2012 Belmont Stakes
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Nasal Strip Controversy at 2012 Belmont Stakes

Published on 1 Jun 2012 at 14:07

June 1 - The 2012 Belmont Stakes will be run on Saturday June 9 at the Belmont Park race course in Elmont in New York. This will be the 144th running of the epic race which was first run in 1867.

The Belmont Stakes is the third leg of the US Triple Crown and has traditions similar to the other two legs. The winning horse is draped with a blanket of white carnations, just like the blanket of roses and black-eyed Susans for the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes respectively. In Belmont the post parade state song is currently “Empire State of Mind”. This song replaced “Theme from New York New York” in 2010.

Will There be a Triple Crown Winner?

The interest in the 2012 Belmont Stakes goes beyond tradition because there is a likelihood of a Triple Crown winner for the first time since Affirmed won all three legs in 1978. I’ll Have Another has already won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes and is now the odds on favourite for the Belmont Stakes.

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2012 Belmont Stakes

The news so far has little to do with the competition that I’ll Have Another will be facing, but focuses on the nasal strip that has been banned at New York Racing Association tracks at the discretion of stewards, despite being approved by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board.

I’ll Have Another has worn a nasal strip in each of the seven races he has run so far, including the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes.

Trainer Doug O’Neill is clear that the nasal strip controversy will not get in the way of his horse’s chance of winning the Triple Crown. He said, “We understand that this is the rule in New York and we’ll follow the rules. But it will be a zero issue. He’s a freak. You could put a blindfold on him, and he’ll run his race.”

Dr. Ted Hill, the Jockey Club steward at Belmont Park, said that the nasal strip is claimed to be performance enhancing and therefore the need to regulate it. He added that no owner or trainer has ever pushed for the use of the nasal strip.

Dr. James R. Chiapetta, who represents the nasal strip manufacturing company countered that the strips make no more difference in the outcome of a race than do the other equipment horses are permitted to use. The strips protect the horses’ lungs so they can stay healthier.

Contenders for the 2012 Belmont Stakes

The online betting sites like Sportingbet SA are yet to post odds for the 2012 Belmont Stakes. However, the provisional list of contenders is out at the Belmont Park web site and punters can start making their calculations. The horses in the running are given below.




Five Sixteen

Guyana Star Dweej

I’ll Have Another



Street Life

Union Rags

Unstoppable U

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2012 Belmont Stakes

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