​Belmont Horse Racing Picks for Saturday 5/8/21

It's a great time to dive into horse racing, and FanDuel Racing gives you the chance to do just that.

Starting at 1:00 p.m. Eastern, we have 11 races at Belmont Park. Using numberFire’s projections as a guide, here are some of the best bets.

As always, keep an eye out for scratches and changes, and check the weather and track conditions

(I will reference Equibase's Speed Figure in selected races, which tells you how fast a horse has been running in each of its races -- adjusted for track, distances, and conditions.)

Civil Union, Race 6

FanDuel Racing Odds: 2/1

Race 6 is the first of five graded stakes and the start of the Pick 6. The $150K Grade III Vagrancy Handicap is for older fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles in the inner turf. All six runners seem to have a chance, even the longshot Thankful (30/1) is making just her second start on the turf.

The top pick according to numberFire's data is the favorite, Harveys Lil Goil (8/5), with Civil Union (2/1) and Nay Lady Nay (4/1) projected to hit the board.

Civil Union is 3-for-3 at Belmont and has a win and a second-place finish at the distance, according to Horse Racing Radar (HRR). Guaranteed Tip Sheet makes Civil Union a top pick followed by Lemista (5/2), who has won four of her last five starts in Ireland.

Jockey tactics are in play, and leading rider Joel Rosario rides Civil Union having won a meet-best 43% of his starts (9-for-21).

Harvey's Lil Goil is a neck away from winning four of her last five starts, according to HRR. She makes her 2021 debut after finishing third in the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf last November in front of Civil Union. Include Harvey's Lil Goil in vertical wagers.

Nova Rags and Promise Keeper, Race 9

FanDuel Racing Odds: 5/2 and 7/2

Race 9 is the $200K Grade III Peter Pan Stakes for 3-year-olds racing 1 1/8 miles. The top picks according to numberFire's algorithm are Nova Rags (5/2) and Overtook (8/1).

Note that Risk Taking (7/5) has been scratched and will run in next Saturday's Preakness Stakes.

Nova Rags drops down a bit following a fourth place finish in the Florida Derby. He has a pair of recent bullet workouts in her training sessions.

Overtook should be included in exacta and trifecta wagering, along with Promise Keeper (7/2), who are both running for EPO trainer Todd Pletcher.

Promise Keeper makes his second graded stakes start but missed badly finishing 12th in the Tampa Bay Derby when she bled in the race. Draw a line through that and look at her two route wins.

Overtook has a sharp work tab from his February runner-up finish behind Risk Taking in the Grade III Withers Stakes.

Sovereign and Field Pass, Race 10

FanDuel Racing Odds: 8/5 and 6/1

Race 10 is the featured $700K Grade I Man o' War Stakes for older horses running 1 3/8 miles on the inner turf. The numberFire data projects the favorite Sovereign (8/5) to win with leading jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. riding for EPO trainer Chad Brown.

Sovereign has shown speed in his races in Europe and now makes his U.S. debut in a race that is clearly devoid of speed. Sovereign is by the one of the most popular sires in the world in Galileo, whose runners can already run all day.

Top jockey and strong stretch rider Joel Rosario rides Gufo (2/1) from the outside No. 8 post. He's a neck and a head away from winning 7-of-8 starts. Todd Pletcher-trained Shamrocket (15/1) has finished in-the-money in 12-of-13 career starts, according to Horse Racing Radar. That includes three straight runner-up finishes this year.

Field Pass (6/1) has run against strong runners in five straight graded stakes races, and he can find the extra gear late for EPO trainer Mike Maker. Field Pass finished fourth recently in the Makers Mark Mile at longer odds. Luis Saez rides, as Rosario elects to ride Gufo.