2017 Belmont Stakes Longshots
With Epicharis out, this year’s race is cut down to just 11 runners but is still wide open with no stand-out runners and none of the classic winners taking their place.
The U.S. thoroughbreds very rarely tackle races of 12 furlongs, and even less so on turf, with this distance considered a marathon. The race does often throw up surprise winners, unfancied horses but they are horses that do possess stamina over pure speed.
Two horses that look assured to appreciate the step up in distance, and at big prices are Patch and Twisted Tom. Patch is put in as a 12/1 shot on the U.S. morning line, but was available at 40/1 with the U.K. bookies this morning, and is still available at 18/1 with Winner Sports. He is the most inexperienced in the race, with this being only his fifth career start but is open to improvement. On only his third start he finished second to Girvin in the Louisiana Derby, before finishing 14th in the Kentucky Derby. He started from widest of all in the Kentucky Derby, travelling wide and also meeting interference so you can forgive him that run. He’s drawn widest of all again in 12, but faces just 10 other opponents this time and he should be able to get a good position without using up too much energy.
Twisted Tom has a mountain to climb on the figures but his trainer, Chad Brown wouldn’t have him in here unless he thought he had a chance. He is rated a 20/1 chance on the morning line, but is available at 25/1 with the U.K. bookies and there also a good chance he could be an even bigger price on the exchanges as one of the outsiders. He comes in to this race on the back of three wins in much lesser company since being blinkered. He likes to front-run and has drawn the perfect stall in number one, from where he will attempt to make all.
In a race with no high profile runners you could back both Twisted Tom and Patch eachway against a field that has many suspect stayers.
Recommended Bets, Belmont Stakes (23:27 GMT)
Patch 18/1 eachway, Winner Sports
Twisted Tom 25/1 eachway, Paddy Power and Betfair