Leg two of the Triple Crown of horse racing takes place this Saturday, May 19, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. Post time is 6:48pm. It will be the 143rd running of the “Run for the Black-Eyed Susans” which the winning horse will get draped in after the race. This is the shortest of the three Triple Crown races run at 1 3/16 miles (9.5 furlongs).
Disappointingly only eight horses will be vying for the $1.5 million purse. Three of those, Justify, Good Magic, and Bravazo ran in the Kentucky Derby. Last years’ winner, Cloud Computing, was just the fourth horse in the last 34 years to win the Preakness after not racing in the Kentucky Derby. Will this year be the fifth? I’m betting against it.
With less than half the field of the Kentucky Derby (19 horses) I see this as a two-horse race between Justify and Good Magic. As usual I throw out and do not handicap races that were run on sloppy tracks (2018 Kentucky Derby) when making my selections. That being said I still think it’s a two horse race.
Chad Brown, trainer of Good Magic will try to make it two Preakness wins in a row following last years’ win by Cloud Computing. After finishing 2nd in the Derby to Justify, Brown is hoping that five races in only 13 weeks for Justify maybe too much for the 3-year-old and will be a plus for Good Magic to pull the upset. He’ll also want Quip to press Justify on the lead for most of the race before making his move in the stretch.
Justify is definitely the class of the eight horse field and should go wire to wire, on paper. Although, unknown to a lot of people, Justify had his left hind hoof nicked in the Derby, will it be completely healed by Saturday? Initially it was concerning but the hoof has continued to heal each day. Trainer, Bob Baffert, had the colt reshod (new shoes) on Sunday with extra adhesive support for that hoof. “Any time you run horses on a wet track, it’s very abrasive, especially Derby Day”, he said. “It burns their heels, and they’ll come out with a bruised foot. I looked at it. We started treating it. We jumped on it right away. He was burned a little bit down there.”, Baffert told the Daily Racing Form.
If either Bob Baffert (Justify) or Wayne Lukas (Sporting Chance and Bravazo) win the Preakness Stakes they will tie the record of seven Preakness wins held by R. Wyndham Walden from over a century ago.
Post Positions and Odds:
1. Quip (12-1) – Rested, won the G2 Tampa Derby. Bypassed the Kentucky Derby to run this race. Will it pay off?
2. Lone Sailor (15-1) – Only one win in nine starts, 8th in the Derby, muddy track will not help his chances.
3. Sporting Chance (30-1) – Great breeding, hall of fame trainer, but will need other horses to falter to win.
4. Diamond King (30-1) – Five out of six times in the money with four wins but big jump in class may be too much.
5. Good Magic (3-1) – 2nd in the slop in the Derby, he should be on all tickets. Can he catch Justify in the stretch?
6. Tenfold (20-1) – Lightly raced (only three starts) and rested but may he be too green to beat this bunch.
7. Justify (1-2) – All class. Four starts, four wins, including the Derby. Can he win his fifth race in only 90 days?
8. Bravazo (20-1) – 6th in the Derby after a wide trip. Less traffic this race. Will be closing hard. Long shot to win?
I don’t see a lot of value in this race and the track will be off so I’m only playing a $1.00 four horse trifecta box using the 1,5,7,8 total $24.00.