Zayat Stables’ Triple Crown hopeful American Pharoah drew post 5 for the $1.5 million Gr1 Belmont Stakes to be run June 6 at Belmont Park, and was installed as the 3-5 morning-line favourite during a June 3 ceremony at Rockefeller Center in New York.
The 3-year-old son of Pioneerof the Nile will be ridden again by Victor Espinoza for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert and will face rested Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) opponents Frosted, Materiality, Mubtaahij, Keen Ice, and Frammento—who all sat out the Xpressbet.com Preakness Stakes (gr. I)—as well as Preakness runner-up Tale of Verve and Peter Pan Stakes (gr. II) victor Madefromlucky.
Charles Fipke’s Tale of Verve drew post 2 with Hall of Famer Gary Stevens aboard for trainer Dallas Stewart and was assigned 15-1 odds on the morning line. Godolphin’s Frosted, fourth in the Derby, will break from post 2 with Joel Rosario in the irons and is second choice on the morning line, at 5-1.
Alto Racing’s Materiality (6-1), a troubled sixth in the Derby, and jockey John Velazquez will stand in post 8 with fellow Todd Pletcher trainee Madefromlucky (12-1) five spots to his left in post 3 with Javier Castellano.
Keen Ice (20-1), a head behind Materiality in the Kentucky Derby, drew post 7 with Hall of Fame jockey Kent Desormeaux aboard for trainer Dale Romans.
Frammento (30-1), who finished 11th in the Derby and drew post 4 with jockey Mike Smith, will try to be the third Triple Crown spoiler for trainer Nick Zito.
Eighth-place Derby finisher Mubtaahij (10-1), with jockey Irad Ortiz Jr.engaged to ride for the first time, will be assigned to the rail for trainer Mike de Kock.