Guide To Betting On The 2020 Haskell Invitational

Welcome to the TVG.com Haskell Invitational Stakes, a celebrated stop on the national thoroughbred horse racing scene. The meet is a signature piece in the Monmouth Park summer horse racing season.

The race, which is run by 3-year-old thoroughbreds, takes place in late July or early August of each year. This means it often attracts many of the top horses from the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and the Belmont.

The 2020 Haskell is scheduled for July 18.

This page will provide race history, how to bet on the Haskell online, current odds, and a guide to understanding the Haskell’s position as it relates to the Triple Crown. The pandemic altered the entire nationwide horse-racing schedule in 2020.

Here is a look at horse betting in New Jersey for the 53rd running of the Haskell Invitational Stakes at Monmouth Park.

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2020 Haskell Invitational

  • When: July 18, 2020, time to be determined by TVG and track officials.
  • Where: Monmouth Park, Oceanport, N.J.
  • Purse: $1 million
  • The Field: Nominations closed June 26. The draw is expected to be July 15, but no firm date has been set.
  • Morning Lines: Will be listed by the track sometime during the last week leading up to the event. They will change by race time and the early-line favorite may even become the second choice.
  • Recent History: Favorites have won the majority of the races over the past 15 years amid small fields. That may change with bigger fields and no dominant horses this year.

How to watch/live stream the Haskell in NJ

You can watch the Haskell live at Monmouth Park in July, but if you can’t be there, other options are available. Most racetracks in NJ feature simulcasting. And on occasion, the race will be televised live.

Live streaming is also available via TVG and 4NJBETS.

2020 Haskell odds

Once the field is set, odds will be available at NJ4BETS/TVG. Check back closer to Haskell Day for updated odds and Haskell Invitational picks and best bets.

Post PositionHorse Morning Line Odds
1Dr. Post5-2
2Authentic4-5
3Jesus' Team15-1
4Ancient Warrior20-1
5Fame to Famous30-1
6Lebda20-1
7NY Traffic7-2

How to bet on the Haskell in NJ

There are generally two options for betting on the 2020 Haskell: in person at a track or betting facility or online via 4NJBETS.com, powered by TVG.

If you plan to bet in person, your options include one of the three active racetracks in New Jersey. Monmouth Park, Meadowlands Racetrack and Freehold Raceway all take in-person horse racing bets. There are also numerous off-site horse betting locations in NJ.

Borgata Casino in Atlantic City also features a racebook. The Race & Sports Book is next to the Moneyline Bar & Book near the casino’s poker room. It is open Mondays-Fridays at 11 a.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 9 a.m.

Of course, if a trip to Atlantic City or a racetrack is not in the cards for you, Haskell betting is a click away when you sign up for an account at 4NJBETS.com.

History of the Haskell Invitational

Since its inception in 1968, major champions have won this 1 1/8-mile dirt race, from Triple Crown champions to Eclipse Award winners.

Monmouth Park board of directors launched this race to honor former president and chairman Amory Haskell l (1893–1966) with the Amory L. Haskell Handicap, a race for older horses.

In 1981, the race was made an invitation-only stake for 3-year-olds at ​1 1⁄8 miles. It has been run under allowance weight conditions beginning in 2006.

Two major news developments made the Haskell, and Monmouth Park, the centerpiece of world racing attention in 2019.

Maximum Security, who had suffered the controversial first-ever Kentucky Derby disqualification for alleged interference two months earlier, was the 4-5 Haskell favorite and prevailed. The Derby disqualification was still being challenged, unsuccessfully, in the courts, when Maximum Security made his return race.

Second, scorching temperatures moved the race back into the evening. Monmouth Park was being pressured to postpone or cancel the race for the safety of the horses.

It compromised by pushing the Haskell to a start time of 8:11 p.m. and postponing some of its afternoon races.

Where the Haskell fits in the Triple Crown race

The Haskell, which traditionally runs in late July or early August, is a link between the Triple Crown season and the fall Breeders Cup.

It routinely draws Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes winners, including Triple Crown champion American Pharoah in 2015.

The 2019 Haskell winner, Maximum Security, went on to claim the world’s richest horse race, the $20 million Saudi Cup, in February of 2020.

The Haskell is placed 28 days from the Belmont Stakes. In 2020, the Belmont Stakes was reduced from 1 1/2 miles to a less-grueling 1 1/8 miles due to the pandemic. This means some horses from that field could enter the Haskell.

