Now that 2016 came to a close and a new year ushers in the promise of Spring, those who love EZ horse betting start thinking about the road to the Triple Crown. The early months of a new year are an exciting time for horseracing fans as they watch prep races and begin to identify the horses that they believe will be strong contenders in racing’s most important events—the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes.
We’ve put together a little preview and guide of the 2017 Triple Crown races and preps that will help you enjoy the series and perhaps increase your chances of winning your horseracing bets. Before you get started reading, why not take a minute and check out our recommended racebooks? You’ll find many of them offer great sign-up bonuses at this time of year.
The Triple Crown Races
As always, the Triple Crown races in 2017 will consist of the following:
- The Kentucky Derby. The 143rd Run for the Roses will be held at Churchill Downs on Saturday May 6, 2017. On May 5, 2017 the Kentucky Oaks will be contested beneath the Twin Spires. This is the marquee event of the Triple Crown and it draws thousands of fans to Louisville, Kentucky each year while millions watch on television. Numerous celebrities are in attendance, and watching people at the Kentucky Derby is almost as fun as watching the horses. The entire week leading up to the event is one big party.
- The Preakness Stakes. This year is the 142nd running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore, Maryland. The race takes place on Saturday May 20, 2017, two weeks after the Kentucky Derby. Each year features two days of stellar horseracing which includes the running of the Black Eyed Susan on Friday. Thousands of racing fans will congregate in the Pimlico infield for a party that features prominent musical artists.
- The Belmont Stakes. The “Test of the Champion” will be held on Saturday June 10th, 2017 at Belmont Park in New York. The final jewel of the Triple Crown, this is where the magic happens. The Triple Crown can only be won at Belmont Park after a single horse has won the first two events. The race is part of a week-long racing carnival that features high-quality horseracing on Friday and Saturday. There is something magical about this racetrack with the majestic skyline of New York City looming in the background.
The Triple Crown Prep Races
In order to qualify for entry into the Kentucky Derby and ultimately compete for the Triple Crown, a horse must earn points by faring well in races that have been designated as preps for the Derby. These races are ran all over the country at different racetracks and often present many great EZ Horse Betting opportunities. The prep races also give you a chance to observe the Triple Crown contenders in advance and evaluate their chances of winning one of the three Triple Crown races.
Here is a list of important prep races that you should mark on your calendar:
- The Jerome. This race will be held at Aqueduct in New York on January 7, 2017, and is the first prep race of the new year. The winning horse is awarded 10 points toward eligibility for the Kentucky Derby.
- The Lecomte. Worth 10 points, this race will be held on January 21, 2017 at the Fair Grounds Racecourse in New Orleans.
- The Holy Bull. Annually contested at Gulfstream Park in Florida, this race is often a turning point for many young horses that are coming into Triple Crown form. This year’s event will be held on February 4, 2017 and will award 10 points to the winner.
- The Risen Star. This the first race in what has come to be termed the Kentucky Derby Championship Series. This is when the major prep races begin. The race will be held at the Fairgrounds Racecourse in New Orleans on February 25, 2017 and there are 50 points up for grabs.
- The Tampa Bay Derby. There have been years when the winner of this race has gone on to do very well in Kentucky. Scheduled for March 11, 2017 at Tampa Bay Downs, this is an important prep that awards 50 points.
- The UAE Derby. A part of the legendary Dubai Racing Carnival, the UAE Derby will be held on March 25, 2017 at Meydan Racecourse in the UAE. The prestige of this race is so great that the winner will receive 100 points.
- The Arkansas Derby. Often a strong indicator or how a horse will perform in the Kentucky Derby, the Arkansas Derby will be held at Oaklawn Park on April 15, 2017. This race is one of only six prep races that award 100 points to the winner, and it is one of the last chances for horses to earn the points they need to enter the Kentucky Derby.