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A Complete Guide to The Belmont Stakes

The Belmont Stakes is one of the most famous horse races in American horse racing. As the third and final race of The Triple Crown Series, The Belmont Stakes is a pivotal race. If a horse wins the first two legs of the Triple Crown, The Belmont is the final piece of the elusive puzzle that only 12 horses as of 2017 have achieved. While the race is popular every year regardless, it is extremely popular in years where a potential Triple Crown Winner comes to run. Legends such as Secretariat, American Pharaoh, and Seattle Slew have become legends at Belmont Park by winning The Triple Crown.

The Belmont Stakes is the oldest of The Triple Crown races. With the first race run in 1867, The Belmont Stakes has been around now for 150 years. Over this time, the race has seen different venues and track lengths as well as having crowned 12 Triple Crown winners. The Belmont Stakes is always the crowning site where Triple Crown winners are made or broken. It’s like Game 7 of any final series where you are positive history will be made or dreams dashed.

The race is often referred to as The Test of the Champion due to the track’s long length of 1.5 miles. This length is greater than both The Kentucky Derby and The Preakness Stakes which makes it very challenging for the horses that are racing. On top of that, The Belmont Stakes is run just three weeks after The Preakness Stakes and five weeks after The Kentucky Derby which is a challenging gauntlet of races packed very close to one another.

Quick Facts

Year First Run1867
Name of TrackBelmont Park
Location of TrackElmont, New York (United States)
Current Purse$1,500,000
Qualification3-year-old horses
Length of Track1.5 miles
Surface of TrackDirt
Track DirectionLeft handed
Race Record2:24 (Secretariat in 1973)

How To Watch

The Belmont Stakes has aired on many different broadcast channels over the year. For the 2017 Belmont Stakes, NBC Sports is the place to watch it. NBC Sports has a contract with the New York Racing Association that allows them to air the Belmont Stakes through the 2020 race. After 2020, we’ll update this page to reflect who wins the contract to air the Belmont Stakes there forward. In the past, the Belmont Stakes has aired on other channels including CBS, ABC, and ESPN.

Race Traditions

As with many US horse races, The Belmont Stakes has plenty of traditions that go along with the race itself. Belmont Stakes has a notable tradition for flowers, drinks, and songs. Many of these have changed over the years as Belmont Park has adapted to current trends, which makes it a popular horse racing betting event.

The Belmont Stakes uses a white carnation as the official flower of the race. Each year, the winner is draped in a 40-pound blanket of white carnations. It takes roughly 700 fresh carnations to make the winner’s blanket each year. The origin of the white carnation as the official flower of the race is unknown; however, white carnations are known to symbolize luck and love.

You’ll also find an official drink of The Belmont Stakes. Currently, the official drink is a Belmont Jewel which is a mixture of small batch bourbon, lemonade, and pomegranate. The Belmont Jewel has been the official drink of the race since 2011. Prior to that, the official race had been the White Carnation and the Belmont Breeze.

The current official song of The Belmont Stakes is currently Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York.” This song has been the official song of the race since 2011 and also was the official song from 1997 to 2009. In the past the official song of The Belmont Stakes was also “The Sidewalks of New York” and even Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind” had a brief one year stint in 2010.

Race History

In 1866, Leonard Jerome and August Belmont worked together to build the Jerome Park Racetrack in the Bronx. It was here in 1867 that the first Belmont Stakes was held. The race was held at Jerome Park through 1890 when it was located to another nearby Race Park.

Over the years, the race has been held in four different venues. After Jerome Park, it moved to Morris Park for a period of fifteen years. In 1905, the race was moved to the current location of Belmont Park where it has been run ever since minus five years from 1963 through 1967 while Belmont Park was getting a restoration and renovation.

In total, the Belmont Stakes has seen twelve horses awarded The Triple Crown.

The most recent winner was American Pharaoh in 2015. The first winner ever of The Triple Crown was Sir Barton back in 1919. At that time, the series was not even recognized as The Triple Crown yet Sir Barton was given the title and honor retroactively.