In 2020, because of COVID-19 restrictions that prompted postponements of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes until the fall, the Haskell will become a Kentucky Derby qualifier.

The winner will receive 100 qualifying points and essentially become eligible for the Kentucky Derby, which will run Sept. 5.

Haskell Invitational contenders

The Haskell is chock full of big names and moments in its history at Monmouth. The first horse to win in 1968 was Balustrade.

Perhaps the most thrilling finish ever occurred in 2017 when 9-1 shot Girvin thundered through the homestretch to nip McCraken “by a nostril” at the wire according to the track call.

The 2016 Haskell featured a rematch between Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist and Preakness Stakes champion Exaggerator, on a sloppy track. Exaggerator had beaten Nyquist in “the slop” at the Preakness and did so again here, taking command in the stretch. Nyquist was fourth. It was a rare instance of a Kentucky Derby winner losing at the Haskell.

This also happened in 1985, when Skip Trial upset Kentucky Derby winner Spend a Buck to win the Haskell.

American Pharoah was a reigning Triple Crown winner and captured this race in 2015, winning easily at a prohibitive price of 1-9. How prohibitive is a 1-9 payout? If you bet $100 on American Pharoah to win, you made a profit of about $10.

Rachel Alexandra, a filly, had “beaten the boys” and Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird in the 2009 Preakness Stakes before winning the Haskell the same year.

Big Brown captured the 2008 Haskell after claiming the Kentucky Derby and Preakness that year.

Menifee won the 1999 Haskell after finishing second in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

Another thrilling Haskell finish occurred between Kentucky Derby winner Alysheba and Belmont Stakes champion Bet Twice in 1987. Bet Twice tied the race record held by Majestic Light (1976). It was the fourth time Alysheba and Bet Twice, the top horses in the country at that point, had raced against each other in four months. It tied their rivalry at 2-2.

In 2017, Betfair.com presented the “All-Time Greats Simulated Race” for the Haskell. American Pharoah prevailed, just ahead of Bet Twice. Majestic Light was third.

Haskell Invitational winners

Big names have lived up to their pedigree in this horse race, especially in recent years. Here is a list of the last 10 Haskell winners:

YearWinPlaceShowWinning Jockey
2019Maximum SecurityMucho GustoSpun To RunLuis Saez
2018Good MagicBravazoLone SailorJose Ortiz
2017GirvinMcCrakenPractical JokeRobby Albarado
2016ExaggeratorAmerican FreedomSunny RidgeKent Desormeaux
2015American PharoahKeen IceUpstartVictor Espinoza
2014BayernAlbanoWildcat RedMartin Garcia
2013VerrazanoPower BrokerMicromanageJohn Valazquez
2012PaynterNoniosStealcaseRafael Bejarano
2011CoilShacklefordRuler On IceMartin Garcia
2010Lookin At LuckyTrappe ShotFirst DudeMartin Garcia

Haskell Invitational records

Winning time

1:47.00 – Bet Twice & Majestic Light

Largest winning margin

9 3/4 lengths – Verrazano (2013)

Most wins by a jockey

Three wins by Craig Perret and Martin Garcia

Most wins by a trainer

Eight by Bob Baffert (2001, 2002, 2005, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015)

Horse betting and the Haskell

These are some of the most common wagers when betting on the Haskell:

  • Win: The horse to finish first
  • Place: The horse to finish first or second
  • Show: The horse to come in third or higher

But more complicated options are also available. These are known as exotic bets in horse racing.

  • Across the Board: Separate bets for win, place and show. If you bet a horse $5 across the board and he finishes second, you lose the win bet, but win the place and show wagers.
  • Exacta: The top two finishers, in exact order. It is highly recommended to make this bet an exacta BOX, meaning you have the top two finishers in either spot. A $2 exacta box costs $4.
  • Trifecta: Picking the top three finishers in exact order. A $1 trifecta box, giving you three horses in any of the three top finishing spots, costs $6
  • Alternate Trifecta Bet: A $1 trifecta key with the winning horse “keyed” over three others in the second and third slots, costs $6. For the same money as a trifecta box, it provides one additional horse, but the keyed horse must win. You can also key the horse in the second spot, with any combination of the other three horses running first and third.
  • Superfecta: Picking the top four finishers of the race in exact order. It pays well, but this is where wagering can become expensive. A $1 superfecta box costs $24. You can make a more economical bet, taking two horses in the first two positions and two others in the third and fourth spots. That costs $8 for a $1 ticket.
  • Alternate Superfecta Bet: A 10-cent superfecta box with four horses costs $2.40. A 10-cent superfecta box with five horses costs $12. A 10-cent superfecta key with one horse placed above five others to run in the second, third and fourth slots costs $6.

