Belmont Park Racecourse

Belmont Park Racecourse is set in 430 acres in Elmont, New York. Originally the brainchild of New York financier August Belmont Jr., the racecourse opened in 1905, but has since become synonymous with the Belmont Stakes, run over a mile and a half in June each and the third leg of the Triple Crown. Officially, Belmont Park stages just two meetings a year, but the Spring/Summer meeting lasts for 56 days between April and July and the so-called Fall Championship lasts for 37 days between September and October.

Course Characteristics

Belmont Park actually consists of three left-handed, oval racecourses, arranged concentrically. The outermost dirt racecourse, known locally as “Big Sandy”, has the distinction of being the longest dirt course in North America, at a mile and a half, or 2,400 metres. The Widener turf course, named after an influential family in American racing history, is a little shorter, at a mile and a quarter, or 2,100 metres, and the inner turf course is shorter still at just over nine furlongs, or 1,900 metres. On all three courses, the home straight is less than a quarter of a mile long.

 

Track Facts

The Belmont Stakes is nicknamed the “Test of the Champion”.

Before 1921, the Belmont Stakes was run clockwise, or right-handed.

Secretariat, who won the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths in 1973, still holds the record for the widest winning margin and the fastest time (2:24) in history.

The largest one-day attendance at Belmont Park was 120,139 on June 5, 2004.

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