The race record of 2:24 at The Belmont Stakes is held by Secretariat who is perhaps the most famous horse in American horse racing history. In 1973, Secretariat dominated the competition at Belmont and finished the race by over 30 lengths in front of his competition. His win at Belmont completed the quest for The Triple Crown, and he became the 9th ever horse to earn this honor.

Past Winners

Belmont Stakes has helped to make some horses into household names over the years. Winners such as Seattle Slew, Affirmed, and American Pharaoh all made a name for themselves by winning Belmont Stakes to claim The Triple Crown victory. As the third and final race of The Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes is a game changer.

As discussed above, the track length for the Belmont Stakes has varied over the years. Due to varied track lengths, one cannot simply compare finish times as that would be misleading. Because of this, we wanted to build out an equation to help us stack up the winners against one another over the years regardless of track length.

What we came up with is what we call our Equalizer formula. This formula gives a time that takes into account the track length. The formula takes the finish time and divides that by the length of the track and ultimately provides a result of time per mile.  For example, the formula for 2016 would be Finish Time (2:28.5) / Track Length (1.5) = Equalizer (01:39.0).

Using the Equalizer column will allow you to see who the fastest horses were regardless of the track length. Not surprisingly, #1 on the list using the Equalizer formula is still the famed 1973 Triple Crown Winner Secretariat who holds the all-time race record. The Equalizer formula can also pinpoint the slowest winner ever. That title belongs to Ruthless from 1867 when the Belmont Stakes was run for the first time.

We’ve built out a chart below to show you the winners for each year as well as other information such as track length and jockey. You’ll also find a column with our Equalizer formula result. We’ll update this chart annually to have it reflect the most up to date winner information.

