Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:53 AM

Horse Races Today: Thursday's Belmont Park and Churchill Downs Analysis & Odds

We will have a field of 10 that will line up in Saturday’s Belmont Stakes (G1), two weeks later than originally scheduled and now the first race of the Triple Crown instead of the last.
 
The race also has been shortened from 1 1/2 miles to 1 1/8 miles, which means the race will now be contested around one turn.
 
I am already hearing some “experts” proclaiming the cut back in distance will help the horses with early speed and hinder horses that come from off the pace. That is not true at all, as horses coming from off the pace are at no disadvantage at the distance over the Belmont Park main track.
 
Tiz the Law was installed as the 6-5 morning line favorite. The Barclay Tagg trainee drew the eight post and will be making his first start since winning the Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park on March 28 at 1 1/8 miles around two turns.
 
The colt has won four of his five starts and is proven over the surface. He won the Champagne (G1) at one mile over the Belmont Park main track last October.
 
His main rivals include Sole Volante (9-2), who beat allowance company on June 10 and will coming back in just 10 days. He won the Sam F. Davis (G3) and then was second in the Tampa Bay Derby (G2) in his two previous outings.
 
Dr Post (5-1) figures to take some action. The Todd Pletcher trainee has just three starts under this belt. He was an impressive maiden winner in his second career start and then beat first level allowance foes on May 25 in his most recent start.
 
In addition to the Belmont Stakes we have a strong betting card on Saturday that will include the $250,000 Jaipur (G1), $300,000 Acorn (G1) and the $250,000 Woody Stephens.
 
I will have my full card for Belmont Stakes Day available here at VI by Friday night.
 
Here is the field, jockeys and morning odds for Saturday’s Belmont Stakes:

  1. Tap It To Win, John Velasquez, 6-1
  2. Sole Volante, Luca Panici, 9-2
  3. Max Player, Joel Rosario, 15-1
  4. Modernist, Junior Alvarado, 15-1
  5. Farmington Road, Javier Castellano, 15-1
  6. Fore Left, Jose Ortiz, 30-1
  7. Jungle Runner, Reylu Gutierrez, 50-1
  8. Tiz the Law, Manny Franco, 6-5
  9. Dr Post, Irad Ortiz Jr., 5-1
  10. Pneumatic, Ricardo Santana Jr. 8-1
     
    My Best Plays Report for Thursday includes my eight strongest plays from Churchill Downs and Belmont Park.
     
    You can catch the action from Belmont Park and Churchill Downs today from 1:00 to 6:30 on FS2. Horseplayers can also stream all the horse racing action using the Watch TVG App. The horse betting company based in the U.S. is offering a risk free bet up to $300 for new players. 
     
    To purchase my Belmont Park and Best Plays Reports for Thursday click here .
     
    Now is the perfect time to purchase my Monthly Package. It gives you a month of Belmont Park Reports daily and my Best Plays Report which will include all the major Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races.
     
    Here is the opening race from Belmont Park to get the day off to a good start:

    Belmont Park Race 1 Analysis - 6/18 (1:15)

    BEL Race 1 Md Sp Wt (1:15 ET)
    #1 Sneer   5-2
    #4 Thankful   4-1
    #6 So Darn Hot   2-1
    #3 Love On the Run   6-1
     
    Analysis: Sneer tracked the early pace and faded to finish a well beaten fifth last out in the slop at seven furlongs at Gulfstream Park last out as the beaten favorite. I'm going to put a line through that outing as she was a solid second two back at a mile over a fast main track at Gulfstream Park. She also was a game second in her debut over a wet track at Tampa Bay Downs in a race taken off the turf. She stretches back out to a route of ground and figures to bounce back over a fast surface. She is out of an Elusive Quality mare that has dropped five other runners with three winners. Johnny V takes the call for Clement who is having a solid meeting.
     
    Thankful was not away cleanly from a tough post and raced wide throughout on turf where she checked in in ninth, beaten seven lengths at 9-2 in a field of 12. She put in a good drill at the Spa since returning from Florida. She should take to the switch to the main track. She is by Triple Crown winner American Pharoah out of a Cat Thief mare that has dropped five winners including a pair of stakes winners, top earner Behold de Buy ($160,204). Pletcher is 26% winners moving runners from turf to dirt. He figures to show more with a race under this belt and a better post.
     
    Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Churchill Downs:

    Churchill Downs Race 6 Analysis - 6/18 (3:42)

    CD Race 6 Alw $81,000N1X (2:46 ET)
    #7 Acre   6-1
    #2 Angelus Warrior   6-1
    #8 Lontano   3-1
    #5 Letmeno    5-1
     
    Analysis: Acre tries turf for the first time here in his fifth career start. He was entered for the turf last summer in his second career start bit it was moved to the main track and he graduated in that outing. He makes his third start off the bench here after a fourth last out going seven furlongs on the main track at Churchill Downs. The winner of that race was Art Collector, who came back to beat non-winners of three optional claimers on June 13 here. He should take to turf, he is out of a stakes placed Galileo mar that has dropped three other winners and they have all won on turf including multiple stakes winner Lea ($2.3 million).
     
    Angelus Warrior makes his second start off a 5 1/2 month break here for the Maker barn. Last out the colt made a mild late rally to finish in the runner up spot going nine furlongs on turf here. He did not get much ace to run at and it looks as if he will here. He cuts back to a mile which should suit him his maiden breaker coming at a mile for a $50,000 tag last September.
     
    Today’s Featured Race of the Day from Belmont Park:

    Belmont Park Race 8 Analysis - 6/18 (5:04)

    BEL Race 8 Alw $56,000N1X (5:04 ET)
    #1 Morning Colors    9-2
    #12 Summer At the Spa   6-1
    #9 Astoria Kitten   5-2
    #5 Marquet Legacy   10-1
     
    Analysis: Morning Colors stalked the early pace and finished gamely to break her maiden in her debut by a neck at Tamp Bay Downs going a mile back on March 7. The effort was flattered when both the runner up and third place finisher came back to graduate in their next starts. She returns off a three month break here for the Clement barn that is off to a good start at the meet and is 15% winners with runners coming back off a 61-180 day layoff. She overcame a tough spot last out and now draws the rail today while picking up Rosario. She looks as if she still has plenty of upside.
     
    Summer At the Spa broke her maiden in her debut going six furlongs on turf last November at 25-1 while in the Toner barn. She returns here in the Thomas barn that is 22% winners with runners coming back off a +180-day layoff. She comes back with lasix added and the blinkers taken off. She has enough pedigree to handle mile. by Summer Front out of a Giant's Causeway mare, her first foal to race.

    Live Longshots - 6/18

    These are price plays for exotic players looking to find a couple of extra contenders to use in their trifecta and superfecta wagers. Or for those with smaller bankrolls, you might want to get in a small win-place wager.
     
    Belmont Park
    R2: #1 Luxury Suite   10-1
    R3: #7 Shesadirtydancer   8-1
    R4: #5 Street Trust   8-1
    R7: #2 Felix in Fabula   8-1
    R8: #5 Marquet Legacy   10-1
    R9: #1 English Soul   8-1
    R10: #9 Funny Pursuit   10-1
     
    Good luck today!

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