November 30, 2021

Get to know the 2021 Belmont Stakes contenders

The Belmont Stakes trophy (c) Harold Roth/Horsephotos.com

***Updated with post positions and morning-line odds

After skipping the Kentucky Derby (G1), Rombauer exploded from off the pace to win the Preakness S. (G1) going away at odds of 11.80-1. Now he’ll bid for divisional leadership in the June 5 Belmont S. (G1), where several Derby alumni and a new shooter pose fresh challenges.

Medina Spirit, the first-past-the-post in the Derby and third in the Preakness, is not going for the Belmont. The Triple Crown veteran who seriously considered competing in all three jewels, Keepmeinmind, was definitely ruled out of the Belmont on Monday.

Here’s the final Belmont field:

Preakness runners

ROMBAUER, post 3, 3-1

Preakness upsetter, whose prior stakes win came in the El Camino Real Derby, was improving from a third in a paceless Blue Grass (G2).

Owners: John & Diane Fradkin; Trainer: Michael McCarthy; Jockey: John Velazquez

Pedigree: Twirling Candy-Cashmere, by Cowboy Cal

More on Rombauer

FRANCE GO DE INA, post 5, 30-1

Japanese shipper showed tactical speed before tiring to seventh in the Preakness.

Owner: Yuji Inaida; Trainer: Hideyuki Mori; Jockey: Ricardo Santana

Pedigree: Will Take Charge-Dreamy Blues, by Curlin

More on France Go de Ina

Contenders freshened since the Kentucky Derby

HOT ROD CHARLIE, post 4, 7-2

Kentucky Derby third had wired the Louisiana Derby (G2) in track-record time two back.

Owners: Roadrunner Racing, Boat Racing & Strauss Bros Racing; Trainer: Doug O’Neill; Jockey: Flavien Prat

Pedigree: Oxbow-Indian Miss, by Indian Charlie

More on Hot Rod Charlie

ESSENTIAL QUALITY, post 2, 2-1

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) and Blue Grass champion lost his perfect record when a wide-trip fourth as the Derby favorite.

Owner: Godolphin; Trainer: Brad Cox; Jockey: Luis Saez

Pedigree: Tapit-Delightful Quality, by Elusive Quality

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KNOWN AGENDA, post 6, 6-1

Florida Derby (G1) romper closed for ninth in the Kentucky Derby after getting shuffled back from his rail post.

Owner: St. Elias Stable; Trainer: Todd Pletcher; Jockey: Irad Ortiz

Pedigree: Curlin-Byrama, by Byron

More on Known Agenda

BOURBONIC, post 1, 15-1

Wood Memorial (G2) shocker never landed a blow when 13th in the Derby.

Owner: Calumet Farm; Trainer: Todd Pletcher; Jockey: Kendrick Carmouche

Pedigree: Bernardini-Dancing Afleet, by Afleet Alex

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ROCK YOUR WORLD, post 7, 9-2

Santa Anita Derby (G1) conqueror never recovered from a troubled break in the Derby and trudged home 17th in his first career loss.

Owners: Hronis Racing & Talla Racing; Trainer: John Sadler; Jockey: Joel Rosario

Pedigree: Candy Ride-Charm the Maker, by Empire Maker

More on Rock Your World

Triple Crown newcomer

OVERTOOK, post 8, 20-1

Withers runner-up was most recently third to stablemate Promise Keeper in the Peter Pan.

Owners: Repole Stable, St. Elias Stable, Michael Tabor, Mrs. John Magnier & Derrick Smith; Trainer: Todd Pletcher; Jockey: Manny Franco

Pedigree: Curlin-Got Lucky, by A.P. Indy

More on Overtook