Horse Racing

2024 Belmont Derby Preview

FanDuel Staff
FanDuel Staff
2024 Belmont Derby Preview

The prestigious New York Turf Triple gets underway Saturday, July 6, with the Grade 1, $750,000 Belmont Derby! Even with Belmont Park being closed for construction, this prestigious sophomore turf race is alive and well. It will be run at 1 3/16 miles, half a furlong shorter than its typical distance, over the grass at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Do not confuse this race with the Belmont Stakes: though they are both highly prestigious races for sophomores, this race happens on the lawn. That explains its position a little later in the year, when the weather is more dependably nice for turf horses, and the turf division has begun to take some shape.

The series of major grass races for three-year-old males is one of the newest traditions in horse racing, with the first New York Turf Triple happening in 2019. These grassy analogs to the Triple Crown races continue through the summer. The second leg happens on August 3, with the Saratoga Derby (G1) at Saratoga Race Course. The final leg is the Jockey Club Derby back at Aqueduct in October. No horse has swept all three races yet, though they can come closer to becoming the first horse to do it by winning the Belmont Derby!

2024 Belmont Derby Information

  • Race Date: Saturday, July 6
  • Track: Aqueduct Racetrack
  • Post Time: 3:08 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time
  • Distance: 1 3/16 miles
  • Age/Sex: three-year-olds
  • Where to Watch: FanDuel Racing, Fox Sports 2
  • Where to Bet: FanDuel Racing

Belmont Derby Draw and Odds

This is the field for the 2024 Belmont Derby, including post positions, trainers, jockeys, and morning-line odds for each horse.

1Legend of TimeCharlie ApplebyWilliam Buick5-2
2White PalominoChad BrownFlavien Prat5-1
3Royal MajestyBill MottJunior Alvarado6-1
4TrikariGraham MotionJohn Velazquez7-2
5EndlesslyMichael McCarthyUmberto Rispoli6-5

Belmont Derby Prep Race Results

The five horses in the Belmont Derby come out of just three different races. However, all of those last-out starts came in graded-stakes races, so the entire field has experience against quality company.

The Pennine Ridge (G2) is the traditional local prep for the Belmont Derby. That race happened May 25 at Aqueduct, and the top three finishers from that race proceed to the Belmont Derby. Legend of Time got up by a head to win that race over the pacesetting White Palomino, while the up-and-coming Royal Majesty tracked the pace and chased on for the show.

Trikari stretches out again after a close third-place finish in the Penn Mile (G3), a turf race on May 31 at Penn National. Endlessly is the only horse coming in from a race that was not on the turf. Though he has previous grass experience as a juvenile, he most recently finished 9th in the Kentucky Derby (G1) at Churchill Downs.

Belmont Derby Contenders

These are the five contenders in the 2024 Belmont Derby, in order of their post position.

