< How to Bet on Belmont Stakes




The road to the Triple Crown concludes with the Belmont Stakes in New York at Belmont Park. Known as the Test of the Champion, the Belmont is a 1 ½ mile race – the longest of the three Triple Crown races. The very first Belmont Stakes was even longer, 1 ⅝ miles. It was held at Jerome Park Racetrack on June 19, 1867. A filly named Ruthless won the four-horse race, earning $1,850 in prize money. Since then, the purse has increased to $1.5 million, offering $800,000 to the victor. The field size has also increased, with a maximum of 16 three-year-old colts, geldings and fillies eligible for entry.


With such a longstanding history, the Belmont Stakes is always popular with horse bettors. As for the crowds, they vary depending on what’s at stake. When there’s a Triple Crown hopeful on the field, crowd sizes have reached over 100,000. In 2015, the year American Pharoah won the Triple Crown, the audience had to be limited to 90,000 to ensure a more comfortable atmosphere than in 2014, when fan favourite California Chrome attracted 102,199 spectators.



Belmont Stakes Bet Types

People wanting to elevate their Belmont experience will find what they’re looking for in the betting section of our online racebook. There are plenty of different ways to bet on individual horses through straight wagers, and groups of horses through exotics. Not to mention the futures odds and prop bets that are always available for major events like the Belmont Stakes. We’ll break down how each bet works to make sure you know just how to bet on the Belmont Stakes.



Belmont Stakes Straight Bets (Win/Place/Show)

The straight bet is a great starting point for recreational bettors. All you need to do is pick one horse to succeed. You can bet on that horse to Win, Place or Show at the Belmont; each option comes with a unique risk/reward level. For a straight Win bet, your horse needs to win the race. This bet has the highest risk/reward level of the three straight bets. The Place bet requires your horse to finish first or second; you don’t need to pinpoint which of the top two spots the horse finishes in. The Show bet is softer yet, requiring your pick to finish anywhere in the top three.


With each bet, your money gets divided into separate pools. With the Win bet, it’s put in one pool, with the Place bet, it’s put in two pools, and with the Show bet, it’s put in three pools. The number of pools your money is put in affects the payout. Here’s how the payouts looked at the 2017 Belmont Stakes as an example.

Tapwrit won, paying:


$12.80 on Win
$6.50 on Place
$5 on Show



Belmont Stakes Exotic Bets Explained

Exotics comprise combinations of two or more horses in a single bet for jackpot-like payouts. People looking for a thrill at the track often go for these high-risk, high-reward options. That being said, these bets can be modified in different ways to reduce risk, ensuring that they appeal to all kinds of horse bettors. We’ll start with the exacta.



Exacta Betting on the Belmont Stakes

Exacta Betting on the Belmont Stakes

To make an exacta bet, you must predict the winner and runner up of the Belmont Stakes. Your money is going into a single pool that pays out if you get the right order of the top two finishers. In the 2017 Belmont Stakes, the exacta paid $45.20 on a $2 bet for Tapwrit finishing first and Irish War Cry finishing second.


Trifecta Betting on the Belmont Stakes

Predict the top three finishers in the right order for the trifecta of horse racing. This bet offers a big payout because your money is going into one pool that cashes in if you get the proper finishing order of first, second, and third place of the Belmont Stakes. In 2017, the trifecta paid $624 on a $2 bet for people who anticipated a Tapwrit—Irish War Cry—Patch finishing order.




Belmont Stakes: Everything You Need To Know



Superfecta Betting on the Belmont Stakes

It’s not easy, but if you predict the top four finishers in the proper order, you’d win a lot of cash through the superfecta. One again, your stake is going into one pool, which results in more bang for your buck. In the 2017 Belmont Stakes, the superfecta paid $4,486 on a $2 stake for superfecta bettors who nailed the following finishing order:


1. Tapwrit
2. Irish War Cry
3. Patch
4. Gormley



Quinella Betting on the Belmont Stakes

The quinella offers an opportunity for the risk-averse to get in on the exotic betting. The quinella bet has you guess the top two finishers of the Belmont in any order. Your bet will be put into two pools that cover both outcomes. Let’s say you want to include Lookin At Lee and Meantime in a quinella, your bet would be divided like this:


Pool No. 1
First: Tapwrit
Second: Irish War Cry


Pool No. 2
First: Irish War Cry
Second: Tapwrit


Because the bet is put in two pools, it pays less than the other exotics, but reduces risk, which is perfect for people looking to hedge their bets.



Belmont Stakes

What are Boxed Wagers for the Belmont Stakes?

To reduce the risk of the exotics, you can box them. By boxing an exotic wager, you remove the need to get the finishing order right. A quinella, which has you guess the top two finishers without needing to get them in the right order, is a boxed exacta. A boxed trifecta would have you guess the top three finishers and pay out if your three picks end up finishing in the money—regardless of order. This wager divides your stake into several pools to cover each possible scenario, and as a result, the payout will be smaller than what you get from the standard exotics.




