Essential Quality Favored To Win 2021 Belmont Stakes

  • Essential Quality is the betting favorite to win the Belmont Stakes with odds of +225.
  • Rombauer, the Preakness Stakes winner, has the second-shortest odds at +375.
  • Hot Rod Charlie (+400), Rock Your World (+425) and Known Agenda (+600) round out the top five choices.

ELMONT, N.Y – The final leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes, is set to take place on Saturday.

Essential Quality, the favorite prior to the Kentucky Derby, has the shortest odds to win while the Preakness winner, Rombauer, is the second favorite.

No Bob Baffert horses are entered in the race as the investigation into Medina Spirit is still ongoing and the suspension is still active.

Can Essential Quality Get Redemption?

Essential Quality was the odds-on favorite prior to the Kentucky Derby but finished fourth in a disappointing fashion. Now, racing for the first time since the Derby, he will be the betting favorite on sports betting sites once again.

2021 Belmont Stakes Odds To Win

  • 1. Bourbonic +1800
  • 2. Essential Quality +225
  • 3. Rombauer +375
  • 4. Hot Rod Charlie +400
  • 5. France Go De Ina +2800
  • 6. Known Agenda +600
  • 7. Rock Your World +425
  • 8. Overtook +2500

He will be considered the best horse in the field and it’s tough to argue against it.

Of the horses who finished ahead of him at the Kentucky Derby, Medina Spirit and Madaloun are not running which leaves just Hot Rod Charlie who Essential Quality has beaten previously in his career.

No Baffert Horses In A Small Field

One of the biggest storylines around this race will be the lack of Bob Baffert horses and the overall size of the field.

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There are only eight horses in the 2021 Belmont Stakes, the smallest field since 2015. Noticeably missing from the small field is any Baffert-trained horse.

Baffert and his horses, most notably the Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit, were suspended from the Belmont Stakes after his horse tested positive for a banned substance in the Derby.

Both of the possible Baffert entries, Medina Spirit and Concert Tour, would have likely been among the shortest odds in the field. However, their absence opens up the field for a number of different horses.

Notable Jockey Change

Flavian Prat, who rode Rombauer to a win in the Preakness Stakes, has switched off of Rombauer and will be the jockey for Hot Rod Charlie. Prat rode Hot Rod Charlie in the Kentucky Derby and finished in third, but it’s interesting nonetheless to give up your ride on the reigning Preakness winner.

With the opening on Rombauer, former Medina Spirit jockey John Velazquez will take over. Velazquez will be moving from the Kentucky Derby winner to the Preakness Stakes winner for the Belmont Stakes.

Rombauer is currently listed with the second shortest odds on online racebooks.