2017TapwritRober V. LaPentaTodd A. PletcherBridlewood FarmBelmont1 12-miles2:30.0201:40.0
2016CreatorIrad Ortiz, JrSteve AsmussenWinStar Farm LLCBelmont1 12-miles02:28.501:39.0
2015American Pharoah *Victor EspinozaBob BaffertZayat Stables, LLCBelmont1 12-miles02:26.701:37.8
2014TonalistJoel RosarioChristophe ClementRobert S. EvansBelmont1 12-miles02:28.501:39.0
2013Palace MaliceMike SmithTodd PletcherDogwood StableBelmont1 12-miles02:30.701:40.5
2012Union RagsJohn VelazquezMichael MatzPhyllis M. WyethBelmont1 12-miles02:30.401:40.3
2011Ruler on IceJose Valdivia, Jr.Kelly BreenGeorge and Lori HallBelmont1 12-miles02:30.901:40.6
2010DrosselmeyerMike SmithWilliam MottWinStar Farm LLCBelmont1 12-miles02:31.601:41.0
2009Summer BirdKent DesormeauxTim IceKalarikkal & Vilasini JayaramanBelmont1 12-miles02:27.501:38.4
2008Da’TaraAlan GarciaNick ZitoRobert V. LaPentaBelmont1 12-miles02:29.701:39.8
2007Rags to RichesJohn VelazquezTodd PletcherM. Tabor & D. SmithBelmont1 12-miles02:28.701:39.2
2006JazilFernando JaraKiaran McLaughlinShadwell FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:27.901:38.6
2005Afleet AlexJeremy RoseTimothy RitcheyCash is King LLCBelmont1 12-miles02:28.701:39.2
2004BirdstoneEdgar PradoNick ZitoMarylou Whitney StablesBelmont1 12-miles02:27.501:38.3
2003Empire MakerJerry BaileyRobert FrankelJuddmonte FarmsBelmont1 12-miles02:28.301:38.8
2002SaravaEdgar PradoKenneth McPeekNew Phoenix StableBelmont1 12-miles02:29.701:39.8
2001Point GivenGary StevensBob BaffertThe Thoroughbred Corp.Belmont1 12-miles02:26.601:37.7
2000CommendablePat DayD. Wayne LukasBob & Beverly LewisBelmont1 12-miles02:31.201:40.8
1999Lemon Drop KidJose SantosScotty SchulhoferJeanne G. VanceBelmont1 12-miles02:27.901:38.6
1998Victory GallopGary StevensW. Elliott WaldenPrestonwood FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.4
1997Touch GoldChris McCarronDavid HofmansFrank StronachBelmont1 12-miles02:28.801:39.2
1996Editor’s NoteRene R. DouglasD. Wayne LukasOverbrook FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:29.001:39.3
1995Thunder GulchGary StevensD. Wayne LukasMichael TaborBelmont1 12-miles02:32.001:41.3
1994Tabasco CatPat DayD. Wayne LukasReynolds/OverbrookBelmont1 12-miles02:26.801:37.9
1993Colonial AffairJulie KroneScotty SchulhoferCentennial FarmsBelmont1 12-miles02:30.001:40.0
1992A.P. IndyEd DelahoussayeNeil DrysdaleTomonori TsurumakiBelmont1 12-miles02:26.101:37.4
1991HanselJerry BaileyFrank L. BrothersLazy Lane FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:28.101:38.7
1990Go And GoMichael KinaneDermot K. WeldMoyglare Stud FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:27.201:38.1
1989Easy GoerPat DayC. R. McGaughey IIIOgden PhippsBelmont1 12-miles02:26.001:37.3
1988Risen StarEd DelahoussayeLouie J. Roussel IIILouie J. Roussel IIIBelmont1 12-miles02:26.401:37.6
1987Bet TwiceCraig PerretJimmy CrollBlanche P. LevyBelmont1 12-miles02:28.201:38.8
1986Danzig ConnectionChris McCarronWoody StephensHenryk de KwiatkowskiBelmont1 12-miles02:29.801:39.9
1985Creme FraicheEddie MapleWoody StephensBrushwood StablesBelmont1 12-miles02:27.001:38.0
1984SwaleLaffit Pincay, Jr.Woody StephensClaiborne FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:27.201:38.1
1983CaveatLaffit Pincay, Jr.Woody StephensAugust Belmont IVBelmont1 12-miles02:27.801:38.5
1982Conquistador CieloLaffit Pincay, Jr.Woody StephensHenryk de KwiatkowskiBelmont1 12-miles02:28.201:38.8
1981SummingGeorge MartensLuis BarreraCharles T. Wilson, Jr.Belmont1 12-miles02:29.001:39.3