What are Wheeled Bets for the Belmont Stakes?

For a bet that’s halfway between an exotic and a boxed wager, you can wheel your bet. A wheeled bet involves picking the exact finishing position of one or more horses and filling out the remainder of the wager with a group of horses. Let’s say you want to wheel a trifecta to reduce risk. You could pick a horse to win the race outright, then pick multiple horses to finish second and another group of horses to finish third. For an example of how that would look on a bet slip, see below:


First: Tapwrit
Second: Multiplier, Irish War Cry
Third: Gormley, Lookin At Lee, Twisted Tom


The more horses you include in the wheeled bet, the lower the payout will be.



Futures Betting on the Belmont Stakes

To bet on a race before the day of the event, check out the futures section of the racebook. Up to a month before race day, it has Belmont Stakes odds for potential contenders. The odds in the futures section are fixed, meaning the odds you see on the board are the odds you’ll be paid with if your bet wins. Horses who are scratched before the field is set are losses; however, if a horse is scratched after the field is set, it’s considered No Action.



Prop Betting on the Belmont Stakes

A proposition, also known as a prop bet, is a side bet that focuses on something other than the winners of a race. If there’s a potential Triple Crown winner entering the Belmont Stakes, there will always be a prop bet that let’s you put money on whether or not you think that horse will indeed win the Triple Crown.

In 2015, American Pharoah entered the Belmont Stakes having won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. Bodog Racebook offered the bet Will American Pharoah win the Belmont Stakes? in the Propositions section of the racebook. “Yes” was available at –130, and “No” was available for even money.



What is a Coupled Entry Wager for the Belmont Stakes?

Quite often, multiple Belmont Stakes contenders will share a trainer, or come from the same stable. When that happens, you can lump them together under a coupled entry. If any of the horses in the coupled entry win, the bet pays out. The 2017 edition of the Belmont Stakes had two horses trained by Todd Pletcher in Tapwrit and Patch. They could have been combined for a coupled entry and would have won since Tapwrit finished first. Had Patch finished first, the bet would have still paid out.



What is a Pick 3 and Pick 4 Wager for the Belmont Stakes?

The Pick 3 and Pick 4 Belmont Stakes betting options are great ways to earn a bigger payout by combining multiple races. As the names suggest, the Pick 3 includes three races and the Pick 4 includes four races for an even bigger payout. In each of these wagers, you’re betting on the winner of the race. Typically, the races are back to back on the race card, but these rules have softened over the years, and now you can get Pick 3 and Pick 4 bets for races that happen over two or three days.



What is a Daily Double Wager for the Belmont Stakes?

The two-race version of the Pick bets is the Daily Double. You’ll stake money on the winners of two races that usually are scheduled back to back on the race card, but that’s not always the case. For the Belmont Stakes Daily Double, you can wager on the Belmont Stakes and Belmont Gold Cup, which takes place the Friday before the Belmont Stakes.



Betting Tips for the Belmont Stakes

When betting on the Belmont Stakes for the first time, you’ll need to ask yourself if you want to back a single horse in a simple straightforward wager, or if you want to combine horses for a bigger payout. People who prefer the former will find three levels of risk with the straight wagers. The Show bet is the least risky, the Win bet is the most risky, and the Place bet is in the middle.


When betting on multiple horses, the exotics also offer three levels of risk. Exotics in their natural state come with the most risk and most reward. Boxed exotics are the least risky and offer more modest payouts. The wheeled bets are middle ground betting options, offering a balanced level of risk and reward.


Picking a bet that matches your gambling style is the first step to Belmont Stakes betting. The second step is making your selection(s), and for that, you need to assess the field and the race specs; this is where Belmont Stakes betting tips come in handy. At 1 ½ miles, the Belmont Stakes is the longest of the three Triple Crown races, so a racing style that is conducive to stamina is key.


• Stalkers are horses who stay just behind the frontrunners. They’ve done well traditionally at the Belmont Stakes.
• Closers are horses who trail behind and surge to the front in the stretch. They don’t typically win the Belmont. With such a long distance to cover, horses who get off to a slow start have a hard time catching up.
• Frontrunners are horses who lead the pack. They don’t typically win the Belmont because they often run out of gas by the end of the race. Of course, there are many exceptions, with American Pharoah leading the pack to a glorious Belmont Stakes win in 2015 coming to mind.


For a classic example of what often happens at the Belmont Stakes, we can look to the 2017 edition. Tapwrit got off to a strong start, but stayed back around fourth-place for the majority of the race. He was able to reserve his strength for a surge in the stretch, where he ultimately passed the frontrunners and won the Belmont Stakes. Doing some research on horse racing styles will help you stay ahead of the pack when it comes down to Belmont Stakes betting.

Enjoy the race!