The Belmont Derby (G1), the first major summer turf race for three-year-old horses, anchors the Belmont Park card on Saturday, July 10. The 2021 Belmont Derby drew a field of nine three-year-old turf horses to compete for a $1,000,000 purse.
The field includes several of the best American three-year-old turf horses including American Turf (G1) winner Du Jour. The race also drew two runners from overseas, including Cazoo Derby (G1) contender Bolshoi Ballet and Italian Derby (G2) winner Tokyo Gold.
Where to Bet the Belmont Derby
This is the place for expert analysis to help you choose a winner in the Belmont Derby. However, it also matters where you bet the Belmont Derby. You need to find a sportsbook that gives you the most for your money. That includes trusted deposit and cash-out features, the best odds and bonuses, and an easy-to-use interface.
Choosing the best from the hundreds of online sportsbooks can be difficult. Fortunately, our horse betting experts can help you know where to go. They have researched the world of online sportsbooks, and our guide to the best online sportsbooks can help you select the one that fits your betting style best. Then, all you have to do is make an account and place confident bets!
History of the Belmont Derby
The Belmont Derby was originally known as the Jamaica Handicap, and was originally run on the dirt. The race was switched to the turf in 1994, and has grown steadily in importance since then. Winners since the race moved to turf have included Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) winner Artie Schiller (2004), Canadian Horse of the Year Up With the Birds (2013), Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) winner Oscar Performance (2017), and Travers winner Catholic Boy (2018).
Since 2019, the Belmont Derby has been the first leg of the New York Racing Association’s Turf Triple Series, which draws the best turf sophomores to the Empire State. The series continues with the Saratoga Derby (G1) on August 7, and finishes with the Jockey Club Derby at Belmont Park on Saturday, September 18. The Jockey Club Derby offers its winner a Win and You’re In berth to the Breeders’ Cup Turf.
Belmont Derby Horses
This is the official field for the 2021 Belmont Derby. This includes post positions for each horse, as well as their trainers and jockeys.
- Palazzi (Mark Casse/Tyler Gaffalione)
- Bolshoi Ballet (Aidan O’Brien/Ryan Moore)
- Safe Conduct (Philip Serpe/Jose Lezcano)
- Sainthood (Todd Pletcher/Joel Rosario)
- Du Jour (William Mott/Flavien Prat)
- Hard Love (Jonathan Thomas/Manuel Franco)
- Tokyo Gold (Shinya Kobayashi/John Velazquez)
- Cellist (George Arnold, II/Julien Leparoux)
- Hidden Enemy (Steven Asmussen/Luis Saez)
As the Belmont Derby draws closer, make sure to check the odds offered on the field by top online sportsbooks. Your best bet is to check them periodically to see what they are offering, and make sure to place your bet to lock in the odds if you are getting an overlay on your horse.
Free Belmont Derby Picks
With a field of 11, the Ohio Derby drew an intriguing mix of rising stars and interesting longshots. Let’s look at the field and find out who has the best chances to win the 2021 Ohio Derby.
Belmont Derby Handicapping
Bolshoi Ballet will almost certainly be the favorite in the 2021 Belmont Derby. Though he ran off the board in the Derby at Epsom, he is proven at a mile and a quarter. His trainer Aidan O’Brien is one of the top turf trainers in the world, and he trained 2016 winner Deauville.
However, Bolshoi Ballet will be a short price, and this will not be an easy assignment. His frontrunning style may leave him battling with sharp American speed early, and with rain in the forecast at Belmont Park, Bolshoi Ballet may not get the firmer ground he prefers. For a horse likely to be bet as if he is invincible, there are cracks in his armor.
Du Jour will be the most heavily bet of the American horses, coming out of the best stateside three-year-old turf race so far, the American Turf. He is pace-versatile and bred well to stretch out. However, he makes his first start after a move away from the Bob Baffert barn, and he has yet to prove how well he handles less-than-firm going.
Hard Love is an intriguing longer shot. He has yet to try graded stakes company, but has run races to suggest he is fast enough to fit at this level. He also ran a good second in his only start over less-than-firm turf, chasing an uncontested leader. He is tactical enough to sit off the pace and do well with that speed to run at, he has a good pedigree to stretch out, and trainer Jonathan Thomas already won this race three years ago with Catholic Boy.
Palazzi deserves strong consideration for the exotics. He is a closer who reliably fires, meaning he will enjoy having a sharp pace to chase. Cellist is another who should be able to find the frame. He has tactical versatility, he can handle when things do not go his way in a race, and his pedigree is as good as you’ll see in America for getting this mile and a quarter distance.
Belmont Derby Best Bets
Here are the best bets to make on the 2021 Belmont Derby.
- $20 Win: #6 Hard Love
- $1 Exacta Box: #6 Hard Love, #2 Bolshoi Ballet, #5 Du Jour
- $0.50 Trifecta Box: #6 Hard Love, #2 Bolshoi Ballet, #5 Du Jour, #1 Palazzi
- $0.10 Superfecta Box: #6 Hard Love, #2 Bolshoi Ballet, #5 Du Jour, #1 Palazzi, #8 Cellist