Belmont Stakes: The Crown Jewel of Horse Racing-2023 title by Arcangelo


Horse racing has long been associated with excitement, elegance, and a touch of grandeur. Among the prestigious races that captivate fans and participants alike, the Belmont Stakes holds a special place. As the third and final leg of the illustrious Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes takes center stage, drawing enthusiasts from around the world to the iconic Belmont Park. In this blog, we will explore the history, traditions, winners, and unique aspects of the Belmont Stakes, delving into the essence of this thrilling race.


At the heart of the horse racing world, the Belmont Stakes stands tall as a testament to the sport’s endurance, glory, and legacy. With a rich history spanning over a century, this annual event has become a symbol of equine excellence and human passion.

What is the Belmont Stakes?

The Belmont Stakes is an American Grade I thoroughbred horse race held annually at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. It is the oldest of the three Triple Crown races and is contested on a 1.5-mile dirt track. The race attracts top-class three-year-old horses, aiming to secure their place in racing history.

History of the Belmont Stakes

  • Early Years: The Belmont Stakes made its debut in 1867, making it one of the oldest races in the United States. It was named after August Belmont Sr., a prominent financier and sportsman who played a pivotal role in establishing Belmont Park.
  • Triple Crown: The concept of the Triple Crown, comprising the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes, came into existence in the 1930s. The Belmont Stakes became the final and most demanding leg, often determining the Triple Crown winner.
  • Memorable Races: Over the years, the Belmont Stakes witnessed remarkable races that etched their names in history. From spectacular comebacks to heartbreaking defeats, these moments continue to be celebrated and remembered by racing enthusiasts.
  • Arcangelo won Belmont Stakes 2023 by taking the lead at the top of the stretch and won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, making Jena Antonucci the first female trainer to win the race in its 155 years.

The Belmont Park

  • Location and Track: Belmont Park, situated just outside New York City, provides an enchanting setting for the Belmont Stakes. Its vast expanse offers a unique and challenging track for the horses and a panoramic view for the spectators.
  • The Big Sandy: The nickname given to the Belmont Park track, “The Big Sandy,” reflects its sandy composition and long stretch that poses a demanding test of stamina for the contenders.

Prestige and Importance of the Belmont Stakes

Being the final leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes carries immense prestige and importance in the world of horse racing. It is a true test of a thoroughbred’s abilities, separating the exceptional from the ordinary.

The Triple Crown

  • Kentucky Derby: The first jewel of the Triple Crown, the Kentucky Derby, sets the stage for the arduous journey towards immortality. Only the most promising three-year-olds make it to the starting gate at Churchill Downs.
  • Preakness Stakes: The second leg, the Preakness Stakes, continues the quest for the Triple Crown. Held at Pimlico Race Course in Maryland, this race often creates intense anticipation as the Triple Crown dream takes shape.
  • Belmont Stakes as the Final Leg: The Belmont Stakes presents the ultimate challenge, both in distance and significance. Its grueling 1.5-mile track pushes horses to their limits, providing a thrilling finale to the Triple Crown.

Belmont Stakes Traditions and Celebrations

  • Trophy and Garland of Carnations: The victor of the Belmont Stakes is awarded the August Belmont Trophy, a magnificent silver bowl symbolizing triumph. Additionally, the winning horse is adorned with a garland of white carnations, representing purity and achievement.
  • The Call to Post: The familiar bugle call resonates through the air, signaling the imminent start of the race. The captivating sound adds to the excitement and heralds the arrival of the horses onto the track.
  • Fashion and Hats: The Belmont Stakes is not only a race but also a glamorous social affair. Spectators, showcase their fashionable attire and don elegant hats, adding a touch of elegance to the event.

Iconic Belmont Stakes Winners

  • Secretariat: No conversation about the Belmont Stakes is complete without mentioning Secretariat’s legendary performance in 1973. Widely regarded as the greatest racehorse of all time, Secretariat’s record-breaking victory continues to inspire awe and admiration.
  • Affirmed: In 1978, Affirmed and Alydar engaged in a gripping battle in the Belmont Stakes, with Affirmed emerging victorious by a mere head. This thrilling duel between two exceptional horses remains etched in racing history.
  • American Pharoah: After a 37-year-long drought, American Pharoah captivated the world in 2015 by becoming the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed. His mesmerizing performance brought the Belmont Stakes back into the spotlight.

Notable Jockeys and Trainers

The Belmont Stakes has witnessed the skills and strategies of numerous accomplished jockeys and trainers throughout its history. From Eddie Arcaro to Bob Baffert, these individuals have left an indelible mark on the race and earned their place among the greats.

Recent Belmont Stakes Races

Each year, the Belmont Stakes delivers thrilling races and surprises that keep spectators on the edge of their seats. Recent editions have showcased the talent and determination of both equine and human athletes, providing unforgettable moments.

The Atmosphere and Fan Experience

  • Tailgating and Parties: The Belmont Stakes is not just about the race; it’s a celebration of camaraderie and shared passion. Fans gather in the parking lots, engaging in lively tailgating parties, further enhancing the festive atmosphere.
  • Food and Beverages: Delicious food and refreshing beverages are an integral part of the Belmont Stakes experience. From traditional favorites to gourmet offerings, there is something to satisfy every palate.

Belmont Stakes and Charity

The Belmont Stakes also serves as a platform for charitable initiatives. Through partnerships and fundraising efforts, the race contributes to various causes, making a positive impact on the community.

Challenges and Controversies

  • Timing and Distance: The demanding 1.5-mile distance of the Belmont Stakes poses a unique challenge for horses that may excel at shorter distances. Finding the right balance of speed and stamina is crucial for success.
  • Drug Testing: Like any major sporting event, the Belmont Stakes faces the challenge of maintaining integrity and fair competition. Stringent drug testing protocols are in place to ensure a level playing field.


The Belmont Stakes, steeped in history and tradition, stands as a testament to the enduring allure of horse racing. From thrilling races to iconic champions, the race captures the hearts and imaginations of fans worldwide. As the ultimate test of a thoroughbred’s ability and stamina, the Belmont Stakes continues to inspire and awe, cementing its place as the crown jewel of horse racing.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Is the Belmont Stakes the most challenging race in the Triple Crown?

Yes, the Belmont Stakes is widely considered the most challenging race in the Triple Crown. With its 1.5-mile distance, it tests the endurance and stamina of the horses, making it a true test of champions

How long has the Belmont Stakes been held?

The Belmont Stakes has been held since 1867, making it one of the oldest and most prestigious horse races in the United States.

Which horse holds the record for the fastest Belmont Stakes time?

Secretariat holds the record for the fastest Belmont Stakes time. In 1973, he blazed through the track, completing the race in an astonishing 2 minutes and 24 seconds.

Are there any special traditions associated with the Belmont Stakes?

Yes, the Belmont Stakes has several special traditions. The winning horse is adorned with a garland of white carnations, and the victor is awarded the August Belmont Trophy. The bugle call to post and the fashionable attire, including elegant hats, are also iconic traditions.

How can I attend the Belmont Stakes?

To attend the Belmont Stakes, you can purchase tickets through the official Belmont Park website or authorized ticketing platforms. The event attracts a large crowd, so it’s advisable to secure your tickets in advance. Enjoy the thrilling atmosphere and witness the excitement firsthand at Belmont Park.

Who won the Belmont Stakes 2023?

Arcangelo won Belmont Stakes 2023 by taking the lead at the top of the stretch and won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, making Jena Antonucci the first female trainer to win the race in its 155 years.

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