Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York, will be the site for the 2016 edition of the $1,250,000 Travers Stakes, which will be led by futures betting top contender, Exaggerator. It is now Friday morning in the Big Apple, and thus, post positions, contenders futures odds and everyone else bettors need to make their winning horse racing predictions is now available.
Prior to getting into the top three favorites to win the Travers Stakes 2016, let’s quickly go over important race information and all the qualifications this year’s 14 contenders will be subjected to. For starters, horse racing betting aficionados should note that post time is scheduled for Saturday (Aug. 27) night at 8:44 p.m. ET – Race #11 on the Saratoga Race Course docket.
In addition, this Grade 1 race will be limited to three-year-old American-bred thoroughbreds and weight qualifications go as follows: 126 pounds (57 kg) for colts and geldings and 121 pounds (55 kg) for fillies. Finally, the 147th Travers Stakes will take place on a dirt surface and the distance traveled will be 1 1⁄4 miles (10 furlongs).
Given the magnitude of this race, it comes as no surprise that some of the biggest trainers and jockeys in American horse racing will be throwing their hats into the ring. This includes trainers Bob Baffert, Todd Pletcher, Keith Desormeaux and Steven Asmussen, as well as jockeys Kent Desormeax, Mike Smith, Joel Rosario and John Velazquez, just to mane a few.
Nevertheless, it’s all about the horses, and if futures oddsmakers are correct, there are three colts considered to be head and shoulders above the rest of the field in 2016. Without further ado, here’s a look at the top three horse racing betting favorites to win the 2016 Travers Stakes:
Exaggerator (3/1): Leading the way is Haskell Invitational (G1) champion, Exaggerator at 3/1 futures odds. Trained by Keith Desormeaux, the son of Curlin drew post position number seven, officially weighed in at 126 pounds, and, of course, will have controversial jockey, Kent Desormeax on mount. It’s certainly worth noting that his last appearance on this track went according to plan, as Exaggerator conquered the Saratoga Special (G2) in Aug. of last year. Since then, the Big Chief Racing, LLC, product has wins in the following events: Delta Downs Jackpot (G3), Santa Anita Derby (G1), Preakness Stakes (G1), and the aforementioned Haskell Invitational last month.
Connect (4/1): Listed as a dangerous 4/1 runner up is Connect. Also the son of Curlin, this colt is trained by Chad Brown, drew post position number 10, weighed in at 126 pounds and will be teaming up with jockey John Velazquez. Unlike Exaggerator, Connect lacks experience, as this will only be his fifth event and his first Grade 1 race. Nevertheless, he’s no stranger to the site and the conditions of this track, as he conquered the Curlin race here at Saratoga Race Course last month. Connect also has an Allow win to his credit as well as one of two MSWs entered.
American Freedom (6/1): Rounding out our top-three horse racing futures favorites is none other than Bob Baffert’s American Freedom at a very attractive 6/1 odds. The son of Pulpit races out of Gary and Mary West Stables Inc., drew post position number two, weighed in at 26 pounds and will have jockey Rafael Bejarano on mount Saturday night. As many may recall, American Freedom posted the biggest threat to Exaggerator at the Haskell Invitational, finishing in second place at Monmouth Park. Prior to that close call in Oceanport, New Jersey, American Freedom put together a two-race win streak, dominated the Iowa Derby (G3) and the Sir Barton, and also has an MSW win in April of this year.
- 2016 Travers Stakes 2016 Predictions: Exaggerator (3/1)
Travers Stakes 2016 Post Positions, Contenders & Futures Odds
- Arrogate: 10/1
- American Freedom: 6/1
- My Man Sam: 20/1
- Governor Malibu: 12/1
- Forever d’Oro: 30/1
- Anaximandros: 50/1
- Exaggerator: 3/1
- Destin: 10/1
- Gift Box: 12/1
- Connect: 4/1
- Majesto: 30/1
- Creator: 15/1
- Laoban: 15/1
- Gun Runner: 10/1