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Haskell Invitational Betting Guide

Your guide to the Haskell Invitational Stakes at Monmouth Park.

The Haskell Invitational Stakes is one of the premier races on the horse racing calendar.

Occurring between the end of the Triple Crown season and the Breeders’ Cup, it is open to 3-year-old thoroughbreds. It is run over a distance of 1.125 of a mile at Monmouth Park, New Jersey.

Being for 3-year olds-only, this race attracts many of the leading lights from the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes.

In 2020, the 52nd renewal of the Haskell Invitational Stakes will be Saturday, July 18, a week later from its traditional Sunday slot. This decision was made to ensure that national television coverage of the race on NBC could be assured in coming years.

This page gives you a complete rundown of the Invitational that is organized in the following sections:

  • How to bet on Haskell: A review of all of the betting options you’ll have for the race.
  • About the Haskell Invitational Stakes: A detailed look at the colorful history of the race.
  • Monmouth Park: We share information regarding the host racetrack.
  • Racing in New Jersey: Other notable races in New Jersey.

How to qualify for the Haskell Invitational Stakes

Being an Invitational race, there are no formal qualification criteria.

The race organizers aim to put together the strongest field possible. The timing of the race is perfect, as it sits nicely between the end of the Triple Crown series and the start of the Breeders’ Cup.

This being the case, the race has historically attracted the best 3-year-old horses from across the country.

To add an extra incentive for the best horses, trainers and owners to enter the race, there are two bonuses:

  • First, the race will add $250,000 to the prize fund for each Triple Crown race winner involved. When American Pharoah entered in 2015, the Triple Crown winner added $750,000 ($250,000 for each of the three component races), pushing the prize up to $1,750,000.
  • Second, any owner or trainer with a Triple Crown race winning horse will receive a $25,000 bonus, while Grade 1 winning connections will receive a $10,000 bonus.

Non-winners of a Triple Crown race will receive a 2-pound allowance in the Haskell, while non-winners of a Grade I race will receive a 4-pound allowance.

This race is part of the “win and you’re in” qualification for the Breeders’ Cup. The winner of the Haskell Invitational Stakes is invited to take part in the Breeders’ Cup Classic race, the highlight event of that series.

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Other betting options for the Haskell Invitational Stakes

There is nothing like being part of the packed crowd at Monmouth Park for the Haskell Invitational Stakes, which is the easiest betting option.

Enjoy the live action and place a wager at the track, then watch the action unfold as you aim to secure the best view of the finish line.

If you live too far away from Monmouth Park to attend, you could head to a local racetrack for simulcast betting. Watch the action on the screen in the company of other racing fans and hope you’ve made the right choice.

The other option for betting on the Haskell Invitational Stakes is off-track betting (OTB) sites that are available in several states.

Bet types for Haskell Invitational

You’ll find a range of betting options available for the race. Here’s a rundown of the most popular:

  • Win: The most popular and straightforward wager. Place your bet and hope your chosen horse crosses the finish line first.
  • Place: With a place bet, your chosen selection must finish first or second.
  • Show: Having placed a show bet, the selection must finish anywhere within the first three.
  • Exacta: Correctly predict the first two in the race. This wager is a tougher task, but the rewards are much greater.
  • Trifecta: Here, you’ll have to predict the 1-2-3 in the correct order. Get this right and the payouts can go through the roof, especially if an unexpected selection gets in the mix.
  • Superfecta:  The toughest wager of all, as you’ll need to predict the 1-2-3-4. Get this right and you could be looking at a mega win.

When placing an exacta (2x), trifecta (6x) or superfecta (24x), you can “box” the wagers. Here your selections can finish in any order. The numbers in the brackets signify how many times you’ll need to multiply your stakes to place these wagers.

Here are the payouts in 2018. Note that these payouts were relatively low, as Good Magic entered the race as strong favorite, while the first four in the race were also the first four in the betting. In 2017, the superfecta payout was a much more enticing $941.10.

1st. Good Magic$3.00$2.40$2.10
2nd. Bravazo$4.00$2.60
3rd. Lone Sailor$2.60

Top 3 sites to bet on the Haskell Invitational

If you’re looking for the right website for placing a bet on the Haskell Invitational Stakes, check out the following three industry leaders.

These sites are regulated, legal and cover most states:

#1 TVG: Up to $200 Risk-Free Bet!

