Belmont Stakes Countdown–May 25, 2015

Belmont Stakes Countdown–May 25, 2015

A sloppy track didn’t stop American Pharoah from winning the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), and it certainly didn’t stop him this morning when the Triple Crown hopeful went out and galloped ten furlongs over a sloppy track at Churchill Downs.

According to the Churchill Downs Barn Notes for May 25th, Bob Baffert’s assistant trainer Jimmy Barnes was happy with American Pharoah’s gallop: “He went very nice and looked good,” Barnes said. “He likes an off track. Everything seems fine.”

Bob Baffert is expected to arrive at Churchill Downs tomorrow morning to check in on American Pharoah and determine when the colt will breeze prior to the Belmont Stakes. It’s possible that American Pharoah will post two timed workouts before the Belmont, with the first coming as early as tomorrow morning.

A video of American Pharoah’s morning gallop has been posted on YouTube by Churchill Downs and can be viewed below:

In other Belmont Stakes news, Mubtaahij breezed five furlongs in 1:03.16 yesterday morning at Belmont Park, going in company with his stablemate Umgiyo, who was timed in 1:04.12. The work was the third for Mubtaahij in the span of eight days, an impressive stretch of work that suggests Mubtaahij is doing well as the Belmont Stakes approaches. The time may not have been very fast, but it’s important to note that a clocker for the Daily Racing Form caught Mubtaahij’s workout in a time that was more than a second faster than the official time.


With thirteen days remaining until the Belmont Stakes, here is the current list of expected starters:

Horse Jockey Trainer
American Pharoah Victor Espinoza Bob Baffert
Carpe Diem Unknown Todd Pletcher
Conquest Curlinate Shaun Bridgmohan Mark Casse
Frammento Mike Smith Nick Zito
Frosted Joel Rosario Kiaran McLaughlin
Keen Ice Kent Desormeaux Dale Romans
Madefromlucky Unknown Todd Pletcher
Materiality Unknown Todd Pletcher
Mubtaahij Irad Ortiz, Jr. Mike de Kock
Tale of Verve Gary Stevens Dallas Stewart
War Story Colby Hernandez Tom Amoss

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Follow J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman"):

J. Keeler Johnson is a writer, blogger, videographer, and all-around horse racing enthusiast who was drawn to the sport by Curlin’s quest to become North America’s richest racehorse. A great fan of racing history, he considers Dr. Fager to be the greatest racehorse ever produced in America, but counts Zenyatta as his all-time favorite. He lives in Wisconsin and also writes for the blog Unlocking Winners.

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