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2012 Belmont Stakes News And Notes: Guyana Star Dweej, I'll Have Another And More


The 2012 Belmont Stakes, where I'll Have Another will bid to become horse racing's first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978, is drawing closer. Here are your Belmont Stakes news and notes for this Tuesday.

Beyer: Triple Crown drought result of change in breeding priorities | Daily Racing Form
As I’ll Have Another tries to become racing’s first Triple Crown winner in 34 years, plenty of casual fans will be asking: Why is this feat so difficult? Why is it more difficult than it was in the 1970s, when three different horses in a span of six years swept the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes?

Some of the explanations are relatively obvious. Three demanding races in a five-week period constitute a tough grind for contemporary horses, who are generally less robust than their forebears. Moreover, the Triple Crown races draw bigger fields than in the past, because so many owners and trainers are obsessed by winning these events. When Citation swept the series in 1948, he beat 15 opponents in the three races combined. I’ll Have Another had to defeat 19 in the Derby alone.

While these factors are undeniably significant, there is another theory to explain the difficulty of winning the contemporary Triple Crown: The obstacle is not the Triple Crown itself. The real stumbling block is the 1 1/2-mile distance of the Belmont Stakes.

Guyana Star Dweej Works; On to Belmont |
After watching Guyana Star Dweej put in a half-mile work on Belmont Park’s main track June 4, owner-trainer Doodnauth Shivmangal confirmed the colt will make his next start in the June 9 Belmont Stakes (gr. I).

“Guyana Star is in the Belmont,” Shivmangal said. “I was very pleased with him yesterday morning, but I am more pleased today. We were able to beat the weather, and he did what he needed to do. I think Guyana Star is back on the straight path again.”

The Daily Racing Form was not nearly as impressed with Guyana Star's work, however. It said:

Guyana Star Dweej became the final prospective Belmont Stakes starter to work prior to the race when breezing an uninspiring half-mile in 49.30 seconds with new rider Kent Desormeaux aboard immediately after the renovation break Monday at Belmont Park.

Guyana Star Dweej worked in company with Shkspeare Shaliyah, his stablemate from the barn of trainer Doodnauth Shivmangal. The team broke off at the half-mile pole, with Guyana Star Dweej nearest the rail, and sizzled through an opening quarter in 22.42. But both horses tired badly once settling into the stretch, completing their final two furlongs in a dismal 26.88, with Shkspeare Shaliyah appearing the stronger of the pair at the end. They galloped out five furlongs in 1:02.36.

Although Guyana Star Dweej’s work was obviously better than his aborted try here five days earlier, it hardly suggests that this is a horse is sitting on the type of effort needed to compete with the likes of I’ll Have Another or most of the others eyeing Saturday’s Belmont.

I'll Have Another to Stakes Barn on June 5 |
Trainer Doug O’Neill said I'll Have Another, who is seeking to win the elusive Triple Crown in the June 9 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), will relocate Tuesday, June 5, to the barn set aside for Belmont contenders.

The Empire State Building Will Shine Purple, White, And Green In Honor Of The 2012 Belmont Stakes