UPDATE: I've made a couple of corrections to the list of possible Belmont Stakes entries by scratching Alternation (his connections announced a couple of days ago they would skip the Belmont to prepare for the Haskell and Travers), and adding Monzon.
ORIGINAL POST: With the two big names from this year's Triple Crown series, - Animal Kingdom and Shackleford - expected to meet-up at the Belmont Stakes on June 11th (post time 6:32 ET, TV: NBC), the third leg is shaping up to be a competitive one, even if we aren't looking at a Triple Crown winner.
Here's a look at some of the horses that could potentially find their way into the starting gate at Belmont Park in two and a half weeks.
Isn't He Perfect
Master of Hounds
Mucho Macho Man
Niether Astrology or Dialed In will take part in the Belmont.
Just a quick glance at the possible entries for the Belmont makes it clear that we are likely looking at another slow pace situation, which helps to alleviate some of the distance concerns on the pedigree side. There's no better way to help a horse to outrun it's pedigree than to allow it to lope along for eight or nine furlongs before demanding a lot of extra energy. The Belmont pace tends to be on the slow side anyway, but it certainly doesn't appear that we'll have anything resembling a fire drill in the opening furlongs. I think Secretariat's record will be quite safe this year.
Master of Hounds, who ran pretty well in the Derby in his first effort on dirt, would be in intriguing contender in this race. If the pace is slow, Master of Hounds probably won't have to expend too much energy in the early going and he won't find himself with too much work to do in the latter stages. With much of the betting dollars probably gravitating to Animal Kingdom, Shackleford and Nehro, Master of Hounds might be an interesting long shot play.