Haskell betting trends

Historically, speed is an asset in this race. Most winners stalked from just off the pace, took the lead around the turn and triumphed.

They obtain an early position, “rate” or stay in contact with the leader and make a final bid through the home stretch. Few have rallied from the back of the pack, although it occasionally happens.

Girvin provided one of the most improbable Haskell victories ever in 2017. He was dead last in a seven-horse field, 15 lengths back during the first half of the race. But he rallied past tiring early-speed horses and nudged McCraken in an electrifying finish.

A good tip is to watch earlier races in the day. They will provide an indication of whether the track surface is crisp, which favors speed horses, or whether it’s tiring, favoring closers.

In recent years, the fields have been small because the favorites come out of Triple Crown level races and draw few competitors. The major names usually run well. The money is on the win line rather than the exactas, trifectas, and superfectas, known as “exotics.”

If you wanted to make money on the exacta, for example, you were better with narrowing down to one combination and betting more on it.

That may change in 2020. The favorites have not proven themselves to be dominant in recent races. There is no super horse scaring off competition.

Look for a larger field than in past years and more betting options.

About Monmouth Park

Nicknamed The Shore’s Greatest Stretch, Monmouth Park is one of the oldest racetracks in the US. But its history is one of ups and downs.

It opened for its first race on July 30, 1870. But New Jersey legislation barred pari-mutuel betting and the track closed down. The Army built Fort Monmouth on the site instead.

However, 50 years later, new legislation allowed for state regulation of horse racing. The new Monmouth Park opened on June 19, 1946.

The racetrack features turf and dirt tracks. The turf track has a circumference of seven furlongs, while the outer dirt track is 1 mile.

On June 14, 2018, the Monmouth Park Sports Book by William Hill sportsbook opened and Monmouth Park became the first location to offer sports betting in NJ.

Monmouth Park is one of three New Jersey racetracks. It joins the Meadowlands and Freehold Raceway, predominantly known as harness racing facilities.

Biggest races at Monmouth Park

Besides the Haskell, Monmouth has hosted its share of historic races. The biggest might be from 2007 when Monmouth Park hosted the prestigious Breeders Cup for the first time in its history.

It remains the only time a New Jersey racetrack has hosted the richest event in thoroughbred horse racing.

The 2007 event also marked the first time the event has been held over two days and also the creation of three new races held on Day 1 of the Championships.

Haskell Invitational FAQ

When is the 2020 Haskell?

The 2020 Haskell is scheduled for July 18, 2020, at Monmouth Park. Post time to be finalized by TVG. Extreme heat pushed the race back to the evening in 2020. It normally runs at about 5:45 p.m.

How many horses run in the race?

Recent fields have been in the 6-7 range because the favorites have usually run in the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes, already beating many horses who would be considered for this race.

In 2020, the field likely expands because the Triple Crown races have been pushed to the fall and there are no horses that stand out above the pack.

What kind of race is the Haskell?

A 1 1/8-mile dirt test attracting some of the best horses in the world. It encompasses two turns.

How long does the Haskell Invitational Stakes last?

Less than two minutes. The winning time is usually between 1:47 and 1:49.

Who is the fastest horse to win the Haskell?

Trick question. There are TWO. Bet Twice, in 1987 and Majestic Light, in 1976. They each covered the distance in 1:47.

When are Monmouth Park’s race dates in 2020?

Because of the pandemic, Monmouth’s meet was shortened.

It opened July 3 and finishes Sept. 27. Racing occurs Friday-Sunday throughout July and August. A special card is added on Labor Day.

The track will then drop Fridays and run on Saturdays and Sundays until the meet concludes.

First Race is 12:50 p.m. Saturdays & Sundays and at 5 p.m. Fridays.

When do races begin on Haskell Day?

The track has said the first race will be at noon. Expect a multiple-race card and probably a couple of additional stakes races to beef up the prestige of the card.