The 145th running of the Preakness Stakes will take place on Saturday, and while there is no Triple Crown on the line this promises to be another exciting running of this storied Stakes race. Kentucky Derby winner Authentic heads a strong field of 11, but notably Tiz The Law has decided to skip the Preakness after losing the Kentucky Derby.
In 2019, War of Will was victorious in the Preakness Stakes at 6-1. He beat of a field of 13 that day, however Maximum Security did not run in that race. Authentic will be slated in as the favorite, but there is plenty of chances to see another upset in the 2020 Preakness Stakes.
#1 Excession – Ridden by Sheldon Russell and trained by Steve Asmussen. Excession ran 2nd to Nadal in the Rebel Stakes back in March. Once that race was over though he had surgery to remove a knee chip. He is now returning off of a 203 day lay-off to take a shot in this race. Coming off a lay-off and a surgery and jumping into a field like this is going to be too much for this horse to handle. He is just 1-9 lifetime, and hasn’t beaten any horses of this caliber.
#2 Mr. Big News – Ridden by Gabriel Saez and trained by Bret Calhoun. Mr. Big News ran very big in the Kentucky Derby at 46-1. I had pretty much dismissed his chances, but he made a big move around the turn and sustained that effort for a 3rd place finish. There is nothing to say he couldn’t get the same trip, and make the same move. You are still getting value on this horse, as he was listed at 12-1 on the morning line. I think once again that a 3rd place finish will be the ceiling though.
#3 Art Collector – Ridden by Brian Hernandez and trained by Thomas Drury. This was my pick to upset Tiz The Law at the Kentucky Derby prior to the horse being scratched. I am likely going to come right back to him here. He was won 5 races in a row, all in dominating fashion. He has good tactical speed and can work out a trip right behind Authentic. He is an absolute must use on a wager.
#4 Swiss Skydiver – Ridden by Robby Albarado and trained by Kenny McPeek. The filly enters in here in an attempt to upset the boys in the Preakness. Last time out she lost the Kentucky Oaks to Shedaresthedevil after a brutal stretch run against Gamine tired them both out. That race was a mile and 1/8. She shortens up just a touch in this race, and that will help but I am not sure she can beat Art Collector or Authentic. She ran versus Art Collector in the Toyota Bluegrass at Keeneland finishing 2nd beaten by 3 lengths.
#5 Thousand Words – Ridden by Florent Geroux and trained by Bob Baffert. Thousand Words was a huge scratch in the Derby, as it allowed Authentic to get an uncontested lead up front when it was likely that he would send with Authentic. Now, he doesn’t need the lead to win, but it is also his best opportunity. There is some pace in this race, and it’ll be interesting to see what Geroux does on him. Either way I don’t like this ones chances here. If he sends to the lead it’ll be a grueling trip with Authentic, and if he’s taken back off the pace I believe Art Collector is just better in the same scenario.
Jesus’ Team. Jose D’Angelo trainer profile saddling his first Triple Crown starter
#6 Jesus’ Team – Ridden by Jevian Toledo and trained by Jose D’Angelo. Will be one of the longest shots on the board and with good reason. He has lot to other longshots in this race, and doesn’t appear to have much of a shot. He does have 2 wins, but those were against nowhere near the caliber he is facing today. He is a good horse, but not for this level. Will likely be sitting mid-pack, but don’t expect a movement from there.
#7 Ny Traffic – Ridden by Horacio Karamanos and trained by Saffie Joseph. Not sure what the idea was in the Derby. He rushed up to 2nd place just off Authentic and pressed while wide only to then severely drop off and finish a well-beaten 8th place. The post here is better, and I think the trip will be better too. This is still the same horse that lost to Authentic by a nose in the Haskell. I think a better trip will be worked out for this one, and the value is once again there on this horse.
#8 Max Player – Ridden by Paco Lopez and trained by Steve Asumussen. I really liked Max Player heading into the Derby because he had a good post, and was going to get a good trip. He did sit on the rail, and saved ground throughout, but never was able to close into the hot pace set by Authentic. I think this is another horse that can provide value on the end of Trifecta’s and Superfecta’s but that is it.
#9 Authentic – Ridden by John Velazquez and trained by Bob Baffert. We all saw what he did in the Kentucky Derby. Just an absolutely wonderful performance holding off Tiz The Law down the stretch for the win. There is no Tiz The Law here, but there is plenty of chances for this horse to be beat. The pace will once again be hot, and Art Collector will be a fresh horse who is sitting in right behind him. I’m not sure he’ll get the lead easily by himself, but if he is able to get to the front with no pace pressure he will win again for sure. Drawing the outside certainly helps his cause for doing just that.
#10 Pneumatic – Ridden by Joe Bravo and trained by Steve Asumussen. He is 3 for 5 lifetime and is coming off a nice win in the Pegasus at Monmouth. I think Pneumatic can sit a very good trip and provide real value on the back end of wagers. He is 20-1 on the morning line and will likely be around that price at race time, but his style is very much set up for this race and I really like him to run the type of race that Mr. Big News ran in the Kentucky Derby.
#11 Liveyourbestlfie – Ridden by Trevor Mccarthy and trained by Jorge Abreau. Finished in 2nd place in the Jim Dandy at Saratoga at 14-1 prior to coming into this race, but that race wasn’t as good as it normally is. This is a significant jump in class, and the post doesn’t help. He’s going to have to use early speed to get position in behind Authentic, but not sure he has the class to then pass any horses of that caliber.
1: #3 Art Collector
2: #9 Authentic
3: #10 Pneumatic
4: #8 Max Player