Large field expected to challenge California Chrome's shot at history

05/20/2014 07:26 AM

Despite being almost three weeks away, the Belmont Stakes is already attracting major players looking to knock off California Chrome.

Commanding Curve, who skipped the Preakness after coming way off the pace to claim second in the Kentucky Derby, is expected to run. The colt finished 1 3/4 lengths behind California Chrome and is trained by Dallas Stewart.

Preakness runner-up Ride On Curlin is also ready to square off with California Chrome again after finishing 1 1/2 lengths behind him last Saturday. Ride On Curlin finished 7th in the Kentucky Derby

Hometown favorite Samraat will also take another shot at the champ. Samraat, who finished 5th at the Kentucky Derby, skipped the Preakness to prepare for the Belmont. The New York-bred colt finished 2nd in the Wood Memorial in April and won the Gotham Stakes back in March. Both stakes races were at Aqueduct.

Also expected to join the field is Danza, the Arkansas Derby winner who finished third in the Kentucky Derby.

Rounding out the field will be Intense Holiday, who finished 12th in the Derby, and newcomers Tonalist, who won last Saturday’s Peter Pan Stakes at Belmont Park and Commissioner, who finished second. The 1 1/8 mile Grade 2 Peter Pan Stakes is considered a traditional prep race for the Belmont Stakes.

The 146th Belmont Stakes will be held June 7 at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. The 1 1/2 mile race is the last and longest race in the Triple Crown.

Trey Eckerle

Trey Eckerle joined cn|2 in June 2013. A graduate of WKU, Trey grew up in Louisville and enjoys having a front row seat as Director to Kentucky sports and politics. He can be reached at 502-792-1106 or trey.eckerle@charter.com

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