Today on Sky Sports Racing: Forte and National Treasure star in Belmont Stakes on busy Saturday

The long wait to see Forte tackle a Triple Crown race is over as Todd Pletcher’s star lines up in the Grade One Belmont Stakes, live on Sky Sports Racing.

0.02 Belmont – Forte clashes with Preakness star

The rollercoaster season of Todd Pletcher’s superstar Forte could well take another turn on Saturday as the former Kentucky Derby favourite makes a long-awaited return to action in the Grade One Belmont Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (00.02).

Last year’s champion two-year-old in the USA has been the subject of much attention and speculation since being scratched on the morning of the big race at Churchill Downs last month with a bruised foot, meaning he also missed the Preakness at Pimlico.

All that means we have not seen Forte in race conditions since winning the Florida Derby on April 1. He will break from stall six under Irad Ortz Jr.

Pletcher has two of the nine-runner field with Tapit Trice (stall two) expected to mount a serious challenge having been kept fresh for this after coming from the very rear to be seventh in the Kentucky Derby.

John Velazquez, right, atop National Treasure win the Preakness at Pimlico

National Treasure made the most of Forte’s absence to land the Preakness and Bob Baffert’s contender commands plenty of respect from stall four.

Angel Of Empire went off favourite for the Kentucky Derby and was another who came from well back to be third. Arcangelo took the Grade Three Peter Pan Stakes here last month and returns in search of a third win in a row from stall three.

Other superstars to watch at Belmont on Saturday

8.02 – Clairiere & Secret Oath (Gr1 Ogden Phipps Stakes)

8.42 – General Jim & Fort Bragg (Gr1 Woody Stephens Stakes)

9.19 – Caravel & Go Bears Go (Gr1 Jaipur Stakes)

10.04 – Cody’s Wish (Gr1 Hill ‘N’ Dale Metrpolitan)

10.54 – Ottoman Fleet (Gr1 Manhattan Stakes)

4.00 Bangor – Track leaders Hughes & McCain could dominate again

The Boorer Family Handicap Chase (4.00) features four course and distance winners as well as the track’s leading trainer and jockey in combination.

Champion Jockey Brian Hughes rides Donald McCain’s Heartbreak Kid who won impressively here last time and a repeat performance, even with a 5lb penalty, may not stop him.

Midnight Jewel put up a solid performance last time out at Southwell considering it was his first run for 196 days so it would be no surprise to see an improved performance for the Charlie Longsdon team.

The JP McManus-owned Joly Maker was a 25/1 winner at Stratford three starts ago and, even though his two recent efforts have been disappointing, he could feature for the Jonjo O’Neill team.

Joly Maker (yellow and green) clears a fence at Leicester
Joly Maker (yellow and green) clears a fence at Leicester

8.00 Chepstow – Sir Winston & Iconic Knight headline among nine runners

The Reecer Properties Handicap (8.00) at Chepstow looks competitive with several holding claims.

Roger Varian’s Sir Winston gave Raul Da Silva his first win for three years when scoring at Brighton last time out and will top the weights off this 5lb higher mark, with the Brazilian back on board.

John O’Shea’s course and distance winner Macs Dilemma finished a narrow second here over six furlongs last time and steps up to seven furlongs under Mollie Phillips. Up 1lb, the form of his last effort looks solid, and he could be involved again.

Tony Carroll sends Iconic Knight here for his seasonal debut having not seen the track for 285 days. A four-time winner at the track, he could go well if fitness is not an issue.

8.45 Lingfield – Wide-open finale worth waiting for

A quality field of eight go to post for the At The Races App Expert Tips Fillies’ Handicap (8.45).

Recent Windsor winner Valkyrian has flourished since joining the Jamie Osborne yard and has his first go at 10 furlongs, with the trainer’s daughter Saffie Osborne taking the ride.

Hollie Doyle’s mount Amazing ran with credit on his first handicap start at Nottingham 28 days ago and steps up in distance off this 1lb lower mark.

Zaakara represents the Sir Michael Stoute team and put up a solid performance when finishing third at Chelmsford last time and could improve for that run on this second start of the campaign.

Saturday racecards | Latest Sky Bet odds

Watch the Grade One Belmont Stakes, plus every race from Bangor-On-Dee, Chepstow and Lingfield all live on Sky Sports Racing on Saturday, June 10.

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