Fresh off a dazzling performance in the Preakness Stakes, Rombauer has already been shipped to Belmont Park in Nassau County to begin preparations for the 2021 Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 5. However, trainer Michael McCarthy will turn over the reins from Flavien Prat, who rode Rombauer to an impressive 3 1/2-length win at Pimlico, to Kentucky Derby winner John Velazquez. Prat was previously committed to ride Hot Rod Charlie, who will return to action after finishing third in the Kentucky Derby, while Velazquez was freed up by Medina Spirit being suspended along with Bob Baffert.
The latest 2021 Belmont Stakes odds list Hot Rod Charlie at 9-2 with Rombauer just behind him at 5-1. However, former Kentucky Derby favorite Essential Quality is the 7-2 favorite as a son of Tapit, whose offspring have won three of the last seven Belmont Stakes. But before you scour the 2021 Belmont Stakes field and make your horse racing predictions for the third leg of the Triple Crown, be sure to check out the 2021 Belmont Stakes picks from SportsLine’s Jody Demling.
A fixture in the horse racing world who has been writing about, talking about and betting on races for years, Demling enters the Belmont Stakes 2021 after a major heater in 2020: At one point last year, he picked the winners of six straight races: the Saudi Cup, Gotham Stakes, Rebel Stakes, Louisiana Derby, Florida Derby and Belmont Stakes.
At last year’s Belmont, Demling said Tiz the Law was clearly the class of the field, and Barclay Tagg’s horse pulled away for a convincing 3 3/4-length victory.
In 2018, he was all over Justify, jockey Mike Smith, and trainer Bob Baffert to make horse racing history at Belmont Park. The result: Justify became just the 13th Triple Crown winner ever, and anyone who followed Demling’s lead cashed in too.
Demling is at his best in the biggest horse races in the world. He has hit nine of the last 13 Derby-Oaks doubles at Churchill Downs. That means he held a ticket with the winners of both races all but four times in the last 13 years. He’s also called nine of the last 17 Preakness winners, keenly understanding when the Kentucky Derby winner was poised for victory or a massive upset. Anyone who has followed him is up huge.
Now, with the 2021 Belmont Stakes field taking shape, Demling is sharing his picks and predictions at SportsLine. Go here to see them.
Top 2021 Belmont Stakes predictions
One shocker: Demling isn’t picking Preakness winner Rombauer to win the 2021 Belmont Stakes. Rombauer gave both of his connections (trainer Michael McCarthy and jockey Flavien Prat) a win in their first starts in the Preakness Stakes on May 15. However, Prat had previously committed to ride Hot Rod Charlie, so now Velazquez will slide into Rombauer’s saddle.
Velazquez is a Hall of Famer, but he’ll have to quickly learn the tendencies of a horse who benefited greatly from being put in perfect position by Prat at the Preakness and against a much stronger field. Owners John and Diane Fradkins admitted that they thought the Kentucky Derby pace would work to Rombauer’s detriment, which is why they skipped the Run for the Roses. Now, several top contenders from that race will return on over a month’s rest to run the Belmont Stakes, and with pedigrees that indicate they’re built for 1 1/2 miles like Essential Quality, Hot Rod Charlie and Known Agenda.
How to make 2021 Belmont States picks, bets
Instead, Demling is especially high on an underdog who “will be in the mix again” at Belmont, giving his backers a huge payday. Demling is sharing which horse it is, along with his entire projected leaderboard, over at SportsLine.
Which horse wins the Belmont Stakes 2021? And which underdog is a must-back? Check out the latest 2021 Belmont Stakes odds below, then visit SportsLine to see Demling’s picks for the Belmont Stakes.
2021 Belmont Stakes odds (from SportsLine experts)
Essential Quality 7-2
Hot Rod Charlie 9-2
Rock Your World 6-1
Known Agenda 9-1
Rebel’s Romance 11-1
Promise Keeper 15-1
France Go de Ina 28-1