Belmont Stakes set for June 20, without spectators

This year’s Belmont Stakes, which is usually the last leg of the famed Triple Crown of horse racing, has officially been set for June 20th - just two weeks later than originally scheduled.

This announcement comes after both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness were pushed back by months.

Because of the delays, this will mark the first time that the Belmont will be the opening leg of the Triple Crown.

The Belmont Stakes - set in Elmont, NY - is typically the longest race of the series, but this year it has been shortened from 1 ½ miles to a more manageable 1 ⅛ miles.

That decision was made to compensate for the lack of endurance of the 3-year-old thoroughbreds who usually have two races prior to tune up.

New York Racing Association President Dave O’Rourke said in a statement, “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.”

But the fans will have to cheer from afar, as spectators this year will not be allowed at the event.

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