O-Cobra Farm, Inc., R R Partners & Head of Plains Partners LLC. B- Dr. William B. Wilmot & Dr. Joan M. Taylor (NY). T-Chad C. Brown. Sales History: $22,000 RNA Ylg ’15 FTNAUG; $22,000 RNA Ylg ’15 FTKOCT. Lifetime Record: MSW, 6-4-0-0, $209,040.
Last Start: 1st, Federico Tesio S., LRL, Apr. 22.
Accomplishments: 1st, Private Terms S., LRL, Mar. 18
Long-shot New York-bred Twisted Tom rides a three-race winning streak into the Belmont S., with his two most recent victories coming in a pair of open-company stakes at Laurel. He has a relentless, plugging-along way of going and has stretched out successfully in sixteenth-of-a-mile increments on dirt since his connections deviated from an initial turf strategy for his first three career tries (one of which was moved off the grass). The 1 1/2 mile distance of the Belmont S. might not be too much of a reach pedigree-wise, but the sharp step up in class is likely to provide a bracing challenge for Twisted Tom considering he has been competing in fields that have been on the short side (five, seven, and seven so far in 2017) and have not included any of the division’s heavy hitters. A switch to a New York-based jockey (Javier Castellano) will provide a measure of confidence in negotiating the vast expanse of Belmont Park’s main track under two-turn circumstances, but it’s difficult envisioning “Tom” for anything other than a minor award against this fairly seasoned crew, even if he produces a career-best effort.