  1. Legend of Time: The winner of the Pennine Ridge, Legend of Time is not the morning-line favorite but has a strong chance to be the actual betting favorite once the gates fly open, just based on his win in the local Prep combined with trainer Charlie Appleby’s excellent record with horses he brings across the Atlantic. He has the class and should have no trouble with the distance. However, in such a short field, he is unlikely to be as forward as Trikari and White Palomino. Furthermore, with rain in the forecast on Friday and Saturday, the clunker in the American Turf is a serious concern. He seems like a horse who is coming to North America for better ground, and at a short price, that makes him less than appealing as a likely chalk.
  2. White Palomino: Trainer Chad Brown has captured most of the top-class turf prizes in American racing, but the Belmont Derby still eludes him. He has a legitimate chance with this paradoxically-named dark bay. White Palomino has raced just three times, but he graduated at 1 3/16 miles over good Keeneland turf two starts back, then led most of the way before being caught in the Pennine Ridge last out. He has to turn the tables on Legend of Time, but with that one fitting the profile of a European who has come to the States in search of firmer ground, the rain in the forecast helps White Palomino. He also has that all-important speed in a short field. He did not draw as well as Trikari and has a good chance to be outjumped or at least persistently hounded by that foe. But, he can win even from just off the running and he did run well in the Pennine Ridge from the fence.
  3. Royal Majesty: He has tables to turn on Legend of Time and White Palomino from his third-place finish in the Pennine Ridge last out, but that was only his graded-stakes debut, and there are reasons he can move forward in this. Though his maiden and first-level allowance wins had him coming from further back, he showed in the Pennine Ridge that he can run a good race from closer up. His allowance win came over good ground at Keeneland, meaning he does not need firm footing to run an excellent race. And, being by Frankel out of Crown Queen (a class horse in her own right, and a Smart Strike half to the great Royal Delta), this Bill Mott trainee should improve further over the longest trip he has tackled to date.
  4. Trikari: This Graham Motion trainee was dismissed at 47-1 in the American Turf two starts back, but tracked the pace and won the race by 1 ½ lengths. Even though he was the beaten favorite in the Penn Mile, the shorter distance did him no favors, and he was still only beaten a neck for top money. Now, he stretches back out. He gets some give in the ground, like he did in the American Turf. And, he is fast enough to make the early running in a race with a short field. Even if he doesn’t outjump White Palomino to the top, he has the tactical speed to track outside, meaning John Velazquez has the most options for a favorable trip in the Belmont Derby.
  5. Endlessly: Endlessly has spent his sophomore season on Tapeta and dirt this year. He won both the El Camino Real Derby and the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) in impressive fashion over synthetic surfaces. After originally being pointed to the American Turf, he was instead routed to the Kentucky Derby to try dirt for the first time. Settled in last early, he made some late improvement, crossing the wire ninth behind Kentucky Derby winner Mystik Dan. Instead of using the Preakness Stakes bid that he earned by winning the El Camino Real, he has been pointed back to the lawn. He is 3-for-4 on the grass, including a pair of graded-stakes wins, and he is bred for stamina. However, he is likely to be closing from the back in a short field. Furthermore, he has only raced over California firm ground, so the rain leading up to the Belmont Derby makes it questionable whether he’ll handle the footing.

Belmont Derby FAQ

Q: When is the Belmont Derby?

A: Saturday, July 6, 2024 at 3:08 Eastern Daylight Time.

Q: Where is the Belmont Derby?

A: The race happens at Aqueduct Racetrack in Jamaica, Queens, New York. The race typically happens at Belmont Park, but with that track under construction, it is being temporarily relocated.

Q: Which trainer has the most wins in the Belmont Derby?

A: Since the old Jamaica Handicap was moved to July and recast as the Belmont Derby, the only trainer to win this race more than once is Aidan O’Brien. He won with both Deauville (2016) and Bolshoi Ballet (2021). All of the trainers entered in the 2024 edition are going for their first victory in the race.

Q: Who is the favorite for the Belmont Derby?

A: Endlessly is the 6-5 morning-line favorite for the Belmont Derby. However, keep an eye on Legend of Time, the 5-2 morning-line second choice. Given Charlie Appleby’s record of selecting horses to bring in from Europe for major American turf stakes, it would be no surprise to see him be the actual favorite at post time.

Q: Who is the best Belmont Derby jockey?

A: Jose Lezcano and Jose Ortiz have both won the Belmont Derby twice. Lezcano won with both Mr Speaker (2014) and Henley’s Joy (2019), while Ortiz did so with Oscar Performance (2017) and Far Bridge (2023). Neither of these riders have a call this year. Among riders who do have a call in 2024, only one has won the race before: Junior Alvarado (Royal Majesty) rode Gufo to victory in 2020.

Q: Who won the Belmont Derby in 2023?

A: Far Bridge won the 2023 edition of the Belmont Derby for trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey Jose Ortiz. Neither has a horse in the 2024 edition.

New to FanDuel Racing? Place your first bet on any race at any track and get it back in Racing Bonus if it doesn’t win! Valid in participating states. See here for full terms and conditions. Learn about today’s other offers at FanDuel Sportsbook Promos.

Looking for horse racing betting opportunities? Head over to FanDuel Racing to see all of today’s horse racing odds.