The 48-day Belmont Park 2021 spring/summer meet begins Thursday, April 22, and runs through Sunday, July 11. A total of 59 stakes races worth nearly $17 million highlights the meet, which begins opening weekend without fans in the stands.
“Although Belmont Park will be closed to spectators throughout opening weekend, NYRA looks forward to seeing fans in the stands right back where they belong this spring and summer,” New York Racing Association President and CEO Dave O’Rourke said.
The Belmont spring/summer meet draws the best jockeys, trainers and horses. Jockeys Jose Ortiz and brother Irad Ortiz Jr. finished first and second in a short 11-day meet at Aqueduct. They combined to win 41 of 95 races. Those two lead a group of jockeys that includes John Velazquez, Joel Rosario, Luis Saez and Javier Castellano. Trainers Todd Pletcher and Chad Brown are annually battling for the training title, and Pletcher has four horses running in the 2021 Kentucky Derby. Both trainers will be ready with horses for the 153rd running of the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 5.
America’s Day at the Races, produced by the NYRA, shows live racing from Belmont through Fox Regional Network on FS2.
Belmont Park 2021 spring/summer meet graded stakes schedule
Belmont racing runs Thursday through Sunday. Post time is 1 p.m. EST, except on Thursdays in May and June, when post time is 3:05 p.m. EST.
There are 11 Grade 1 races during the spring/summer meet, and a total of seven races have purses of $700,000 or higher.
The Belmont Stakes Racing Festival runs from Thursday, June 3, through Saturday, June 5. The festival will encompass 17 total stakes, including eight Grade 1 races on Belmont Stakes Day, capped by the $1.5 million “Test of the Champion” for 3-year-olds in the 1 ½-mile final leg of the Triple Crown.
Notable graded stakes include:
Saturday, May 1
- $200,000 Fort Marcy (Grade II, turf)
- $200,000 Sheepshead Bay (Grade II, turf, fillies and mares)
- $200,000 Westchester (Grade II)
Saturday, May 8
- $150,000 Beaugay (Grade III, turf, fillies and mares)
- $700,000 Man o’ War (Grade I, turf)
- $200,000 Peter Pan (Grade III)
- $150,000 Runhappy (Grade III)
- $150,000 Vagrancy Handicap (Grade III, fillies and mares)
Saturday, May 29
- $200,000 Pennine Ridge (Grade II, turf)
Thursday, June 3
- $200,000 Intercontinental (Grade III, turf, fillies and mares)
- $200,000 Wonder Again (Grade III, turf, fillies)
Friday, June 4
- $300,000 Bed O’ Roses (Grade III, fillies and mares)
- $400,000 Belmont Gold Cup (Grade II, turf)
- $750,000 New York (Grade II, turf, fillies and mares)
- $300,000 True North (Grade II)
Saturday, June 5
- $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (Grade I)
- $400,000 Jackpocket Jaipur (Grade I, turf) **
- $400,000 Brooklyn (Grade II)
- $500,000 Just A Game (Grade I, turf, fillies and mares)
- $500,000 Acorn (Grade I, turf, fillies)
- $750,000 Manhattan (Grade I, turf)
- $1 million Metropolitan (Grade I) **
- $500,000 Odgen Phipps (Grade I, fillies and mares) **
- $400,000 Wood Stephens (Grade I)
** Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” qualifiers:
Saturday, June 26
- $250,000 Mother Goose (Grade II, fillies)
Saturday, July 3
- $400,000 Suburban Handicap (Grade II)
Sunday, July 4
- $250,000 John Nerud (Grade II)
Monday, July 5
- $250,000 Dwyer (Grade II)
Saturday, July 10
- $1 million Belmont Derby Invitational (Grade I, turf)
- $700,000 Belmont Oaks Invitational (Grade 1, fillies)
- $150,000 Victory Ride (Grade III, fillies)
Belmont Park runs almost no two-turn races due to its 1 1/2-mile circumference. Races up to 1 1/8 miles are one-turn affairs, which nearly negates any inside bias the track might have in route races.
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