The 153rd Belmont Stakes arrive amid a controversial and intriguing Triple Crown season.
Preakness winner Rombauer will try to claim his second consecutive Triple Crown race, but Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit and his trainer, Bob Baffert, are not in Saturday’s field. Rombauer romped past favorites Medina Spirit and Midnight Bourbon at Pimlico Race Course on May 15 to win the 146th Preakness Stakes.
Medina Spirit failed a drug test immediately following the Derby, and Wednesday a second test confirmed the presence of betamethasone, a corticosteroid. Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, then announced Baffert would be suspended for two years, effective immediately, from all CDI-owned racetracks. The New York Racing Association, which runs the Belmont, banned Baffert indefinitely and prevented him from entering any horses in the Belmont Stakes.
Essential Quality, who finished fourth as the favorite in the Kentucky Derby but did not run the Preakness, enters as the favorite Saturday. Essential Quality is one of five horses who competed in the Derby and are coming back for the Belmont, joining Hot Rod Charlie (third in Derby), Known Agenda (ninth), Bourbonic (13th) and Rock Your World (17th).
Overtook, trained by Todd Pletcher, is the only horse in the Belmont field who hasn’t already competed in a Triple Crown race.
Here is all the information you need to get ready to watch the 153rd Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y:
Post time for the 153rd Belmont Stakes is 6:49 p.m EST.
NBC will televise the race and will begin its coverage at 5 p.m. ET. NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) has a pre-race show beginning at 3 p.m. ET.
The 2021 Belmont Stakes can be streamed on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app.
A Grade I Thoroughbred stakes races, the Belmont Stakes is 1½ miles, or 12 furlongs, which makes it the longest race in the Triple Crown.
The 2021 field
PP Horse, trainer, jockey, latest odds
(Odds as of Noon ET Saturday)
1. Bourbonic, Todd Pletcher, Kendrick Carmouche, 9-1
2. Essential Quality, Brad Cox, Luis Saez, 2-1
3. Rombauer, Michael McCarthy, John Velazquez, 8-1
4. Hot Rod Charlie, Doug O’Neill, Flavien Prat, 3-1
5. France Go de Ina, Hideyuki Mori, Ricardo Santana Jr., 19-1
6. Known Agenda, Todd Pletcher, Irad Ortiz Jr., 5-2
7. Rock Your World, John Sadler, Joel Rosario, 4-1
8. Overtook, Todd Pletcher, Manny Franco, 13-1
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 2021 Belmont Stakes live stream: Post time, TV, odds for Saturday race