The 2016 Preakness Stakes Starting Lineup, Post Positions, Odds and Analysis

May 14th 2016 – Updated 5/21/2017 at 3:15 PM CST

Below are the entries, post-positions and morning line odds for the 2016 Preakness Stakes along with detailed profiles of each horse. I have also included projected order of finish if run on a dry, fast track. Note that a bold font text is hyperlinked to either a horse‚Äôs Equibase profile or a race video from Youtube. This is to aid in your own research.

Weather Report:  The track right now is rated as “Muddy” which is between “Good” and “Sloppy” More rain is expected but it seems as if it will be light showers right around race time. Overall, the track conditions currently thus far don’t seem to be affecting much. There is more speed in this race than the Kentucky Derby. So this helps closers who seem unaffected by the track conditions so long as they stay in the clear and out of the splatter from horses ahead of them. I am not concerned how Nyquist will handle these off track conditions.

***Horses who have raced on a sloppy track include: Exaggerator (1st – Santa Anita Derby), Uncle Lino (3rd – Santa Anita Derby), Abiding Star (1st – race at Parx 4/12/16), Cherry Wine (1st – race at Churchill Downs 11/28/15) and Fellowship (7th – Florida Sire Affirmed Stakes 9/5/15).

141st Preakness Stakes at Pimlico – Race #13 – Post Time: 5:45 PM CST – NBC

1) Cherry Wine  (20/1) – My projected finish – 8th place
Career: 8 Starts 2-1-2-1
Last 3 starts: 1st–>4th–>3rd
Sire:  Paddy O’Prado (Finished 6th in the 2010 Preakness Stakes)
Trainer: Dale Romans (2011 Preakness Stakes Winning Trainer)
Jockey:  Corey Lanerie
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:50.50 (calculated) – Blue Grass Stakes
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 87, 88  – 87.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  88 – Blue Grass Stakes

2) Uncle Lino  (20/1) –  My projected finish – 6th place
Career: 7 Starts 2-2-2-1
Last 3 starts: 4th–>3rd–>1st
Sire: Uncle Mo  
Trainer: Gary Sherlock 
Jockey: Fernando Perez
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:51.02 (calculated) – Santa Anita Derby
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 90, 95  – 92.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  95 – California Chrome Stakes

3) Nyquist   (3/5) –  My projected finish – 1st place
Career: 8 Starts 8-0-0-0
Last 3 starts: 1st–>1st–>1st
Sire: Uncle Mo  
Trainer: Doug O’Neill (2012 Preakness Stakes Winning Trainer)
Jockey: Mario Gutierrez (2012 Preakness Stakes Winner)
Best 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:49.11 – Florida Derby
Best 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:01.31Kentucky Derby
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 94, 103  – 98.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure: 103 –Kentucky Derby

4) Awesome Speed (30/1) –  My projected finish – 11th place
Career: 6 Starts 4-0-0-1
Last 3 starts: 1st–>4th–>1st
Sire:  Awesome Again 
Trainer: Alan Goldberg
Jockey: Jevian Toledo
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:53.31 – Federico Tesio Stakes
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 74, 83  – 78.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  87 – Mucho Macho Man Stakes

5) Exaggerator (3/1) –  My projected finish – 3rd place (1st place if sloppy wet track)
Career: 10 Starts 4-3-1-1 
Last 3 starts: 3rd–>1st–>2nd
Sire: Curlin (2007 Preakness Stakes Winner)
Trainer: Keith Desormeaux
Jockey: Kent Desormeaux (1998 & 2008 Preakness Stakes Winner)
Best 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:49.66 – Santa Anita Derby
Best 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:01.51 (calculated) – Kentucky Derby
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 103, 101  – 102 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure: 103 – Santa Anita Derby

6) Lani (30/1) –  My projected finish – 9th place
Career: 7 Starts 3-1-0-1
Last 3 starts: 5th–>1st–>9th
Sire: Tapit (Finished 9th in 2004 Kentucky Derby)
Trainer: Mikio Matsunaga 
Jockey:  Yukata Take
Best 1 1/8th Mile Time: N/A – 1:52.84 (estimated time from 1900 Meter UAE Derby)
Best 1 1/4th Mile Time: 2:03.02 (calculated) – Kentucky Derby
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 83 (est), 87 – 85 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure: 87 –  Kentucky Derby