1980Temperence HillEddie MapleJoseph B. CanteyLoblolly StableBelmont1 12-miles02:29.801:39.9
1979CoastalRuben HernandezDavid A. WhiteleyWilliam Haggin PerryBelmont1 12-miles02:28.601:39.1
1978Affirmed *Steve CauthenLaz BarreraHarbor View FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:26.801:37.9
1977Seattle Slew *Jean CruguetWilliam H. Turner, Jr.Karen L. TaylorBelmont1 12-miles02:29.601:39.7
1976Bold ForbesAngel Cordero, Jr.Laz BarreraE. Rodriguez TizolBelmont1 12-miles02:29.001:39.3
1975AvatarBill ShoemakerTommy DoyleArthur A. Seeligson, Jr.Belmont1 12-miles02:28.201:38.8
1974Little CurrentMiguel A. RiveraLou RondinelloDarby Dan FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.5
1973Secretariat *Ron TurcotteLucien LaurinMeadow StableBelmont1 12-miles02:24.001:36.0
1972Riva RidgeRon TurcotteLucien LaurinMeadow StudBelmont1 12-miles02:28.001:38.7
1971Pass CatcherWalter BlumEddie YowellOctober House FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:30.401:40.3
1970High EchelonJohn L. RotzJohn W. JacobsEthel D. JacobsBelmont1 12-miles02:34.001:42.7
1969Arts and LettersBraulio BaezaJ. Elliott BurchRokeby StablesBelmont1 12-miles02:28.801:39.2
1968Stage Door JohnnyHeliodoro GustinesJohn M. Gaver, Sr.Greentree StableBelmont1 12-miles02:27.201:38.1
1967DamascusBill ShoemakerFrank Y. Whiteley, Jr.Edith W. BancroftAqueduct1 12-miles02:28.801:39.2
1966AmberoidWilliam BolandLucien LaurinReginald N. WebsterAqueduct1 12-miles02:29.601:39.7
1965Hail To AllJohnny SellersEddie YowellZelda CohenAqueduct1 12-miles02:28.401:38.9
1964QuadrangleManuel YcazaJ. Elliott BurchRokeby StablesAqueduct1 12-miles02:28.401:38.9
1963ChateaugayBraulio BaezaJames P. ConwayDarby Dan FarmAqueduct1 12-miles02:30.201:40.1
1962JaipurBill ShoemakerBert MulhollandGeorge D. Widener, Jr.Belmont1 12-miles02:28.801:39.2
1961SherluckBraulio BaezaHarold YoungJacob SherBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.5
1960Celtic AshBill HartackThomas J. BarryJoseph E. O’ConnellBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.5
1959Sword DancerBill ShoemakerJ. Elliott BurchBrookmeade StableBelmont1 12-miles02:28.401:38.9
1958CavanPete AndersonThomas J. BarryJoseph E. O’ConnellBelmont1 12-miles02:30.201:40.1
1957Gallant ManBill ShoemakerJohn A. NerudRalph LoweBelmont1 12-miles02:26.601:37.7
1956NeedlesDavid ErbHugh L. FontaineD & H StableBelmont1 12-miles02:29.801:39.9
1955NashuaEddie ArcaroJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:29.001:39.3
1954High GunEric GuerinMax HirschKing RanchBelmont1 12-miles02:30.801:40.5
1953Native DancerEric GuerinBill WinfreyAlfred G. Vanderbilt IIBelmont1 12-miles02:28.601:39.1
1952One CountEddie ArcaroOscar WhiteSarah F. JeffordsBelmont1 12-miles02:30.201:40.1
1951CounterpointDavid GormanSylvester VeitchC. V. WhitneyBelmont1 12-miles02:29.001:39.3
1950MiddlegroundWilliam BolandMax HirschKing RanchBelmont1 12-miles02:28.601:39.1
1949CapotTed AtkinsonJohn M. Gaver, Sr.Greentree StableBelmont1 12-miles02:30.201:40.1
1948Citation *Eddie ArcaroHorace A. JonesCalumet FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:28.201:38.8
1947PhalanxRuperto DonosoSylvester VeitchC. V. WhitneyBelmont1 12-miles02:29.401:39.6
1946Assault *Warren MehrtensMax HirschKing RanchBelmont1 12-miles02:30.801:40.5
1945PavotEddie ArcaroOscar WhiteWalter M. Jeffords, Sr.Belmont1 12-miles02:30.201:40.1
1944Bounding HomeGayle SmithMatt BradyWilliam Ziegler, Jr.Belmont1 12-miles02:32.201:41.5
