Preakness Day Stakes Picks Predictions and Previews: There are 14 races on Saturday’s card at Pimlico Race Course with eight stakes races including the Preakness Stakes and a first post time of 10:30 AM EST. We will preview and provide our top three selections for each of the stakes races on the card. Preakness Day Stakes Picks, Predictions and Preview (Saturday, May 19).
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Race number 5 – James W. Murphy Stakes is for three-years and run at a distance of one and one sixteenth miles over the turf with a post time of 12:51 PM EST. Our selections: 6-9-3
6. Say the Word (5/2 ML) – This Graham Motion trained gelding has been getting better with each start and broke his maiden last out at Keeneland. He makes the jump today to stakes company, but if he continues to progress he should be tough against this field.
9. Coltandmississippi (3/1 ML) – Todd Pletcher sends this colt out for his second start off of a two month layoff. He tried the turf for the first time and they must have liked what they say as they are entering him into another stakes race back on the turf.
3. Tap Daddy (12/1 ML) – I may be stretching a little here, but this Steve Asmussen trained colt has won twice on turf listed as yielding and with the amount of they have received this week at Pimlico if the race stays on the turf I would assume it would be classified as yielding. A nice shot at a decent price.
Race number 7 – Dixie Stakes (Gr. 2) is for three-year-olds and upward is run at a distance of one and one sixteenth miles over the turf with a post time of 2:07 PM EST. Our selections: 7-4-8
7. World Approval (1/1 ML) – The 2017 Breeders’ Cup Mile champ looked flat in his last outing at Santa Anita in the Frank Kilroe Mile Stakes (Gr. 1), but he did not have his usual jockey that day and John Velazquez is back in the irons and I expect a bounce back performance.
4. Frostmourne (9/2 ML) – This colt has won stakes races on yielding turf, but this will be his third start off of a layoff and that often is a best effort race for many horses. Trainer Christophe Clement is great at choosing his spots and this one had a nice work over the Belmont turf last week in preparation for this race.
8. Divisidero (5/1 ML) – Well we have not seen this one on the track since last October at Keeneland but the recent works have been fast so I expect that he is ready to fire in this spot. The layoff will keep some bettors away so if he’s ready there will be value on this horse anywhere near the morning line.
Race number 8 – Chick Lang Stakes is for three-year-olds and is run at a distance of six furlongs over the dirt with a post time of 2:45 PM EST. Our selections: 5-7-9
5. Mitole (3/5 ML) – This colt can set the pace of come from off the pace, and is head and shoulders above the rest of this field. He should win for fun.
7. Curly’s Rocket (6/1 ML) – Will make his second start for trainer Al Stall and is coming in off of a win at Oaklawn Park on April 13th. Jose Ortiz gets the ride and should keep him out of an early pace battle with Mitole leaving enough in the tank to hold off the rest of the field.
9. Soutache (8/1 ML) – This colt only has five career starts, but has hit the board in each of them with three wins, a second and a third. He has done all of his racing at Gulfstream Park and has not dealt with an off track yet, but he has some mud pedigree so I’ll give him a chance to hit the board again today.
Race number 9 – Gallorette Stakes (Gr. 3) is for fillies and mares three-years-old and upward and is run at a distance of one and three sixteenth miles over the turf with a post time of 3:25 PM EST. Our selections: 8-6-2
8. Elysea’s World (9/2 ML) – Chad Brown brings this one in off of a three month layoff but she has only missed the board once since Saratoga last August, and won her last race at Gulfstream Park on February 10th. She has been working consistently and should be primed to fire today.
6. Blessed Silence (12/1 ML) – She made her first North American start for trainer Christophe Clement at Aqueduct on April 22nd and should improve on that effort today if she takes to the soft turf.
2. Brooks House (12/1 ML) – I like the jockey change to Ricardo Santana Jr. on this mare by Steve Asmussen. She has steadily improved since a trainer change in October 2017 and I believe she could surprise in a classier field that she has faced before.
Race number 10 – Maryland Sprint Stakes is for three-year-olds and upward and is run at a distance of six furlongs over the dirt with a post time of 4:05 PM EST. Our selections are: 5-9-8
5. Switzerland (5/2 ML) – This colt was purchased for $500,000 and promptly took his entire three-year-old campaign trying to break his maiden. He finally succeeded in February at Aqueduct and the connections made a trainer change from Chad Brown to Steve Asmussen. He has won both his starts for the Asmussen barn and seems have figured it out.
9. Long Haul Bay (2/1 ML) – The Chad Brown trainee will try to seek redemption for his trainer when he goes to battle with Switzerland. He has won three of his four career starts and he only missed the board in the Woody Stephens Stakes (Gr. 2) when he faced some tougher competition.
8. Fellowship (12/1 ML) – I like that this five-year-old has experience and good results on a wet track. It should benefit him and give him a chance to pick up a piece of the trifecta against this field.
Race number 11 – The Very One Stakes is for fillies and mares, three-years-old and upward at a distance of five furlongs over the turf with a post time of 4:42 PM EST. Our selections: 7-12-6
7. Girls Know Best (3/1 ML) – This filly was claimed out of a race at Keeneland in October 2017 and then has gone on to two wins and a second in four races with new trainer Eddie Kenneally. If she gets a clean start and the lead they will not catch her.
