Belmont Stakes 2016 odds: Morning line released

During a Belmont Stakes preview teleconference, trainer Dale Romans shared his thoughts on getting horses mentally and physically ready for the 1 ½ mile trip over the Belmont oval.

Hall-of-fame jockey Kent Desormeaux will saddle Preakness victor Exaggerator to run from the outside at Saturday's $1.5 million Belmont Stakes, the final leg of United States thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown.

The 2016 Kentucky Derby victor Nyquist is not running after dropping out last month because of a fever from a high white cell count. Asmussen trains 10-1 shot Creator and last-minute entry Gettysburg, a 30-1 long shot likely to set the pace in a field loaded with closers.

Exaggerator, the son of Curlin, has shown continued excellence and versatility in his career.

What excited trainer Keith Desormeaux more, though, was the way Exaggerator went out after the finish.

There's no Triple Crown on the line, and no rematch between the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winners. Bred for long races, this colt has trained forwardly for the longest race he might ever run.

There was still more to come after the renovation break as well. He came back two weeks later to upset previously undefeated Derby victor Nyquist in the Preakness at Pimlico Race Course, arriving in NY on May 29. He also loves wet tracks and comes from way back.

"It's a logical move for us if you're not set on the Preakness", said Todd Pletcher, who trained both Rags to Riches and Palace Malice and has Destin on a similar schedule this year, as he watched his horses train at Belmont Park.

In the absence of his rival Nyquist, Exaggerator is by far the most accomplished entrant in the race.

Postime for the 2016 Belmont Stakes is 6:32 p.m. EST.



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