He was the 9/5 favorite on the morning line, and 1.45/1 at the post, but Exaggerator was a non-factor on Saturday, finishing well behind in 11th. Creator won, beating Destin by a nose. The Steve Asmussen-trained colt was ridden by Irad Ortiz, Jr., and was 10/1 on the morning line and 16.4/1 at the post. It's the first win at the Belmont for Ortiz and for Asmussen, who also trained a pair of Preakness champions in Curlin (2007) and Rachel Alexandra (2009).

Not much went right for Exaggerator going into the Belmont. His best results have been on sloppy tracks, including his victory at the Preakness. There were some possible showers in Saturday's forecast for Belmont Park, but the rain didn't show up, and the track at Belmont Park was graded fast. Jockey Kent Desormeaux also recently spent eight days at a rehab center in Utah before arriving in New York.

Creating Excellence

Regardless, it was a brilliant run by Creator, who was available at 25/1 on the futures market just before Wednesday's post position draw – where the gray Kentucky-bred colt was put on the far outside at No. 13. This is the first time any horse has won the Belmont Stakes from the 12-hole or farther out. Two more grays followed, with Destin just barely losing out at the wire, and Japanese-owned Lani (20/1 ML, 12.2/1 post) 1 1/2 lengths behind in third.

It was also a brilliant move by WinStar Farm to enter long shot Gettysburg (30/1 ML, 55/1 post) into the Belmont. In a race without much speed, Gettysburg set the pace early – not a terribly fast pace, but enough to give WinStar teammate Creator something to chase. Both horses are trained by Asmussen. The final piece of the puzzle was the change in jockey; Ricardo Santana, Jr. was aboard Creator when he finished 13th at the Kentucky Derby. Ortiz is a Belmont Park regular, and he opened Saturday's card by piloting Economic Model to victory at the 2016 Easy Goer Stakes.

Governor Malibu came in fourth at the Belmont to round out the superfecta, which paid out at a healthy $27,935. Bettors who nailed the trifecta received $2,751, and the exacta of Creator and Destin was good for $269. The remaining horses in order of finish were Stradivari (No. 5), Brody's Cause (No. 6), Cherry Wine (No. 7), Gettysburg (No. 8), Suddenbreakingnews (No. 9), Trojan Nation (No. 10), Exaggerator (no. 11), Seeking the Soul (No. 12), and Forever d'Oro (No. 13).