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Saratoga’s Crowning Moment

Summer at the Spa — a ritual nearly 200 years strong — started early in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., with the third leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes, being held on Saturday for the first time at Saratoga Race Course, a revered relic where the elite and otherwise mingle, but the horses rule.

Broadway, the city’s central thoroughfare, bustled. Lines for picnic tables at the track formed before dawn. A new color — Belmont green — blended with the track’s signature red-and-white trimmings. Owners, trainers, horseplayers and the cooler-toting faithful all hailed the break from tradition for the race’s 156th running.

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