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Travers Stakes 2023 Odds, Best Bets & Predictions

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com

Adam Thompson  | 4 mins

Travers Stakes 2023 Odds, Best Bets & Predictions

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The winners of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes will race against each other at the 2023 Travers Stakes on Saturday. None of them are favored to win it. 

The Travers Stakes is one of the top horse racing betting races, the “Midsummer Derby” is as big for those in the horse racing world as the Triple Crown events. 

Bookies.com handicapper Adam Thompson has crushed all three Triple Crown races. Now he has set his sights on the 2023 Travers Stakes, the “fourth major” of horse racing. The nine-horse field goes to post at 7:02 p.m. ET. 

Thompson just missed on a big payday for the Derby but got paid on six of the seven other races that Saturday and nailed a massive 42/1 Exacta Box on Friday to finish up huge on the weekend. Then came the Preakness, in which he hit on both the Exacta and Trifecta for another massive weekend finish. He cashed on eight of the 13 races at the Belmont Stakes Saturday, too. 

2023 Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course

Saturday, Aug. 26 | 6:11 p.m. ET | FOX

There are just seven horses in the Travers Stakes, but it’s a blue-chip crew that includes Kentucky Derby winner Mage, Preakness Stakes winner National Treasure, and Belmont Stakes winner Arcangelo. 

But it’s Forte who is favored on sports betting apps. The Todd Pletcher-trained horse was favored to win the Kentucky Derby before a foot injury took him out in a shocking race day scratch. He didn’t race in the Preakness and took second at the Belmont after a poor start. 

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FORTE (#1, 7-5 morning line odds) is still the pick to win this race. In nine career races, the horse has seven victories, including his last race on this track (albeit in muddy conditions). In many of his races, he has stuck anonymously in the pack, but his final stretch speed is unique. It’s tough to go against such a horse. 

We’re doing an Exacta Box with Forte and MAGE (#4, 4-1), who nearly got Forte at the Haskell Stakes in July. Mage has only five stakes races under his belt, but his strength of schedule is second to none. He finished third or better all Grade 1 stakes races, including his win at the Kentucky Derby. 

TAPIT TRICE (#3, 12-1) will be our longshot to add to the tickets. Another Pletcher horse, he won four straight races before challenging the big boys in the Kentucky Derby (7th), Belmont Stakes (3rd) and Haskell Stakes (5th). Still, the speed numbers indicate he could sneak into a top-three finish. With perhaps the highest horse racing odds come post time, we’ll toss him in and hope for a mini-miracle. 

For a few bucks more, we’ll also add DISARM (#6, 8-1), a potential spoiler with solid speed marks who has finished fourth or better in all eight career events, including the Kentucky Derby. 

We need to fade someone, and that someone will be ARCANGELO (#2, 5-2), second behind Forte on the morning line odds. Arcangelo won the Belmont, but that June 10 race was the last time he competed, and he’s only had two stakes races in his career (granted, he won them both). 

While most of the other contenders have battled each other in various big-time races, Arcangelo has never competed against any of them. Neither has SCOTLAND (#7, 12-1), whose speed numbers aren’t favorable. We’re also not going with NATIONAL TREASURE (#5, 8-1), the Preakness Stakes winner who has finished fourth and sixth in his other two Grade 1 stakes races. 

Here’s how we’re betting on the race and every race at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday. You can lay out your bet at TwinSpires racing book and on their sports betting app.

Travers Stakes Picks

$10 To Win: 1 ($10)

$8 Exacta Box: 1,4 ($16)

$2 Exacta: 1,4 with 1,3,4,6 ($12)

$2 Trifecta: 1 with 3,4,6 with 3,4,6 ($12)

Saratoga Saturday Picks

RACE 1: 8 To Win; Exacta Box 2,7,8

RACE 2: 2 To Win

RACE 3: Exacta Box 3,4

RACE 4: 3 To Win

RACE 5: Exacta Box 8,9,10

RACE 6: 2 To Win

RACE 7: 2 To Win; Exacta Box 2,3

RACE 8: 13 To Win; Exacta 13 with 12,16

RACE 9: Exacta Box 3,5,6

RACE 10: 6 To Win; Exacta Box 2,6,7

RACE 11: 7 To Win; Exacta 7 with 1,3,6

RACE 12: Travers Stakes (see above)

RACE 13: 14 To Win

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About the Author

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com
Adam Thompson
NFL writer and expert Adam Thompson joined Bookies.com in 2019 after a successful run as senior handicapper for SportsLine and CBSSports.com. He's long been established as one of the nation's premier handicappers, specializing in the NFL where he's hit on more than 60% over the past three years. Adam's NBA, PGA and horse racing picks have also produced major winners over the last 12 months. His customized NFL and NBA odds for players and teams have been picked up by hundreds of websites over the past year.