COVID-19 wreaked havoc on the 2020 Triple Crown. So much so that the schedule was reversed. Instead of going last, the Belmont Stakes opened Triple Crown betting action. Just as bad was that the crown jewel of the sport was delayed until Labor Day. Kentucky Derby tradition is about running on the first Saturday in May. To this end, the 2021 news looks promising. All expectations are for a “normal” Triple Crown schedule for the new year. Sports discovered fans and gamblers have a time clock. And football season is not the season for anything else.
2021 Kentucky Derby: Saturday, May 1, 2021
“The Run for the Roses” oozes with tradition and pageantry. Starting with being run on the first Saturday in May. The Kentucky Derby is annually the biggest horse race for online wagering. The betting handle for the Derby dwarfs all other races. Specifically, run at Churchill Downs this race is a mile and a quarter in length. Jockeys, owners, and trainers would rather win the Kentucky Derby than any other race. Louisville, Kentucky plays host to it all.
Of course, Churchill Downs has a mystique all to itself. To begin with, are the famed twin spires on the roof of the grandstand. The horses parade out to the song “My Old Kentucky Home.” Crowds will exceed over 170,000 on Derby Day. For all that is the adage about millionaires and the poor being equal at the Kentucky Derby. One thing still separates them. “Millionaire’s Row” is a spectacular and exclusive private box for the rich. Men will dress in fancy suits and shoes. But stealing the show are the stylish hats and dresses worn by the ladies.
2021 Preakness Stakes: Saturday, May 15, 2021
Baltimore, Maryland’s Pimlico Race Course is home to the Preakness Stakes. Second, on the Triple Crown odds schedule the Preakness is a mile and 3/16. Known as “The People’s Race” the Preakness is less formal than the Kentucky Derby. Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lucas said the Preakness is far more fun. Cause by the pressure of the Kentucky Derby. Months of preparation for Churchill Downs wears everyone out.
Preakness fans are there to party. Pimlico’s infield hosts wild parties that include binge drinking and lewd behavior. In fact, an advertisement for the Preakness commands all to “Get your Preak on!” While Kentucky Derby fans sneer at such revelry it works for Baltimore.
Most important of all the Kentucky Derby winner becomes a huge Preakness chalk. The moment the blanket is draped on the Derby-winning horse hype begins. For two weeks the Derby winner is touted as the next Triple Crown champion. Sharps will spend Preakness week seeking alternatives. In turn, the Kentucky Derby champion is consistently overpriced.
Another wild card about the Preakness Stakes is new horses. Ponies held out of the Kentucky Derby are well rested and can ambush those who ran at Churchill Downs. In view of this sharps seek out such horses. Betting value is often strong on horses that skipped the Derby.
2021 Belmont Stakes: Saturday, June 5, 2021
On the whole, the Belmont Stakes can be the most important race of the year. As long as a horse has won the first two Triple Crown legs. Otherwise, the Belmont is ignored by the masses.