TVG Kentucky DerbyA popular sports betting site with a horse racing focus, especially on the live streaming side. Watch the Haskell Invitational live on TVG and take advantage of the generous sign-up offer. New bettors receive  get a single risk free wager up to $200 using the promo code LSRTVG. Be sure to take advantage of TVG’s free past performance data offer to find the best value picks.

Bet now and get up to a $200 on your first bet with TVG! 

  • BetAmerica: BetAmerica offers the best horse racing bonuses and sports contest coverage. The racing section features more than 400 tracks (including Monmouth Park). New customers can take advantage of a $100 matched deposit bonus. The VIP rewards scheme keeps players’ bankroll topped up with exclusive promotions.
  • TwinSpires:  As a site named after the venue of the Kentucky Derby, you know they take racing seriously. You can enjoy live streaming of the race at TwinSpires. There are also form guides and analysis, provided in conjunction with Brisnet. A straightforward bonus scheme sees every new customer collect $100 in bonuses that are paid in $20 instalments every time the customer wagers $100.

About Monmouth Park Racetrack

Monmouth Park New JerseyMonmouth Park is one of the oldest racetracks in the country having first opened its doors in 1870. However, despite good attendance at the track, legislation barred pari-mutuel betting in its home state and New Jersey saw the track close down. The Army later built Fort Monmouth on the site.

More than 50 years later, another law passed allowing for state regulation of horse racing. Amory L. Haskell led the charge for this law change, and this would eventually lead to the new Monmouth Park opening on June 19, 1946.

The racetrack today plays host to both turf and dirt tracks. The turf track on the inside has a circumference of seven furlongs, while the outer dirt track has a circumference of 1 mile.

Biggest races at Monmouth Park and other NJ racetracks

New Jersey plays host to some of the biggest races on the calendar.

In 2007, Monmouth Park was the host of the Breeders’ Cup.

Events included the showcase Breeders’ Cup Classic and Breeders’ Cup turf races. The Breeders’ Cup changes location from year to year, so racing fans in New Jersey will be hoping for a return to Monmouth Park soon.

As well as the Haskell Invitational Stakes, Monmouth Park plays host to several big races throughout the year. The United Nations Stakes is a Grade I event on the turf, with a prize fund of $300,000, a race that first ran in 1953. Grade II events at the track include the Molly Pitcher Stakes and the Monmouth Cup.

In recent years, New Jersey would play host to the Tony Gatto Dream Big Stakes until the closure of Atlantic City racetrack. The Meadowlands Racetrack is the site of some of the best trotting and harness racing in the country.

History of the Haskell Invitational Stakes

Haskell Invitational Race

The first running of the race came in 1968 when the board of directors of Monmouth Park decided to honor its former president Haskell with a race named after him.

The early events took place under handicap conditions. The inaugural winner was Balustrade, ridden by Eric Walsh and trained by Morris H. Dixon.

In 1981, the race became an invitational for 3-year-olds and the same format remains to this day. Over the years, Haskell has attracted some of the best thoroughbreds on the planet.

In 2015, American Pharoah headed to Monmouth Park for the Haskell Invitational Stakes after winning the famed Triple Crown. Such was his considered superiority; he went off at incredible odds of 1:9, he was considered unbeatable. American Pharoah duly went on to win the race with ease, justifying those tiny odds.

Other notable winners include War Emblem, who added the Haskell Invitational to his wins at the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in 2002.

Big Brown also competed in 2008 after winning the Kentucky Derby/Preakness Stakes double. This champion 3-year-old won the Haskell in style with a late surge down the home straight.

