The Travers Stakes is the oldest major stakes races in the United States. It has been held since 1864 and was named after William Travers, the former president of the old Saratoga Racing Association. Incidentally, Travers’ horse Kentucky won the inaugural race.

Triple Crown winner Whirlaway is the only horse to win the Travers Stakes after winning the Triple Crown, doing so in 1941. In 1982, Canadian horse Runaway Groom was the first horse to defeat Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes winners in a single race.

Other famous horses who won the Travers Stakes were Bernardini, Medaglia d’Oro, Holy Bull, Easy Goer, Forty Niner, Alydar, Arts and Letters, Damascus, Sword Dancer, Native Dancer, and Man o’ War. This year, an elite group of horses is looking to join those names as winners of this prestigious horse race also known as the Midsummer Derby. The 2019 Travers Stakes will be held on August 24, 2019, at the Saratoga Race Course.

Here are the horseracing betting odds to win the 2019 Travers Stakes. Odds were taken from Bovada as of 8/6/19:

Horse Odds
Maximum Security +300
Game Winner +350
Code of Honor +400
Tacitus +400
Omaha Beach +650
War of Will +800
Tax +900
Highest Honors +1000
Endorsed +1400
Improbable +1400
Owendale +1600
Comical Ghost +2000
Global Campaign +2000
Looking at Bikinis +2000
Roadster +2500
Bourbon War +3300
Everfast +3300
Joevia +3300
Spinoff +3300
Plus Que Parfait +4000
Vekoma +4000

“Trophy" Who are the Favorites?

Maximum Security is the 3-year old bay colt owned by the Gary and Mary West Stables Inc and trained by Jason Servis. This horse was the disqualified winner of the 2019 Kentucky Derby. Maximum Security has won five out of his seven races this year and is coming off a win at the Haskell Invitational- G1 last July 20, 2019. He is also the 2019 Florida Derby winner.

Game Winner is another Gary and Mary West Stables Inc. horse and this 3-year old bay colt is trained by Bob Baffert. He was the champion two-year-old colt of 2018 after going undefeated in four starts, with wins in the Del Mar Futurity, American Pharaoh Stakes and the Breeders Cup Juvenile. Most recently, he won the Los Alamitos Derby last July and finished 5th in the 2019 Kentucky Derby. Game winner also finished second in the Rebel Stakes and the Santa Anita Derby earlier this year.

Code of Honor is a three-year-old chestnut colt who is trained by Claude McGaughey III and owned by W.S. Farish. This horse finished second in the 2019 Kentucky Derby after the disqualification of Maximum Security and was also third at the 2019 Florida Derby. He is fresh off a July 6, 2019 win at the G3 Dwyer Stakes.

Tacitus is a three-year-old gray colt owned by Juddmonte Farms Inc and trained by William I. Mott. Tacitus is the 2019 Tampa Bay Derby G-2 winner and 2019 Wood Memorial G-2 winner. He finished 3rd in the 2019 Kentucky Derby and second in the 2019 Belmont Stakes and is coming off a win at the G-1 Jim Dandy Stakes last July 27, 2019.

Omaha Beach is a three-year-old bay colt owned by Rick Porter of Fox Hill Farms and trained by Richard Mandella. After winning the 2019 Rebel Stakes and 2019 Arkansas Derby, he was the morning line horseracing betting favorite to win the 2019 Kentucky Derby. He missed the race after he was diagnosed with epiglottis.

War of Will is a three-year-old colt owned by Gary Barber and trained by Mark E. Casse. This horse won the 2019 Preakness Stakes after a 7th place finishes at the 2019 Kentucky Derby. He was also last year’s Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf winner and most recently, finished 5th in the Jim Dandy Stakes last July 27, 2019.

Tax is the winner of the Jim Dandy Stakes G-2 last July 27th. This 3-year old dark brown gelding Corms Racing Stable, R.A. Hill Stable and trained by Danny Gargan. Tax finished second in the 2019 Wood Memorial, 14th in the 2019 Kentucky Derby and 4th in the 2019 Belmont Stakes.

Highest Honors is a three-year-old gray colt owned by W.S. Farish and trained by Chad C. Brown. He won the Curlin Stakes last July 26, 2019. Endorsed is a three-year-old colt owned by Godolphin LLC and trained by Kiaran McLaughlin. He finished second to Highest Honors in the Curlin Stakes.

“Trophy" Who Wins?

A healthy Omaha Beach should be a good bet to win the Travers Stakes. The morning-line favorite of the 2019 Kentucky Derby didn’t run the race due to the epiglottis. Trainer Richard Mandella is eyeing him to return at this race and if he does, he will surely be an interesting pick to make.

Tacitus is coming off a win at the Jim Dandy Stakes last month and was solid in both the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes. His current form suggests that he may be a solid contender to win the race.

I’m picking Omaha Beach to win the Travers Stakes, that is if he runs in the race at all. If not, Tacitus has excellent betting value and is also in top form right now. Prediction: Omaha Beach

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