There is a lot going on in this featured turf allowance race. The main attraction is Hardest Core (#1), the surprise 2014 Arlington Million winner. He actually preformed admirably in that year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf, but things have not gone according to plan since then. We have to seriously question his current form and whether this distance is his best.
The horse to beat is Long on Value (#11), who finally gets some class relief after a long string of stakes tries. His best effort would win this race, but he’s struggled with consistency over the past year. We have to use him out of respect, but we believe there are a couple of other options that will be better prices.
One is Jay Gatsby (#6), who couldn’t quite get 12 furlongs last time, but had previously been a strong second to the talented World Approval. We love the rider switch to Javier Castellano, and Jimmy Jerkens has been firing on all cylinders at this meet.
Our top selection is BLACKTYPE (#5).
He was never going to beat Ironicus in his return last time, but he also did not get the most clever ride, racing in the two-path, without cover, for the entire race. This horse needs to be reserved early and make one run, so regular rider Irad Ortiz is a much better fit. He’s run well over this Belmont turf course in the past and may get slightly lost in the wagering in favor of some of the bigger names.
On larger tickets, we could also include Vision Perfect (#2), who is slightly better on softer courses, Taghleeb (#3), who rarely wins but could work his way into the trifecta, and Enterprising (#10), who finally seems to be rounding back into form.
Exacta Key Box: 5 with 6,11
5 with 6,11 with 1,2,3,6,10,11
5 with 1,2,3,10 with 6,11