Haskell Invitational Winners: 1968-2018

Year HorseJockey DistanceTime
2018Good MagicJose Ortiz​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.0
2017GirvinRobby Albarado​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.4
2016ExaggeratorKent J. Desormeaux​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.7
2015American PharoahVictor Espinoza​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.0
2014BayernMartin Garcia​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.8
2013VerrazanoJohn Velazquez​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.7
2012PaynterRafael Bejarano​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.7
2011CoilMartin Garcia​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.1
2010Lookin at LuckyMartin Garcia​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.4
2009Rachel Alexandra ‡Calvin Borel​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.2
2008Big BrownKent Desormeaux​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.3
2007Any Given SaturdayGarrett Gomez​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.4
2006Bluegrass CatJohn Velazquez​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.9
2005Roman RulerJerry Bailey​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.9
2004Lion HeartJoe Bravo​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.8
2003Peace RulesEdgar Prado​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.2
2002War EmblemVictor Espinoza​1  1 ⁄ 81.49.6
2001Point GivenGary Stevens​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.2
2000Dixie UnionAlex Solis​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.6
1999MenifeePat Day​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.0
1998Coronado's QuestMike E. Smith​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.0
1997Touch GoldChris McCarron​1  1 ⁄ 81.47.60
1996Skip AwayJose A. Santos​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.6
1995Serena's Song ‡Gary Stevens​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.8
1994Holy BullMike E. Smith​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.2
1993Kissin KrisJose A. Santos​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.4
1992TechnologyJerry Bailey​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.6
1991Lost MountainCraig Perret​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.0
1990Restless ConTimothy T. Doocy​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.2
1989King GloriousChris McCarron​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.8
1988Forty NinerLaffit Pincay, Jr.​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.6
1987Bet TwiceCraig Perret​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.0
1986Wise TimesChris DeCarlo​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.6
1985Skip TrialJean-Luc Samyn​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.6
1984Big PistolGarth Patterson​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.8
1983Deputed TestamonyHerb McCauley​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.2
1982Wavering MonarchRandy Romero​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.8
1981Five Star FlightCraig Perret​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.4
1980Thanks To TonyCarlos Lopez, Sr.​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.4
1979CoastalRuben Hernandez​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.8
1978Delta FlagDan Nied​1  1 ⁄ 801:53.2
1977AffiliateMiguel A. Rivera​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.6
1976Majestic LightSandy Hawley​1  1 ⁄ 801:47.0
1975WajimaBraulio Baeza​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.6
1974Holding PatternMike Miceli​1  1 ⁄ 801:49.8
1973Our NativeMiguel A. Rivera​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.6
1972FreetexMichael Hole​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.0
1971West Coast ScoutLarry Adams​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.0
1970Twice WorthyJohn Ruane​1  1 ⁄ 801:48.4
1969Al HattabRay Broussard​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.2
1968BalustradeEric Walsh​1  1 ⁄ 801:50.0

More racing events

Kentucky DerbyPreakness StakesBelmont Stakes
Triple CrownHaskell InvitationalArlington Millions
Travers StakesStars and Stripes StakesDubai World Cup
Saudi Cup

Haskell Invitational FAQ

Here is a rundown of all the facts and figures you’ll need as we head toward the 2020 Haskell Invitational Stakes.

What does the winner of the race receive?

The race has a guaranteed total purse of more than $1 million (that rises by a quarter of a million dollars for any Triple Crown race winning entrant).

The winner of this race will also pick up the famous Haskell Invitation trophy. This trophy features three golden thoroughbreds in a race to the line, the Monmouth Park arches, flag poles and the wooden base complete with an inscription showing the winning connections.

Also, the winner will have a guaranteed entry into the Breeders’ Cup Classic Race.

When was the fastest running of the Haskell?

In 1976, Majestic Light, ridden by Sandy Hawley won the Haskell Invitational in a time of 1:47, the fastest running of the race ever.

This time was met 11 years later by Bet Twice, ridden by Craig Perret. The last horse to dip under the 1:48 mark was Triple Crown-winning American Pharoah in 2015, with a time of 1:47.95.

What was the largest winning margin in the race?

In 2013, Verrazano romped home by an incredible 9.75 lengths. Verrazano came into the home stretch with two rivals just a length behind but pulled away for a win.

Which jockey has won the Haskell Invitational the most times?

Craig Perret was the winning jockey in 1981, 1987 and 1991 giving him three wins in the race. This feat was equaled by Martin Garcia, with wins in 2010, 2011 and 2014.

Which trainer has won the Haskell Invitational the most times?

Bob Baffert is the most successful trainer in the history of the race with an incredible eight wins. All of these wins came between 2001 and 2015 (2001, 2002, 2005, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015).

Don’t be surprised if Baffert adds to his tally in 2020.

Has a filly ever won the Haskell?

Yes, on two occasions.

The first filly to win was Serena’s Song, ridden by Gary Stevens in 1995. The brilliant Rachel Alexandra followed up her win at the Preakness Stakes by winning the Haskell Invitational with Calvin Borel on board in 2009.

Wrapping up: The Haskell Invitational Stakes overview

There is little doubt that the Haskell Invitational Stakes is one of the highlights of the horse racing calendar.

The race attracts a stellar field on an annual basis. Many of the stars of the Triple Crown series will once again come head-to-head at Monmouth Park.

Over the years, legends such as American Pharoah, War Emblem, Big Brown and Rachel Alexandra have graced the racetrack with their presence.

This year’s run promises to be no different. Expect drama, excitement and some of the best horses in the land on July 18.

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