7) Collected (10/1) –  My projected finish – 4th place
Career: 6 Starts 4-1-0-1
Last 3 starts: 4th–>1st–>1st
Sire: City Zip
Trainer: Bob Baffert (1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2010 & 2015 Preakness Stakes Winning Trainer)
Jockey: Javier Castellano (2006 Preakness Stakes Winner)
Best 1 1/8th Mile Time: 1:48.90 – Sunland Park Festival of Racing
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 90, 90  – 90 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure: 90 – Lexington Stakes

8) Laoban (30/1) –  My projected finish – 10th place
Career: 4 Starts 0-2-1-1
Last 3 starts: 3rd–>2nd–>4th
Sire:  Uncle Mo 
Trainer: Eric Guillot
Jockey: Florent Geroux
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:50.98 (calculated) – Blue Grass Stakes
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 85, 84  – 84.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  85 – Gotham Stakes

9) Abiding Star (30/1) –  My projected finish – 7th place
Career: 11 Starts 5-1-1-0
Last 3 starts: 1st–>1st–>1st
Sire:  Uncle Mo 
Trainer: Edward Allard
Jockey: J.D. Acosta
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: N/A
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 83, 91 – 87 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  91 – Parx Derby

10) Fellowship (30/1) –  My projected finish – 5th place
Career: 12 Starts 2-3-3-1
Last 3 starts: 3rd–>3rd–>4th
Sire: Awesome of Course
Trainer: Mark Casse
Jockey: Jose Lezcano
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:49.79 – Florida Derby
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 87, 86  – 86.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure:  87 – Florida Derby

11) Stradivari (8/1) –  My projected finish – 2nd place
Career: 3 Starts 2-0-0-1
Last 3 starts: 4th–>1st–>1st
Sire: Medaglia d’Oro (Finished 8th in 2002 Preakness Stakes)
Trainer: Todd Pletcher 
Jockey: John Velazquez
Best 1 1/8 Mile Time: 1:48.64Keeneland Allowance Race 4/17/16
Last Two Beyer Speed Figures: 79, 100  – 89.5 avg
Best Beyer Speed Figure: 100Keeneland Allowance Race 4/17/16

New Shooters

Todd Pletcher’s Stradivari represents the biggest new threat to Nyquist. Even though he has only raced three times, he proved to be exceptionally fast in his last start–an allowance race at Keeneland. He produced a very nice time of 1:48.64 in this 1 1/8th mile race and received a 100 Beyer Speed Figure for his win. With that time, he would have blown away the Blue Grass Stakes field. Below is a video of the 2nd start of his career, a win at Gulfstream Park where he ran away from the field in a 1 1/16th mile race.

But we have been down this road before last year when Pletcher’s Materiality received a 109 Beyer Speed Figure in his 3rd start and win in the Florida Derby. Materiality went on to finish 6th in the Kentucky Derby and 8th in the Belmont Stakes. But note a couple of things. That Materiality’s time in the 1 1/8th mile 2015 Florida Derby was 1:52.30. Stradivari’s time of 1:48.64 in a 1 1/8th mile race at Keeneland was faster than Spectacular Bid and Holy Bull’s time of 1:50 flat in the Blue Grass Stakes. When comparing Materiality to Stradivari, nobody would say that Keeneland is a faster track than Gulfstream Park. Stradivari is a real threat to Nyquist.

Bob Baffert’s Collected is another new shooter than could hit the board. I felt he was good enough to be ranked in my top 10 Kentucky Derby Contenders but he failed to secure enough points to make the field.

Betting Advice

Rain is being forecasted for the Baltimore area on Saturday with an 80% chance of showers. Click HERE for weather updates. This will affect handicapping as it did last year. Right now for a dry race,  I would lean towards a Trifecta bet of four horses keying Nyquist to win. So Nyquist over Exaggerator, Stradivari and Collected–3 over 5, 7, 11. A $10 bet of this type would cost $60.

Here is a $1 Superfecta bet I made that costs $24: 3, 5, 11, with 3, 5, 11, with 5, 7, 11, with 1, 2, 7

Interesting fact: 23 out of the last 26 Preakness Stakes winners ran in the Kentucky Derby, this makes Exaggerator a little more attractive betting option and especially so if the race turns out to be wet, sloppy one.