12. Just Talkin (9/2 ML) – Trainer Jason Servis has had this mare on the bench since a victory at Gulfstream Park on March 25th, but she has proven that she comes back strong off a layoff and I expect a game effort today from her.
6. Jessica Krupnick (30/1 ML) – This one is a hunch play based on the weather. She took and held the lead last out at Woodbine over an all-weather surface and was fourth by less than a length. She has had success over off tracks and always seems to show up. She could blow up your tickets at a price with the right trip.
Race number 12 – LARC Sir Barton Stakes for three-year-olds and is run at a distance of one and one sixteenth miles over the dirt with a post time of 5:39 PM EST. Our selections: 2-8-11
2. Pony Up (7/2 ML) – This Todd Pletcher colt always seems to show up, and consistently has hit the board in his short career. He has only missed it one time so far. He has closed well into tougher fields than this and he becomes a stakes winner today.
8. Ax Man (8/5 ML) – This Bob Baffert trainee will be a big favorite and has dominated in two of his three starts looking impressive, but I have my doubts that he will enjoy a muddy track the same way he dominated over the Santa Anita surface. He is a very talented colt and will be one to watch this year, I just don’t believe that this is his race.
11. Title Ready (5/1 ML) – He set the pace in the Rebel Stakes (Gr. 2) at Oaklawn and was passed in the stretch by three Kentucky Derby participants to finish fourth so he has experience that many in here do not possess. I believe that Jose Ortiz will keep this one close to the front and hold on for a piece of the trifecta.
Race number 13 – Preakness Stakes (Gr. 1) is for three-year-olds and run at a distance of one and three sixteenth miles over the dirt with a post time of 6:48 PM EST. You can find my preview of the entire Preakness Stakes field here. Our selections: 7-1-5
7. Justify (1/2 ML) – Do I like to bet the chalk? No, if you spend your entire horse wagering life betting chalk you will not have a very long run, but sometimes you have to accept that you cannot beat the favorite, and today is one of those days for me. Justify did not even look like he was trying his best in the Kentucky Derby and he still held off a very good horse in Good Magic. I do not believe that any of the newcomers to today’s field have a chance to beat the Kentucky Derby champ and believe he will be chasing the Triple Crown when we get to Belmont Park in three weeks.
1. Quip (12/1 ML) – love this horse and even had a Kentucky Derby future wager on him. At first I was disappointed that he was not even given an opportunity to test himself against that field, but realized that he has been on the bench training, resting and recuperating for a shot at the champ today. The Tampa Bay Derby (Gr. 2) champion may find himself in an early pace battle, but I believe that Florent Geroux will try and sit just off of Justify and wait to move with him. I am not sure he has enough in the tank to get by him, but he should give him a challenge.
5. Good Magic (3/1 ML) – My Kentucky Derby pick ran a great race and gave his all but it still was not good enough to challenge Justify. I trust Chad Brown as a trainer, but question bringing this one back on two weeks rest when he just gave an all-out effort. An interesting stat to ponder is that the top two finishers in the Kentucky Derby have faced off in the Preakness 33 times previously. The Kentucky Derby winner has won 16 of those rematches while the Derby runner-up has only won the Preakness 3 times. I would have preferred to see Good Magic get a rest and come back for the Belmont Stakes. And I still believe he is better than the horses other than Justify in this field, but I prefer Quip today as my second selection because he is fresh.
Other horses to consider underneath on your Preakness Trifecta and Superfecta:
8. Bravazo (20/1 ML) – The D. Wayne Lukas trainee outran his 67-1 odds in the Kentucky Derby to finish a game sixth after racing wide the entire time on a sloppy track. And the last time Lukas had a horse finish sixth in the Kentucky Derby was 2013 and that horse, Oxbow, came back to win the Preakness.
6. Tenfold (20/1 ML) – This colt only has three races under his belt, but he looked good in the Arkansas Derby against a talented field and any improvement on that effort gets him on the board Saturday.
2. Lone Sailor (15/1 ML) – With all of the rain at Pimlico this week it may take a boat to get around the track so why not take a little shot with the only sailor out there. This colt actually ran a good Kentucky Derby and gets a jockey upgrade with Irad Ortiz, Jr. hopping aboard so he may get a little piece.
Enjoy Preakness Day at Pimlico Race Course, and May the Horse Be With You!
2018 Preakness Stakes Predictions
2018 Preakness Stakes Predictions and Odds (143rd “The Run for the Black-Eyed Susans”) from expert horse racing handicapper Marco D’Angelo: Direct from Las Vegas, WagerTalk.com TV host Ralph Michaels @CalSportsLV and Marco D’Angelo @MarcoInVegas look at the Preakness odds and give their predictions and picks on the 143rd annual Preakness Stakes horse race scheduled to take place on Saturday, May 19, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. Some of the topics covered for the Preakness Stakes handicapping analysis are:
►Recap of the Kentucky Derby
►Can Justify win the Triple Crown
►Difference when handicapping the Kentucky Derby vs the Preakness Stakes
►Who are the top Preakness contenders outside of Justify
►Preakness long shots
►General horse racing handicapping tips when betting on the Preakness
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