Triple Crown Race #2 – The Preakness Stakes Preview

The second leg of the Triple Crown will occur this coming Saturday–May 16th–with the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico with a $1.5 million dollar purse. Approximate post time is 5:14PM CST and the race will be televised on NBC and HRTV. Kentucky Derby winner American Pharoah is expected to be the live odds race favorite.

Overall, I don’t think this is a race where you will hit a big payout. Last year, I hit two Superfectas, one keying California Chrome to win with 4 horses and another that was a Boxed Superfecta. A $1 Superfecta disappointingly paid out $178. I think I came out $300 ahead.

Anyway, American Pharoah, Firing Line and Dortmund should be in your Trifectas and Superfectas. These are the three top horses once again for this race. I will be placing some Boxed Trifectas using these three horses but I don’t expect as big of a payout as I received in the Kentucky Derby where a $10 Boxed Tri paid out $1010. I always like to bet some straight $1 superfectas as well. So I will be using Danzig Moon, Mr Z and Divining Rod to round out my Superfectas. If the Super High Five is an option this year with an 8 horse field, then I will place some of these type of bets. Last year a $2 Super High Five paid out $2,438.20 with a 10 horse field.

Who will win the race?

Tough call. Did Dortmund show that he was tired in the Derby due to the extra race he ran in 2015 compared to American Pharoah and Firing Line? Or will this extra work give him more stamina than the others coming back two weeks later. In the Kentucky Derby, American Pharoah also had the 2nd longest trip (6,720 feet) of any Derby runner (behind Frosted) according to Trakus. If it is a wet race, American Pharoah has experience winning the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park on a sloppy track. Currently, weather.com predicts an 80% chance of evening thunderstorms for Saturday. With this information, I am leaning towards American Pharoah as the winner.

Firing Line seems to be an upward trending horse, finally beating Dortmund in the Kentucky Derby in his third race against the Baffert colt. I felt good enough to place a $50 win bet on him in the Kentucky Derby as his odds were such that I would have received a nice payout if he won.

I expect that this year’s Preakness will be run in 1:54 second range so long as it is a dry race. I don’t see any fresh horse coming into this race and upsetting the favorites.

Below is my ranking of the field:

1) American Pharoah – Post Position: 1, Morning Line Odds: 4/5
Sire: Pioneerof the Nile – Finished 2nd in 2009 Kentucky Derby
Jockey: Victor Espinoza
6 Starts, 5 Wins, Win Pct: 83%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 100%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 100%
Last Three Starts: 1st (100 Beyer), 1st (105 Beyer), 1st (105 Beyer)
Average Beyer Speed Figure of Last Two Starts: 105
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:41.95 at Santa Anita Park 9/27/2014
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:48.52 at Oaklawn Park 4/11/2015
Fastest 1 1/4th Mile TIme: 2:03.02 (Official Time) – 2.02.80 (Trakus Time) at Churchill Downs 5/2/2015
American Pharoah’s Equibase Profile

2) Dortmund – Post Position: 2, Morning Line Odds: 7/2
Sire: Big Brown – 2008 Kentucky Derby & Preakness Stakes Winner
Jockey: Martin Garcia
7 Starts, 6 Wins, Win Pct: 100%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 100%
Last Three Starts: 1st (104 Beyer). 1st (106 Beyer), 3rd (101 Beyer)
Average Beyer Speed Figure of Last Two Starts:  103.5
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:40.86 at Los Alamitos 12/20/2014
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:48.73 at Santa Anita Park 4/4/2015
Fastest 1 1/4th Mile TIme: 2:03.16 (Trakus Time) at Churchill Downs 5/2/2015
Dortmund’s Equibase Profile

3) Firing Line – Post Position: 8, Morning Line Odds: 4/1
Sire: Line of David – Won 2010 Arkansas Derby, finished 18th in 2010 Kentucky Derby
Jockey: Gary Stevens
5 Starts, 2 Wins, Win Pct: 40%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 33%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 100%
Last Three Starts: 2nd (104 Beyer), 1st (97 Beyer), 2nd (104 Beyer)
Average Beyer Speed Figure of Last Two Starts: 100.5
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:40.88 (calculated) at Los Alamitos 12/20/2014
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:47.39 (track record) at Sunland Park 3/22/2015
Fastest 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:03.18 (calculated) at Churchill Downs 5/2/2015
Firing Line’s Equibase Profile

4) Divining Rod – Post Position: 7, Morning Line Odds: 12/1
Sire: Tapit – 2004 Wood Memorial Winner, finished 9th in the 2004 Kentucky Derby
Jockey: Javier Castellano
5 Starts, 2 Wins, Win Pct: 40%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 33%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 100%
Last Three Starts: 2nd, 3rd, 1st (98 Beyer)
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:43.29 at Keeneland 4/11/2015
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: Never raced longer than 1 1/16th mile
Divining Rod’s Equibase Profile

5) Danzig Moon – Post Position: 4, Morning Line Odds: 15/1
Sire: Malibu Moon – One Maiden win in 2 starts
Jockey: Julien Leparoux
6 Starts, 1 Wins, Win Pct: 16.7%  Graded Stakes Win Pct: 0%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 50%
Last Three Starts: 4th, 2nd, 5th
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:45.60 (calculated) at Tampa Bay Downs 3/7/2015
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:50.25 (calculated) at Keeneland 4/4/2015
Fastest 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:03.81 (Trakus Time) at Churchill Downs 5/2/2015
Danzig Moon’s Equibase Profile

6)  Mr. Z – Post Position: 3, Morning Line Odds: 20/1
Sire: Malibu Moon – one maiden win in 2 career starts
Jockey: Cory Nakatani
13 Starts, 1 Win, Win Pct: 7.7%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 0%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 69.2%
Last Three starts: 9th, 3rd, 13th
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:40.89 at Los Alamitos 12/20/2014
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:49.92 at Oaklawn Park 4/11/2015
Fastest 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:05.20 (Trakus) at Churchill Downs 5/2/2015
Mr Z’s Equibase Profile

7) Bodhisattva – Post Position: 6, Morning Line Odds: 20/1
Sire: Student Counsil – 2007 Pacific Classic Stakes Winner, finished 11th in 2008 Breeders’ Cup Classic
Jockey: Trevor McCarthy
11 Starts, 3 Wins, Win Pct: 27.3%, Graded Stakes Win Pct: 0%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 72.7%
Last Three Starts: 4th, 2nd, 1st (90 Beyer)
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:45.18 at Pimlico 4/18/2015
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:52.92 (calculated) at Laurel Park 3/21/2015
Bodhisattva Equibase Profile

8) Tale of Verve – Post Position: 5, Morning Line Odds: 30/1
Sire: Tale of Ekati – 2008 Wood Memorial Winner and finished 4th in 2008 Kentucky Derby
Jockey: Joel Rosario.
6 Starts, 1 Wins, Win Pct: 16.7%  Graded Stakes Win Pct: 0%, Top 3 Finish Pct: 66.7%
Last Three Starts: 4th, 2nd, 1st (72 Beyer)
Fastest 1 1/16th Mile Time: 1:47.85 at The Fair Grounds 3/5/2015
Fastest 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:53.67 (estimated) at Keeneland 4/23/2015
Tale of Verve Equibase Profile

–Michael

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