If the race is run on a sloppy track, then I like this order of finish: 1st – Exaggerator, 2nd – Nyquist, 3rd – Stradivari, 4th – Uncle Lino–5-3-11-2


Florida Derby Preview – Nyquist vs Mohaymen

March 31st, 2016

Coming this Saturday will be the most intriguing race thus far this year when the top two Kentucky Derby contenders, Nyquist and Mohaymen, square off in the Florida Derby. It is very unusual for the consensus top two to meet before the Kentucky Derby as owners usually opt for the past of least resistance–a different Derby prep race and a better chance for 1st place money. Since both horses are undefeated, this is must-watch TV.

Mohaymen should be the race favorite, having already raced at the 1 1/8th mile distance as a 2 year old and also having two races of experience at Gulfstream Park. Whoever wins this race will be the heavy Kentucky Derby favorite will be from here on out. I expect the final race time to be in the 1:48 range provided it is run on a dry, fast track. Below are the post positions and morning line odds. I expect Mohaymen’s final race odds to lower, probably to 4/5.

Florida Derby – 1 1/8th Mile – Race #14 Gulfstream Park April 2nd – Post Time: 5:48PM CST

Post Position/Horse/Weight/Jockey/Trainer/ ML Odds
1. Sawyers Mickey (122) Spieth/Walder 30-1
2. Fellowship (122) Lezcano/Gold 15-1
3. Majesto (122) Castellano/Delgado 20-1
4. Nyquist (122) Gutierrez/O’Neill 6-5
5. Copingaway (122) Vasquez/Mejia 50-1
6. Chovanes (122) Zayas/Navarro 30-1
7. Takeittotheedge (122) Gaffalione/Romans 20-1
8. Fashionable Freddy (122) Juarez/Zito 30-1
9. Mohaymen (122) Alvarado/McLaughlin 1-1
10. Isofass (122) Leparoux/Abbott 30-1

Commentary: Overall, I think this race will shake out in this order: 1st- Mohaymen, 2nd-Nyquist and 3rd-Fellowship. But Fellowship, who has finished 3rd to Mohaymen in his last two starts at Gulfstream, could be a surprise in this race. So I would recommend playing a $10 Trifecta 4/9 over 2/4/9 over 2/4 that would cost $30. There will be a lot of 9 over 4 Exactas or 4/9 Boxed Exactas played in this race–I may play some too. However, if Fellowship can bust up the perceived Mohaymen-Nyquist 1-2 Finish, your Trifecta will pay out very nice.

If you want Superfecta advice, I would probably place a $5 straight Superfecta bet of 9 over 4 over 2 over 3/7/10. That will cost $15. I just don’t see this race as a great superfecta betting race with two low odds horses expected to finish 1-2.



Mohaymen and the Fountain of Youth Stakes


Mohaymen – photo by NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography

February 27th 2016

Today at Gulfstream Park, three Derby Trail horses put their undefeated records on the line in the $400,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes : race favorite Mohaymen (4 starts, 4 wins), Awesome Banner (3 wins in 3 starts) and Todd Pletcher’s Zulu (2 wins in 2 starts). Awesome Speed has won his last three starts and Fellowship finished 3rd to Mohaymen in the Holy Bull Stakes back on January 30th. The race will award 50-20-10-5 points to the 1st-2nd-3rd-4th place finishers. Click HERE to see the current leaderboard.

Fountain of Youth – 1 1/16th Mile – Race #12 at Gulfstream Park – Post Time: 4:30 PM CST

PP horse (weight) jockey/trainer/Odds
1. Fellowship (116) Lezcano/Gold – 20/1
2. Zulu (116) Velazquez/Pletcher – 3/1
3. Golden Ray (116) Vasquez/Rodriquez – 30/1
4. Awesome Speed (120) Ortiz/Goldberg – 4/1
5. Awesome Banner (120) Caraballo/Gold – 7/2
6. Mohaymen (120) Alvarado/McLaughlin – 6/5

Commentary: Overall, I expect another win by Mohaymen but I don’t have a good feel for who will finish 2nd. Zulu has only raced in two sprint races (7 furlongs or less) and his last start was on a sloppy sealed track. So I am not sure how he will respond on a dry, fast track stretching out another 1 1/2 furlongs. Awesome Speed has won at Gulfstream at a 1-Mile distance in the Mucho Macho Man Stakes back on January 2nd.

My Superfecta pick would be 6-2-1-5 but don’t make a huge wager on this one as I see this race as wide-open and unpredictable from positions 2nd through 4th. If Fellowship’s odds stay around 20-1, it would be tempting to place a 6-1 straight Exacta. I think the pace will be faster than the Holy Bull Stakes, so I expect Mohaymen to win this one with a time under 1:42.