The Triple Crown is a memory now, as three different horses won the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.
It was not the best Triple Crown season. This was pretty obvious. There was never a true contender for any of the races. Going into the Kentucky Derby, there wasn’t a horse you look at as a Triple Crown contender.
It was not my best day at Belmont Park yesterday. I’ve had much better, but that’s the volatility of horse racing after having a nice week. We’ll play Belmont Park again this afternoon.
Belmont has nine races, four on the turf and five on the dirt, worth $636,000 in prize money. Head below for our best Belmont Park picks on June 12, 2022.
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Race 2 covers 7 furlongs for a $72,000 purse this afternoon. I’d put Waters of Merom and Let’s Be Clear at the top of the shortlist in the second at Belmont.
Waters of Merom is 3 for 9 and a likely contender for her fourth win. She’s 5th, 4th, 1st in her previous three assignments.
Three races ago, Waters of Merom beat Diamond Collector by a head in an $82,000 event. That was impressive, but what happened to that form? In her latest stop on May 22, she finished 5th for $66,000.
She is fully capable, but needs more than that race. If she can revert to April 7, Waters of Merom will be on the premises for a win.
Let’s Be Clear is 2 for 7 and finished 4th, 10th, 1st in her previous three races. She was a winner on March 5 at Turfway Park in a $64,000 assignment. Impressive win by 3 ½ lengths.
Brad Cox pointed her to Churchill Downs on May 19 for a $134,000 trip. That was too tough, with Let’s Be Clear finishing 4th. Not bad given test, though.
A grade drop to $72,000 should give Let’s Be Clear the best chance of returning to the winner’s circle.
Race 3 – Jersey Girl Stakes
Post Time: 2:03 p.m. EST
The $150,000 Jersey Girl Stakes is a 6-furlong event on the dirt. Look for Hot Peppers and Gimmick to do well with a chance at a winning performance.
Hot Peppers is 3 for 5 and 7th, 1st, 1st, 1st, 2nd in five career starts. She finished 7th in the $110,000 Stonehenge Farm South Sophomore Fillies Stakes on March 27.
That ended three straight wins, most recently a win by a head on February 20 for a $61,000 purse. She’s probably better down in class, but could find her form today.
Gimmick looks like a good value play from the inside. No. 1 is 2 for 7 and 3rd, 1st in her previous two attempts. She most recently showed 3rd on May 20 in the $150,000 Miss Preakness Stakes (Gr. 3).
This was after a $106,000 win by 4 ½ lengths on April 7. She drew clear at the ½ pole and pulled ahead for an easy win. Look for Gimmick to prevail.
Race 6 is a $28,000 claiming race featuring eight runners. A longlongtimeago and Vikram should put on the best show in this one.
A longlongtimeago has a win in six attempts in his career, finishing 7th, 6th, 3rd in his previous three assignments. Three races back, A longlongtimeago showed 3rd in a $72,000 event, though since then regressed.
In his latest start, he finished 7th for an $80,000 prize on May 12. He had finished 6th on April 1 in a $72,000 assignment. Dropping down to $28,000 should nicely.
Vikram has finished 3rd, 6th, 1st in three career starts. As a rookie, Vikram beat Mission Key by 2 ½ lengths for a $38,000 purse. That was a nice effort.
After finishing 6th on July 12, 2021 in a $27,000 event, Vikram responded in 3rd on August 13, 2021 at $35,000 and then a layoff until now.
The $225,000 gelding should respond well after a break. He has an impressive pedigree from Blame and Speightstown, but never lived up to expectations. This isn’t the toughest race to return to following a layoff, though.