Belmont Stakes Betting
Belmont Stakes Bets
Betting on the Belmont Stakes has remained a mainstay in American sports for over a century. With the yearly renewal of the third leg of the Triple Crown just around the corner, it’s a great time to prepare your betting strategy for the big race. In 2016, there was $99,419,023 in wagers from all sources on the race with $52,188,416 bet on the Belmont Stakes itself.
It’s time for you to be part of the action.
Straight bets remain the most popular way to gain traction for most horse players and this year's Belmont Stakes will be no exception. This type of wager is on a single horse and a single outcome. Part of the fun with a race as big as the Belmont Stakes is that there is a wide range of exotic bets as well. These are explained below in brief.
Win – Horse must finish 1st
Place – Horse must finish 1st or 2nd
Show – Horse must finish 1st, 2nd or 3rd
By most accounts, straight bets are much easier to win than exotic bets. Players have been known to place big money on their preferences to win, with hedge bets to show and place shoring up any potential losses. A win bet is by far the most popular wager in all of horse racing. Calculate approximate payoffs
Exotic bets are wagers on two or more outcomes tied together. This exponentially increases the payout of the bet, but it also makes them more difficult to win. The most common types of exotic bets are the exatca and trifecta.
Exacta – Horses must finish 1st and 2nd in exact order
Trifecta – Horses must finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd in exact order
Superfecta – Horses must finish 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th in exact order
Box Bet – By “boxing” any of the above bets you change the order from “exact” to “any”. This makes the bet simpler and therefore a bit easier to win, reducing the payout somewhat. An example is a “trifecta box” where you would select the top-three horses in no specific order. This is one of the most popular ways horse players wager with exotic bets because it reduces risk, but also promises big time payouts.
Wheel Bet – A wheel bet is a simple way of laying down multiple exotic bets which all include at least one constant variable. An example would be an “Exatca Wheel on #2 and All”. In this case, you are laying down an exacta bet with Horse No. 2 as the winning horse, and all other horses coming in second place.
Partial Wheel Bet – This is similar to a wheel bet, except that you can exclude certain horses from the wheel if you would like. By saying, “#2 Exacta Wheel on 2,3 and 4,5,6” you are creating exacta bets with 2 and 4, 2 and 5, 2 and 6 as well as another set with 3 and 4, 3 and 5, 3 and 6 all finishing in the top-two.
How the Triple Crown affects betting
The Belmont Stakes serves as the final leg of the Triple Crown, a three-race set of American Classics that also features the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. It is hosted by Belmont Park in upstate New York and runs in early June. The Belmont Stakes is the oldest of the three American Classics having run since 1867.
The Belmont Stakes is often unpredictable with that 1 ½ mile distance. This is a far stretch from the 1 ¼ mile contenders will run at the Kentucky Derby, and much further than the 1 3/16th miles they have to complete in the Preakness Stakes. The extended distance is one that many of the runners in the Belmont Stakes will only attempt once in their lifetime. It’s why the final leg of the Triple Crown is aptly named the “Test of the Champion”.
This makes Belmont Stakes betting a bit of a gambler’s paradise. The 2013 renewal of the race was won by Palace Malice, a 15/1 longshot who edged 3/1 favorite Orb. California Chrome was upset as a 3/5 favorite when Tonalist won as an 8/1 outside shot. The payout on American Phaorah was tight as he claimed victory with 3/5 odds of his own, but those that took a flier on Creator with a mark of 10/1 were handsomely rewarded.
While the Belmont Stakes is one of the biggest races on the North American calander, interest in the event is usually based on the potential of a Triple Crown contender. This is notable in the wagering action generated from Belmont Stakes betting.
In 2014, when California Chrome was bidding for the first Triple Crown in over five years, the Belmont Stakes drew a record handle of $90.3 million. This was 32.7 percent higher than the $68 million bet on Smarty Jones in the 2004 Belmont Stakes.
The following year, American Pharoah once again drew major interest from the betting world. The 2015 Belmont Stakes saw another strong day of action with $82.4 million generated from all sources.
Belmont Stakes betting dipped dramatically last year when Creator won in 2016 for two main reasons. Firstly, there was no Triple Crown up for grabs. Second, the rivalry between Nyquist and Exaggerator had served as the main storyline of the season and with the former injured, there simply wasn’t as much excitement. The 2016 Belmont Stakes handle fell to a still-respectable $52.2 million.
However, what many fans who failed to tune in missed was a dramatic finish where a charging Creator edged the front running Destin by a nose.
Each phase of the Triple Crown presents a unique opportunity. The Kentucky Derby is about betting on potential and the hope that a champion will rise from an illustrious field of three-year-olds. The Preakness Stakes is about keeping momentum, and maintaining hope that a Triple Crown can bet attained in any given year. The Belmont Stakes is a true gamble, and one that all sorts of horse players should relish and enjoy.
Anything can happen in Belmont Stakes betting. That’s the beauty of it all. You can witness history being made, or legends being denied of an opportunity that comes once in a lifetime. It is the essence of everything we love about sport…and gambling on it along the way.
Read further on ideas of how to bet the Triple Crown.