Only one order has yet to be revealed for the 2014 Belmont Stakes field.
That, of course, is the finishing order. On Wednesday, how horses will be ordered in their post positions and how likely they are to win the Belmont were revealed.
Here are those post positions and odds, as well as predictions for the finishing order.
|Belmont Stakes Field|
|5||Ride On Curlin||12-1|
|10||General a Rod||20-1|
There's a reason why Matuszak has the worst odds to win the Belmont. It lost to Kid Cruz, the same horse that lost the Preakness Stakes by 15 3/4 lengths, in April.
Matterhorn couldn't even finish top three in May's Peter Pan Stakes at Belmont Park. If he couldn't finish top three then, he won't come close now.
9. General a Rod
General a Rod is one of only three horses that have competed in each Triple Crown event this season. However, he's the worst of the three, having lost by eight lengths in the Preakness and 8 1/4 in the Kentucky Derby.
Commissioner finished second to Tonalist in the Peter Pan Stakes. While that sounds impressive given how high Tonalist's odds are, Commissioner lost the race by four lengths.
Samraat sat out the Preakness so he'll be well-rested for the Belmont. He also has a favorable post position. That's about all he has going for him.
He only finished fifth in the Kentucky Derby, losing by 5 3/4 lengths.
Oddsmakers love Tonalist as a sleeper pick. Having won the Peter Pan, he has experience winning at Belmont Park. He failed to draw a favorable post position, though.
5. Wicked Strong
Wicked Strong didn't even have top-three odds prior to Wednesday's events. The opening line, though, has him sitting as the greatest threat to California Chrome.
This is surprising. In the Kentucky Derby, Wicked Strong finished just fourth, 5 3/4 lengths behind California Chrome and four behind Commanding Curve.
4. Medal Count
Medal Count couldn't find success in the Derby either. However, drawing post position No. 1 should give it a chance on Saturday.
No slot has had more Belmont champions start in it than the furthest inside. Twenty-three horses in total that drew No. 1 have won, eight more than any other post.
3. Ride On Curlin
Ride On Curlin drew a more favorable post position on Wednesday than other horses with (supposedly) higher odds. Since 1905, 14 horses that have raced from post position No. 5 have won the Belmont. Only four have won in Wicked Strong's No. 9 and two in Tonalist's No. 11.
Ride On Curlin also has the whole 1 1/2 length finish behind California Chrome in the Preakness going for him.
2. Commanding Curve
Commanding Curve is underrated. He's been dealt just the fifth-highest odds despite finishing second in the Kentucky Derby. Fatigue is also a non-factor after he sat out the Preakness.
Commanding Curve finished five lengths ahead of Ride On Curlin in the Kentucky Derby. Don't tell that to oddsmakers, though.
1. California Chrome
It would be reasonable for California Chrome bettors to be nervous over the fact that no horse has won the Triple Crown since 1978. Sure, he won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, but so have five other horses since 2002.
However, California Chrome is different. He was the favorite to win the Belmont before he even won the Preakness. The field may be deep, but it isn't top-heavy enough to knock him off.
If California Chrome loses on Saturday, it'd be shocking.
David Daniels is a columnist at Bleacher Report and editor at Wade-O Radio.
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