Although post position is not as important as how a horse leaves the gate during the 1-1/2 mile Belmont Stakes, many people may find it significant that California Chrome has drawn the same #2 post position as Secretariat did before winning the 1973 Triple Crown. It should be noted, however, that “Big Red” (as he was affectionately known) actually started from the rail after Knightly Dawn was scratched. He then went on to win the Belmont by a record 31-lengths in 2:24 minutes.
Although no one expects Chrome to top Secretariat’s achievement, trainer, Art Sherman is plenty pleased by the pick and just hopes his horse can claim the Triple Crown as well.
“Going a mile and a half, it’s a good post position. At least you can save ground and see who is going to have the speed and where you land in the first turn,” he stated. “It’s going to be a jockey’s race anyhow, so it will be up to Victor (Espinoza) to ride the race the way he has been riding.”
With 11 horses going into the race, anything can happen, despite the fact that (on paper at least) California Chrome looks unbeatable. Those looking to foil his bid (in order of post position) include Medal Count (1); Matterhorn (3); Commanding Curve (4); Ride on Curlin (5); Matuzak (6); Samraat (7); Commissioner (8); Wicked Strong (9); General a Rod (10); and Tonalist (11).
Fans unable to make it to the track can view the 146th Belmont Stakes Saturday June 7th on channel 4. Post time is 6:52pm.