has competed in all three legs of the American Triple Crown.
#11 Exaggerator (9-5) – The fastest entrant was 1st in the SA Derby, 2nd in the Derby, and 1st in the Preakness.
#12 Brody’s Cause (20-1) – Keeneland specialist was an okay 7th in the Derby. Reminds me of Keen Ice.
#13 Creator (10-1) – Deep closer got up in the Arkansas Derby but was 13th in the Kentucky Derby.
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