The $1 million Belmont Stakes (G1) will be run June 20 at the reduced distance of 1 1/8 miles and without spectators in attendance, the New York Racing Association announced on Tuesday.
“While this will certainly be a unique running of this historic race, we are grateful to be able to hold the Belmont Stakes in 2020,” said NYRA President & CEO Dave O’Rourke. “Thanks to our partners at NBC Sports, fans across the country can look forward to a day of exceptional Thoroughbred racing at a time when entertainment and sports are so important to providing a sense of normalcy.”
This year marks the first time the Belmont has ever been the opening leg of the Triple Crown. The Kentucky Derby (G1) was rescheduled to Sept. 5, while the Preakness (G1) will close the series on Oct. 3.
Run at 1 1/2 miles since 1926, the Belmont has been run twice previously at 1 1/8 miles, at Morris Park in 1893-94. The 1894 edition was won by Hall of Famer Henry of Navarre.
The Belmont Stakes will offer Kentucky Derby qualifying points of 150-60-30-15 to the top four finishers.