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Once the Preakness Stakes winds down, there are still options for bettors. Three weeks later, on Saturday, June 6, 2020, the Belmont Stakes takes place in Elmont, New York. If a horse succeeds in both the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness, Belmont Stakes betting can provide even more excitement with the possibility of a Triple Crown winner.

This year marks the 152nd year that the Belmont Stakes race will be run and there are numerous bets to be made on the final leg of the Triple Crown competition. This page gives you the goods so you can make smart picks and (hopefully) make some coin.

How to Bet on the Belmont Stakes

Belmont Stakes racing is easy to bet on. All you need is knowledge of the different bets you can make on one of horse racing’s top competitions. Below, we’ll explore the type of bets you can make and how to read odds.

Futures Bets

If you can correctly predict who will win the Belmont Stakes early, you could see yourself on the winning end of a great bet. Futures are bets you can make well in advance of a big event. Odds at your favorite racebook would look something like this:

Odds to win the Belmont Stakes

Mister Ed -200

Seattle Slew +250

Man O War +575

Sir Barton +723

Cisco +800

Khartoum +1000

Pegasus +1350

We use American odds but you can pick Fractional (1/5) or Decimal (1.20) odds if you prefer. Your location generally determines the odds type. Bettors in Europe and Australia tend to like decimals, whereas those in the U.K. use fractions. In North America, you’ll usually find American odds.

Favorites are always shown with the minus sign (-) and underdogs have plus signs (+) beside their odds. This is universal across all betting sites.

At -200, oddsmakers are giving Mister Ed a 66.67 percent shot at winning. If you were to lay down $100 on Wilbur’s talking horse, you’d get a payout of $150 – your $100 is returned along with your winnings of $50.

On the other hand, a long-shot bet on the winged creature of myth at +1350 (6.90% chance) would give you $1,450 – your original money comes back coupled with your winnings of $1,350. Because this is considered a risky bet, the reward is greater.

To see how much you’d win based on the odds offered and the amount wagered, check out our Odds Calculator. You’ll also see the percentage chances that oddsmakers are giving each horse of winning.

Win, Place, Show

Akin to the moneyline in other sports, this is a set of three bets rolled into one where you would pick a horse to win, another to come in second (place), and the last to come in third (show). Win, place, show bets require accuracy since you will need to correctly predict the positions of three horses.

Exacta, Trifecta and Quinella Betting

To make an exacta bet, you’ll need to guess the top two finishers in the Stakes in the right order. To place a trifecta bet, you’ll need to determine the first-, second- and third-place horses. A quinella bet is a little simpler since you have to forecast two horses to finish first and second but they don’t have to be in the correct order.

Horse Matchup

To narrow down the field, horse matchup betting allows you to choose two horses. They don’t need to win outright, but they do need to come in the order of your choosing. For instance, if you bet that Silver will finish before Bullseye and that happens, you win your bet. Neither horse needs to come in first, they just have to beat the other.

Handicapping Your Belmont Stakes Bets

The Belmont Stakes is known as “The Test of the Champion” because the longer track distance of 1.5 miles historically puts faster horses at a disadvantage. Endurance is a key factor for races like these and slow starters shouldn’t be dismissed. A horse’s pace makes all the difference in this Triple Crown race since slowpokes could gain momentum and gallop their way to the finish line.

• Pressers/Stalkers: These are horses that come from behind. They may look slow at first but move swiftly to pass their opponents.

• Front-runners: These stallions start strong and keep a steady pace throughout the race. This is not to say that they can’t outrun their rivals if necessary, they’re just better at managing their strides to stay in the race.

• Closers: Coffee is for closers. It’s also the name for horses that start slow and gain momentum as the race comes to a head.

Besides pace, knowing a horse’s position on the track can also help you make smart bets. Steeds that start the race closer to the inside of the track have a shorter distance to run. In a 1.5-mile race like the Belmont Stakes, starting near the inside could give a presser the edge.

Belmont Stakes Odds and Ends

  • The Belmont Stakes is the oldest of the Triple Crown horse races with the first race taking place in 1867.
  • Belmont Park is in Elmont, New York, about an hour’s drive from Manhattan. Unless there’s traffic. (There’s always traffic.)
  • The winner of the race is draped with a blanket of white carnations. The pure white carnations symbolize love and luck. The blanket takes about 700 Colombian carnations and weighs approximately 40 pounds.
  • Secretariat holds the best Belmont Stakes time at 2:24. His 1973 run time also set the world record for a 1.5-mile dirt track race and he won by 31 lengths, the largest margin of victory of any Grade 1 Stakes race in the United States. A statue of Secretariat likewise receives a carnation blanket.
  • Prior to the 1921 race, horses ran clockwise like they would in an English race. Since then, most races run on U.S. soil are run counterclockwise.
  • Trainer James G. Rowe Sr. has the most Belmont Stakes wins with eight.
  • Sarava is the biggest underdog to have won the Stakes. In 2002, at +7000 (70/1) odds, this horse ended the front-runner’s bid for the Triple Crown.
  • The 1867 purse – what the winner receives – was $2,500, equivalent to about $43,166.89 today. The current prize is $1.5 million.
  • The favorite won this horse racing event 11 consecutive times from 1878 to 1888.
  • The racetrack is named after investor and politician August Belmont I.
  • The Tiffany and Co. designed trophy features three horses supporting a silver bowl with a single horse standing on top. The three bottom horses represent Eclipse, Herod and Matchem, foundational sire thoroughbreds. The top horse represents Fenian, the winner of the third Belmont Stakes. Winners are given the option of keeping the trophy for a year or leaving it to be displayed on the grounds.
  • The race with the biggest crowd took place in 2004 with 120,130 people attending.
  • Before 2016, bay horses were the most victorious with 56 wins. Chestnuts had 54 wins and dark/bay browns had 33.
  • 2018 saw Justify become the 13th Triple Crown winner.
  • Julie Krone is the first and only female jockey to win a Triple Crown. In 1993 she captured the prestigious honor with Colonial Affair, who was a +1300 (13/1) long shot.