TVG
The Free PPs
Horse Player Baseball Cap in Black or Navy

Horseplayer Baseball Cap

Navy or Black

$23.48 (includes shipping)

SHOP NOW

Rich Strike

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Rich Strike

Best Beyer: 101

After lighting up the tote board in the Derby it would be easy to read between the lines and point out all the angles that a handicapper could use to see him winning. But as the saying goes "hindsight is 20/20" - and it's too late to bet after they spring the gates open. But just for fun, let's take a look back at the one running line in his past performances that stands out and drives home the most important handicapping angle of all -- home field advantage. It doesn't matter which sport you're betting, home-field advantage is the single most valuable angle you can use to pick winners. It's so valuable that sportsbooks and your favorite bookmaker calculate a three-point swing into the betting lines for the home team when the lines come out. Before what will forever be the greatest victory of his career, Rich Strike had just a single victory in a 1 mile maiden claiming race for $30,000. It was his second lifetime start and he beat a field of 10 other horses by 17 lengths while gearing down. He did it under the Twin Spires. And when he crossed the line first in the Derby at odds of 80-1 he rewarded bettors who value the theory of home-field advantage with the second largest payout on a $2 wager in Derby history behind Donerail who did it in 1913 at odds of 91-1.

$300 RISK FREE BET

Creative Minister

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Creative Minister

Best Beyer: 100

Broke his maiden going two turns at Keeneland in his second start and returned to win an OC Allowance on the Derby undercard before his 3rd place finish LTO in the Preakness. Considering he wasn’t given a chance to compete in any of the Derby preps he showed a willingness in the Preakness despite being pinched back a few strides from the gate. His sire Creative Cause was 5th in the 2012 Derby and 3rd in the Preakness but didn’t run in the Belmont that year and never won a race longer than 1 1/16th — which was the distance of this Belmont contenders two wins. Expect him to be close to the pace at the longer distance here.

$300 RISK FREE BET

Mo Donegal

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Mo Donegal

Best Beyer: 96

Before the running of the 2022 Derby, horses drawing the rail spot in the Run for the Roses have traditionally been given little chance to overcome all the problems that arise when breaking from post position one against 19 other horses battling for position before the first turn at Churchill Downs. But when Churchill Downs increased the distance between the most inside post and the rail for leg one of the Triple Crown, Pletcher was seemingly optimistic that this son of Uncle Mo would fair better from the start. But there isn't anything that anyone can do about the amount of time that the first horse entered into the starting gate has to stand at attention while the remaining 19 are patiently loaded into the gate. So as Pletcher puts it “He hopped at the start. I didn’t anticipate that we would be a part of the pace, but I also didn’t want to be 19th going around the first turn either. He stood in the gate a long time and he’s a well-behaved horse. He got a little quiet and just didn’t jump and it compromised his position,” Pletcher said. “I thought he put in a good run. He had to angle out around horses and have Barber Road laying on him the whole way down the lane. He ran a race that was good enough to win if things would have maybe gone his way along the way, but he kept trying until the end. He was still closing ground that last sixteenth of a mile.” He'll be the likely favorite and his chances here are greatly improved by the victory of Early Voting in the Preakness.

$300 RISK FREE BET

We the People

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

We the People

Best Beyer: 103

WinStar Farm homebred was undefeated in two starts at Oaklawn before a dismal 7th place performance as the second choice to Secret Oath in the Arkansas Derby won by Cyberknife. Returned to crush the Peter Pan going gate to wire here last time out over a sealed track that was rated "good" and giving handicappers a "home-field advantage" angle to consider when handicapping the Belmont field. But he'll have to contend with probable Belmont favorite Mo Donegal for the win.

$300 RISK FREE BET

Golden Glider

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Golden Glider

Best Beyer: 87

Pressed the pace in second for most of the Blue Grass before fading to 4th when the real running began. Struggled in 5th through the early going of the Peter Pan but was able to get his footing and finished the best of the rest in second over the off-track. Winner of his first two starts for Casse and is on the improve but his lack of experience and speed at this level will prove too much in here.

$300 RISK FREE BET

Horse Tourney Player Baseball Cap in Black or Navy

Horse Tourney Player Baseball Cap

Navy or Black

$23.98 (includes shipping)

SHOP NOW

Barber Road

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Barber Road

Best Beyer: 94

He was 7 of 8 on the board before his 6th place finish in the Derby. His two career wins came from front running efforts. But can't see him being part of the pace in the Belmont given the presence of We the People and Kuchar. Consistent, hard-trying son of pace pressing Race Day who was a G2 winner going 1 1/8 miles twice in his short career. He was further back than Rich Strike in the Derby and widest of all down the stretch. The Belmont favors horses close to or on the pace, so his late strategy of making one-run doesn't bode well for him in here.

$300 RISK FREE BET

When I Die Bury Me In The Infield T-Shirt

"When I Die Bury Me In The Infield"

Choice of Colors

$26.48 (includes shipping)

SHOP NOW

Nest

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Nest

Best Beyer: 92

Won the Grade 1 Ashland before entering the starting gate in the Kentucky Oaks on May 6 as the lukewarm favorite but came up short to the Lukas trained sensational three-year-old Secret Oath who was competitive against the boys in the Arkansas Derby (3rd) and Preakness (4th) as warm ups for her eventual win in the Oaks. Pletcher hasn't made a final decision to enter Nest in the Belmont but feels confident she has the pedigree to get the Belmont distance as her grandsire A.P. Indy won the '92 Belmont and subsequently produced Rags to Riches who won the 2007 Belmont over this filly's sire Curlin. Interesting mix of potential handicapping angles to consider her chances here but hard to see her taking this running of the Belmont.

$300 RISK FREE BET

Horse Racing Future Fan Baseball Cap in Black or Navy

Horse Racing Future Fan Baseball Cap

Navy or Black

$24.98 (includes shipping)

SHOP NOW

Skippylongstocking

Photo-by-Jeff-Griffith

Skippylongstocking

Best Beyer: 94

Third in the Wood behind Mo Donegal and Early Voting and he nosed out Simplification for 5th in the Preakness. His sire Exaggerator was the heavy favorite to win the 2016 Belmont but failed to find the fast track to his liking after winning the Santa Anita Derby and Preakness over sloppy tracks. If it storms at Belmont it’s possible he could make his connections proud but given his lack of success at this level, and going against the Derby and Wood winners, it’s hard to see him moving up a half dozen lengths from his Preakness performance.

$300 RISK FREE BET