Horse Racing Betting: 2021 Belmont Stakes Rumors Update

Posted by Derrick Harper on May 31, 2021 in

Less than a week separates us from the 153rd running of the “Test of the Champions,” and slowly, we’re getting a clearer picture of how the race will play out. A lot has happened in the weeks leading to the race, and we can expect a bit more changes in the coming days.

And while we can’t look into the future and tell you what awaits us this next week, what we can do is provide you with an update of what has happened, as well as Belmont Stakes news that could impact the final leg of the American Triple Crown. That being said, let’s jump right into action so you can bet against their Belmont Stakes odds.

Updated Horse Racing Betting Rumors for the 2021 Belmont Stakes

2021 Belmont Stakes Odds

  • Essential Quality +270
  • Rombauer +270
  • Hot Rod Charlie +600
  • Rock Your World +700
  • Known Agenda +800
  • Keepmeinmind +1000
  • Rebel’s Romance +1100
  • Promise Keeper +1400
  • Bourbonic +1600
  • Weyburn +2500
  • Overtook +2500
  • France Go de Ina +3000
  • Brooklyn Strong +3300

Brad Cox Believes Essential Quality is Ready for Belmont Stakes

The multiple Eclipse award-winning Thoroughbred racehorse trainer Brad Cox has publicly stated that he has high expectations for Essential Quality for the $1.5 million Grade 1 race. That isn’t too shocking for anyone who has been following Essential Quality, and his practice runs this week.

On the Churchill Downs main track, Essential Quality ran five furlongs, posting a time of 59.4 seconds with a gallop to 1:12.8 for six furlongs. Cox expressed his excitement about Essential Quality’s form, and you can’t blame him.

Some might still doubt the horses’ ability to win the Belmont Stakes following a disappointing fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby. But you have to remember it was the only loss on his resume, which includes four graded victories.

“His [Essential Quality] first work after the Derby he went a half in like 50,” said Cox. “He’ll work easily enough by himself, but we didn’t want to think that he didn’t get accomplished what we were looking for. We were looking for something in the neighbourhood of five-eighths in a minute. He travelled really well.”

Rombauer will have John Velazquez aboard

As announced earlier this week, Flavien Prat will not be racing Rombauer and will instead ride Hot Rod Charlie for Belmont Stakes. Although a somewhat weird decision to step away from a Triple Crown winner, it’s not like this move comes off as a big shock.

Prat is a regular at Del Mar and Santa Anita Park, where he rides Doug O’Neil’s horses, so it makes sense that he will take one of O’Neil’s colts to the Belmont Stakes.

On the other side, seeing John Velazquez take over for Prat makes a lot of sense as well. The 24-year-old Hall of Fame jockey has had immense success this season. He finished third in the Kentucky Derby with Medina Spirit and added a third-place finish in Preakness.

John Velazquez has won the Belmont Stakes twice before. With Rags To Riches in 2007 and with Union Rags in 2012.

He’s also one of the most experienced jockeys in the field. Since 1995, there were only two Belmont Stakes in which Velazquez wasn’t on track, marking this year’s race his 25th.

Rebel’s Romance Picking up the pace

Rebel’s Romance recorded his third official workout at the Belmont Park earlier this week in preparation for the big race. On Wednesday, Charlie Appleby’s horse posted his best performance since arriving in New York.

Rebel’s Romance ran six furlongs in 1:14.30 alongside Desert Pace. He started two lengths behind Desert Pace and caught up to him after only three furlongs in 37.05 seconds, covering the fifth furlong in just 1:00.53.

To that day, Rebel’s Romance never passed Desert Pace and followed his stablemate. That’s nothing new, since Rebel’s Romance rarely passes the leading horse and instead runs behind it, feeling like he’s done enough.

Seeing him change his ways is a welcome and promising change that should make Rebel’s Romance far more competitive on the track. It’s also a big reason why his Belmont Stakes betting odds have dropped from +1600 to only +1100 since the news of his improvement surfaced.

Will that be enough to get past Essential Quality and Rombauer is anyone’s guess, but we can definitely expect a solid showing from the three-year-old.