The field is set for the 2023 Belmont Stakes, and Florida Derby winner Forte is favored to deliver trainer Todd Pletcher his fifth victory in the Test of the Champion on Saturday at Belmont Park. The reigning two-year-old champion, Forte is the 5-2 favorite in the 2023 Belmont Stakes odds. He drew post No. 6 among the 2023 Belmont Stakes post positions. Blue Grass Stakes winner Tapit Trice is the second choice at 3-1 in the nine-horse 2023 Belmont Stakes field. He will leave from the No. 2 spot among the 2023 Belmont Stakes horses. Arkansas Derby winner Angel of Empire (7-2) rounds out the top three 2023 Belmont Stakes contenders according to oddsmakers.
The 2023 Belmont Stakes post time is 7:02 p.m. ET. With an accomplished and evenly-matched field set to enter the starting gate on Saturday, you’ll want to see what SportsLine writer Gene Menez has to say before making any 2023 Belmont Stakes picks.
A former reporter and editor at Sports Illustrated, Menez covered an array of sports, including horse racing, for the magazine and its website for almost 14 years. Between 2010 and 2012, he served as SI’s handicapper for the Triple Crown races and correctly predicted Super Saver to win the Kentucky Derby in 2010. In 2015, while writing for Sports on Earth, Menez accurately gave out the Kentucky Derby superfecta (American Pharoah, Firing Line, Dortmund and Frosted). In 2017, he tweeted out his Kentucky Derby picks, including Always Dreaming to win, and hit the Pick 4.
In a span of seven races earlier this year, he cashed the winner of the Lecomte Stakes, the exacta in the Southwest Stakes, the winner of the Holy Bull Stakes, the winner of the Sam F. Davis Stakes, the place horse of the Rebel Stakes, and the trifecta in the Jenny Wiley Stakes. Three weeks ago, he nailed National Treasure’s win at the Preakness Stakes. Anyone who has followed him is way up.
Now, he has handicapped the 2023 Belmont Stakes lineup, made his picks and constructed his bets. You can only see them here.
Top 2023 Belmont Stakes expert predictions
One surprise: Menez is low on Forte, even though he is the top favorite. Last year’s 2-year-old champion, Forte has lost only once in seven career starts. In his last start, he looked hopelessly beaten before rallying for a victory over eventual Kentucky Derby winner Mage.
However, because of being scratched from the Kentucky Derby and being forced to miss the Preakness Stakes, Forte faces the daunting challenge of going 1 1/2 miles off a 10-week layoff. “As the field races down the stretch, I would not be surprised to see Forte come up short,” Menez told SportsLine. Menez is using Forte only sparingly in 2023 Belmont Stakes bets. See which other 2023 Belmont Stakes horses to fade here.
Another curveball: Menez is high on Arcangelo, even though he’s an 8-1 longshot. Arcangelo has relevant experience and success on his side, as he won the Peter Pan Stakes at Belmont Park, the site of the Belmont Stakes 2023, last month. His other three starts have come at Gulfstream Park, where he’s finished first, second, and fourth.
“This son of Arrogate and a Tapit mare has the breeding to excel at the Belmont distance,” Menez told SportsLine. “Jockey Javier Castellano has been riding great recently and has a knack of getting horses to outrun their odds in the Belmont. If the Test of the Champion is not too much too soon for Arcangelo, he could be right there at the end.” See which 2023 Belmont Stakes contenders he is backing at SportsLine.
How to make 2023 Belmont Stakes bets
Menez’s top pick is a horse who’s “sitting on a big effort.” He also is high on a double-digit longshot who is coming off a “sneaky good race.” He’s sharing which 2023 Belmont Stakes horses to back only at SportsLine.
So who wins the Belmont Stakes 2023? What double-digit longshot has a big chance, and how has Menez constructed his wagers? Check out the latest 2023 Belmont Stakes odds below, then visit SportsLine to see Menez’s picks for the Belmont Stakes, all from the expert who nailed the Preakness and has crushed prep races.
2023 Belmont Stakes odds, horses, post draw