A nice expansion of Belmont Stakes coverage by NBC Sports on NBC and Versus.
On Friday there will be live coverage from Belmont featuring the Grade 3 Poker Handicap on the Grade 2 Brooklyn Handicap on Versus from 5-6 pm.
On Saturday live coverage starts on Versus at 3 pm featuring the Grade 1 Just a Game, the Grade 2 True North Handicap, and the Grade 2 Woody Stephens.
At 5 pm NBC takes over with the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Manhattan Handicap being shown before the Belmont Stakes. As was done for the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness, Versus will have a 30 minute post race recap after NBC signs off.
How many times do you think we will hear from NBC that this is only the 2nd time in the last 15 years that the Derby and Preakness winner have faced off at Belmont? I give the over/under for the Versus/NBC Saturday coverage at 14 times. I don't mind the stat, but a half dozen times it was impossible as a horse was going for the triple crown.
With Animal Kingdom and Shackleford both showing up I expect a nice turnout at Belmont Park. On non triple crown years, the weather is always a big factor in attendance and the early forecast looks good with temps in the 70's under Partly sunny skies.