1943Count Fleet *Johnny LongdenDon CameronFannie HertzBelmont1 12-miles02:28.201:38.8
1942Shut OutEddie ArcaroJohn M. Gaver, Sr.Greentree StableBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.5
1941Whirlaway *Eddie ArcaroBen A. JonesCalumet FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:31.001:40.7
1940BimelechFred A. SmithWilliam A. HurleyEdward R. BradleyBelmont1 12-miles02:29.601:39.7
1939JohnstownJames StoutJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:29.601:39.7
1938PasteurizedJames StoutGeorge M. OdomCarol Harriman PlunkettBelmont1 12-miles02:29.401:39.6
1937War Admiral *Charley KurtsingerGeorge ConwayGlen Riddle FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:28.601:39.1
1936GranvilleJames StoutJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:30.001:40.0
1935Omaha *Willie SaundersJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:30.601:40.4
1934Peace ChanceWayne D. WrightPete CoyneJoseph E. WidenerBelmont1 12-miles02:29.201:39.5
1933HurryoffMack GarnerHenry McDanielJoseph E. WidenerBelmont1 12-miles02:32.601:41.7
1932FairenoTommy MalleyJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:32.801:41.9
1931Twenty GrandCharley KurtsingerJames G. Rowe, Jr.Greentree StableBelmont1 12-miles02:29.601:39.7
1930Gallant Fox *Earl SandeJim FitzsimmonsBelair StudBelmont1 12-miles02:31.601:41.1
1929Blue LarkspurMack GarnerHerbert J. ThompsonEdward R. BradleyBelmont1 12-miles02:32.801:41.9
1928VitoClarence KummerMax HirschAlfred H. CosdenBelmont1 12-miles02:33.201:42.1
1927Chance ShotEarl SandePete CoyneJoseph E. WidenerBelmont1 12-miles02:32.401:41.6
1926CrusaderAlbert JohnsonGeorge ConwayGlen Riddle FarmBelmont1 12-miles02:32.201:41.5
1925American FlagAlbert JohnsonGwyn R. TompkinsGlen Riddle FarmBelmont1 38-miles02:16.801:39.5
1924Mad PlayEarl SandeSam HildrethRancocas StableBelmont1 38-miles02:18.801:40.9
1923ZevEarl SandeSam HildrethRancocas StableBelmont1 38-miles02:19.001:41.1
1922PilloryC. H. MillerThomas J. HealeyRichard T. Wilson, Jr.Belmont1 38-miles02:18.801:40.9
1921Grey LagEarl SandeSam HildrethRancocas StableBelmont1 38-miles02:16.801:39.5
1920Man o’ WarClarence KummerLouis FeustelGlen Riddle FarmBelmont1 38-miles02:14.201:37.6
1919Sir Barton *Johnny LoftusH. Guy BedwellJ. K. L. RossBelmont1 38-miles02:17.401:39.9
1918JohrenFrank RobinsonAlbert SimonsHarry P. WhitneyBelmont1 38-miles02:20.401:42.1
1917HourlessJames H. ButwellSam HildrethAugust Belmont, Jr.Belmont1 38-miles02:17.801:40.2
1916Friar RockEverett HaynesSam HildrethAugust Belmont, Jr.Belmont1 38-miles02:22.001:43.3
1915The FinnGeorge ByrneEdward W. HeffnerHenry C. HallenbeckBelmont1 38-miles02:18.401:40.7
1914Luke McLukeMerritt BuxtonJohn F. SchorrJohn W. SchorrBelmont1 38-miles02:20.001:41.8
1913Prince EugeneRoscoe TroxlerJames G. Rowe, Sr.Harry P. WhitneyBelmont1 38-miles02:18.001:40.4
1910SweepJames H. ButwellJames G. Rowe, Sr.James R. KeeneBelmont1 38-miles02:22.001:43.3
1909Joe MaddenEddie DuganSam HildrethSam HildrethBelmont1 38-miles02:21.601:43.0
1908ColinJoe NotterJames G. Rowe, Sr.James R. KeeneBelmont1 38-milesN/AN/A
1907Peter PanGeorge MountainJames G. Rowe, Sr.James R. KeeneBelmont1 38-milesN/AN/A
1906BurgomasterLucien LyneJohn W. RogersHarry P. WhitneyBelmont1 38-miles02:20.001:41.8
1905TanyaGene HildebrandJohn W. RogersHarry P. WhitneyBelmont1 14-miles02:08.001:42.4
1904DelhiGeorge M. OdomJames G. Rowe, Sr.James R. KeeneMorris Park1 14-miles02:06.601:41.3
1903AfricanderJohn BullmanRichard O. MillerHampton StableMorris Park1 38-miles02:21.701:43.1
