Belmont Sprint Championship Offers Sizzle

Belmont Sprint Championship Offers Sizzle

Category : News - Thu 03/07/2014 - 17:43 EDT

The $400,000, Grade III Belmont Sprint Championship features a salty bunch of speedsters going seven furlongs on the main track July 5 as part of the inaugural Stars & Stripes Racing Festival in New York.

Al Stall’s Central Banker is the deserving 5/2 morning line favorite after an impressive win in the May 3 Churchill Downs Stakes on the Kentucky Derby undercard.  The four year-old Speightstown horse appears to be hitting his best stride at this stage in his career and has shown an affinity for the 7 furlong distance.  The aforementioned Churchill Stakes is run at that distance as is the Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita where he lost a photo finish. His closing style has been an asset at this specialty distance where true sprinters often come up short in the final furlong. 

Clearly Now and Salutos Amigos dangerous 

The Brian Lynch charge Clearly Now is the second choice at 3/1 after running third in the Churchill Downs Stakes behind Central Banker two starts back.  David Jacobson’s Salutos Amigos is an interesting item at 5/1 on the morning line after finishing third in the True North Stakes at Belmont.  Prior to that effort, Salutos Amigos reeled off three consecutive wins against allowance level foes. 

Palace draws ideal post position 

The Linda Rice trained Palace won the True North in his last start and is 7/2 on the morning line.  Palace also took the Grade III Fall Highweight Handicap in November at Aqueduct.  The speedy Palace draws advantageously with the number eight post position which should afford jockey Cornellio Valasquez the luxury of sizing up the early pace scenario.  The remaining runners are all double digit odds on the ML.   

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