Todd Pletcher’s Horses in Belmont Stakes 2019

Getty LOUISVILLE, KY - MAY 01: Todd Pletcher talks with the media during the morning training for the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 1, 2018 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Todd Pletcher will trot out two horses at the 2019 Belmont Stakes: Intrepid Heart and Spinoff. He has trained Belmont champions in 2007, 2013 and 2017, but this time around, his horses are underdogs. Intrepid Heart is a 10-to-1 outsider, while Spinoff is 15-to-1 per CBS Sports.

Pletcher, who will turn 52 on June 26, has come incredibly close to being a 5-time champion at this final leg of the Triple Crown. In 2014, Pletcher’s Commissioner, a 28-1 outsider, lost a big lead to Tonalist. Two years later, his Destin fell short by a nose to Creator.

Even with the close losses, the typically unflappable Texan still waxes poetic about the Belmont.

“The Belmont is a race we really cherish,” Pletcher said Tuesday to Newsday. “It’s home for us, and I think one of the advantages is most of our horses have trained at Belmont for five weeks after the Derby. It helps, and it’s a race we really enjoy. We’ve been pretty fortunate to have had horses that have run well, and we’ve taken a couple of nasty beats, too.”

Both of his participants this year have disappointed recently. Intrepid Heart finished third at the Peter Pan Stakes on May 11 as a favorite, while Spinoff never threatened at Churchill Down, placing 18th. Pletcher appears more confident in the latter’s chances.

“Two days before the Derby, we had a sloppy track at Churchill, and it was, ‘I don’t think he likes this,’ ” Pletcher said. “I’m hoping that was the case, because he had trained as consistently as some of the horses we’ve run in the Belmont over the years that have performed well. I’m hoping he catches a fast track and gets to prove how good he is, or not.”

He told Fox 5 New York that he has prepped Spinoff on the track for the last five weeks, which he estimates will bode well.

“I think you can make that argument from the standpoint of training on a mile and a half track,” Pletcher said. “Getting accustomed to that can be helpful.”

Todd Pletcher History at Triple Crown Events

Belmont Stakes 2017 | Tapwrit wins 149th Belmont Stakes | NBC SportsGoing off at 5-1 odds, Tapwrit chased down Irish War Cry to win the 149th Belmont Stakes for trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey Jose Ortiz. » Subscribe to NBC Sports: https://www.youtube.com/nbcsports » Watch Live Sports on NBCSports.com: http://www.nbcsports.com/live » Get more horse racing news on NBC Sports: https://www.nbcsports.com/horse-racing NBC Sports Group serves sports fans 24/7 with premier live events, insightful studio shows, and compelling original programming. NBC Sports is an established leader in the sports media landscape with an unparalleled collection of sports properties that include the Olympics, NFL, Premier League, NHL, NASCAR, PGA TOUR, the Kentucky Derby, Tour de France, French Open, IndyCar and many more. Subscribe to our channel for the latest sporting news and highlights! The Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes are far more than just two-minute horse races… They are 300 years of history, tradition and athleticism, all rolled into single sporting events. Celebrating the pursuit of American excellence, NBC Sports is the exclusive home to all three races of the Triple Crown. Beyond the Triple Crown, NBC Sports broadcasts some of the most important and prestigious events in all of horse racing. With exclusive media rights to the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series and the Breeders’ Cup Classic, viewers can watch the best contenders compete across the country between June and November. Visit NBC Sports: https://www.nbcsports.com Find NBC Sports on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NBCSports Follow NBC Sports on Twitter: https://twitter.com/nbcsports Follow NBC Sports on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nbcsports/ Tapwrit wins 149th Belmont Stakes | NBC Sports https://www.youtube.com/nbcsports2017-06-10T22:53:45.000Z

Pletcher’s previous three Belmont winners were Tapwrit (2017), Palace Malice (2013) and Rags to Riches (2007). He also is no stranger to success at Churchill Downs with a pair of Kentucky Derby wins: Always Dreaming (2017) and Super Saver (2010).

He has raked in over $375 million in career earnings, as well as $8 million this season alone.

The jockey that has brought him the most success is John Velazquez, who guided Always Dreaming and Rags to Riches to titles. He will be on Intrepid Heart this late afternoon in New York. Spinoff’s rider is Javier Castellano.

Velazquez, a native of Puerto Rico, will break the record for most starts in a Belmont Stakes at 23. Per Blood Horse:

“(Breaking the record) will absolutely be a point of pride for me, especially since New York is my home,” said Velazquez, the all-time top-money-winning jockey in North America with more than $400 million in purse earnings. Currently, Velazquez is tied at 22 rides with Hall of Famer Eddie Arcaro.


Todd Pletcher’s Belmont Stakes Horses 2019

HORSE JOCKEY OWNER
No. 6 Spinoff Javier Castellano Wertheimer and Frere
No. 8 Intrepid Heart John Velazquez Low, Lawana L. and Robert E.