Since its triumphant beginnings in 1867 at Jerome Park, Belmont continues to be the most seasoned and formidable thoroughbred horserace track in the Triple Crown Series. Now set at Elmont, New York’s 430-acre Belmont Park, the Belmont Stakes includes a main course of a mile and a half and twelve furlongs.

Many outstanding traditions surround the Belmont Stakes, including the Belmont Stakes Trophy, its distinctive floral adornments, its slogan and its theme song.

The White Carnations
The blanket of 300 to 400 white carnations imported from Colombia, bonded to a verdant velveteen material has become emblematic of the Belmont Stakes, and is the reason why people also refer to the event as the “Run for the Carnations”. These white carnations are worn by the Belmont Stakes Winners and take approximately 10 hours to put together.

“Test of the Champion”
Because it is the last and most difficult leg of the Triple Crown series, the Belmont Stakes has been dubbed as the “Test of the Champion”. The outcome of this event is mostly unpredictable, with horses rushing into the finish line after lagging behind, and determines the winner amongst all the other strong contenders.

The Belmont Stakes Trophy
This much sought after silver trophy bears the design of a bowl bolstered by Eclipse, Herod, and Matchem, the trio representing the three bedrocks of thoroughbred horses. It stands 18 inches tall and 15 inches wide, supported by a base that is around 14 inches. At the crown of the trophy is the figure of the 1869 Belmont Stakes champion, Fenian.

Official Song
Its traditional song used to be the popular 1890s “Sidewalks of New York”, written by James. W. Black and Charles B. Lawler. It had the pacing of an easy and leisurely waltz.

This changed in 1997, when the track officials decided to use Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” in 1997 as the Belmont Stakes’ official song to appeal to a much larger audience and lure in a younger demographic.

The Belmont Breeze
This tasty cocktail was invented by Head Bartender Dale DeGroff of Manhattan’s Rainbow Room/ Windows on the World. It has been the trademark beverage of the Belmont Stakes since 1998, and costs around $10++ per serving. The whiskey punch is composed of a delightful medley of lemon juice, cream sherry, orange juice, soda, cranberry juice, fresh strawberries, and so on.

Gallery of Belmont Stakes Victors
The walls of the Belmont Clubhouse’s 2nd floor are covered with photographs of the Belmont Stakes winners, dating as far back as 1912. It continues to be a source of pride, commemorating the Belmont Stakes victors of yesteryears.

Among the many parties that come with the Belmont Stakes are the Belmont Charity Ball and the Belmont Festival. The Belmont Charity Ball is the height of the pre-Belmont Stakes festivities, and normally takes place at the Meadowbrook Country Club. The Belmont Festival, on the other hand, features a bevy of bands and other forms of family entertainment, and is set to take place at Garden City.