1902MastermanJohn BullmanJohn J. HylandAugust Belmont, Jr.Morris Park1 38-miles02:22.601:43.7
1901CommandoHenry SpencerJames G. Rowe, Sr.James R. KeeneMorris Park1 38-miles02:21.001:42.5
1900IldrimNash TurnerH. Eugene LeighH. Eugene LeighMorris Park1 38-miles02:21.201:42.7
1899Jean BereaudRichard ClawsonSam HildrethSydney PagetMorris Park1 38-miles02:23.001:44.0
1898Bowling BrookFred LittlefieldR. Wyndham WaldenA. H. & D. H. MorrisMorris Park1 38-miles02:32.001:50.5
1897Scottish ChieftainJoe ScherrerMatt ByrnesMarcus DalyMorris Park1 38-miles02:23.301:44.2
1896HastingsHenry GriffinJohn J. HylandBlemton StableMorris Park1 38-miles02:24.501:45.1
1895BelmarFred TaralEdward FeakesPreakness StablesMorris Park1 14-miles02:11.501:45.2
1894Henry of NavarreWillie SimmsByron McClellandByron McClellandMorris Park1 18-miles01:56.501:43.6
1893ComancheWillie SimmsGus HannonEmpire StableMorris Park1 18-miles01:53.201:40.7
1892PatronWilliam HaywardLewis StuartLewis StuartMorris Park1 14-miles02:17.001:49.6
1891FoxfordEdward R. GarrisonM. DonavanC. E. RandMorris Park1 14-miles02:08.801:43.0
1890BurlingtonPike BarnesAlbert CooperHough Bros.Morris Park1 14-miles02:07.801:42.2
1889EricWilliam HaywardJohn HugginsA. J. CassattJerome Park1 12-miles02:47.301:51.5
1888Sir DixonJim McLaughlinFrank McCabeDwyer Bros. StableJerome Park1 12-miles02:40.301:46.8
1887HanoverJim McLaughlinFrank McCabeDwyer Bros. StableJerome Park1 12-miles02:43.501:49.0
1886Inspector BJim McLaughlinFrank McCabeDwyer Bros. StableJerome Park1 12-miles02:41.001:47.3
1885TyrantPaul DuffyC. ClaypoolJames B. A. HagginJerome Park1 12-miles02:43.001:48.7
1884PaniqueJim McLaughlinJames G. Rowe, Sr.Dwyer Bros. StableJerome Park1 12-miles02:42.001:48.0
1883George KinneyJim McLaughlinJames G. Rowe, Sr.Dwyer Bros. StableJerome Park1 12-miles02:42.501:48.3
1882ForesterJim McLaughlinLewis StuartAppleby & JohnsonJerome Park1 12-miles02:43.001:48.7
1881SauntererTom CostelloR. Wyndham WaldenGeorge L. LorillardJerome Park1 12-miles02:47.001:51.3
1880GrenadaW. HughesR. Wyndham WaldenGeorge L. LorillardJerome Park1 12-miles02:47.001:51.3
1879SpendthriftGeorge EvansThomas PuryearJames R. KeeneJerome Park1 12-miles02:42.701:48.5
1878Duke of MagentaW. HughesR. Wyndham WaldenGeorge L. LorillardJerome Park1 12-miles02:43.501:49.0
1877CloverbrookC. HollowayJeter WaldenE. A. ClabaughJerome Park1 12-miles02:46.001:50.7
1876AlgerineBilly DonohueThomas W. DoswellDoswell & Co.Jerome Park1 12-miles02:40.501:47.0
1875CalvinBobby SwimAnsel WilliamsonHal P. McGrathJerome Park1 12-miles02:42.301:48.2
1874SaxonGeorge BarbeeW. PriorPierre Lorillard IVJerome Park1 12-miles02:39.501:46.3
1873SpringbokJames G. Rowe, Sr.David McDanielDavid McDanielJerome Park1 58-miles03:01.701:51.8
1872Joe DanielsJames G. Rowe, Sr.David McDanielDavid McDanielJerome Park1 58-miles02:58.201:49.7
1871Harry BassettWalter MillerDavid McDanielDavid McDanielJerome Park1 58-miles02:56.001:48.3
1870KingfisherEdward D. BrownRollie ColstonDaniel SwigertJerome Park1 58-miles02:59.501:50.5
1869FenianC. MillerJacob PincusAugust BelmontJerome Park1 58-miles03:04.301:53.4
1868General DukeBobby SwimA. ThompsonMcConnell & Co.Jerome Park1 58-miles03:02.001:52.0
1867RuthlessGilbert PatrickA. Jack MinorFrancis MorrisJerome Park1 58-miles03:05.001:53.8

*Designates Triple Crown Winners

**The Belmont Stakes was not run in 1911 and 1912 due to the Hart-Agnew law which was an anti-gambling law from the State of New York.

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