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Preakness Stakes Breakdown
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The second leg of the "Triple Crown" is set and the field is ready for the 142nd running of the Preakness Stakes!

Preakness Stakes ML Odds

2017 Breakdown
PP - Horse ML Odds Jockey (Preakness Record) Trainer (Preakness Record)
1 - Multiplier 30/1 Joel Rosario (0-4) Brendan Walsh (Debut)
Notes: Broke his maiden in his third start at the Fair Grounds before taking the Illinois Derby in a sharp time going nine furlongs while making his stakes debut. He’s been sold between starts but his trainer has had him for all four tries. He’s improved in each of his starts but he’ll have to make a big jump to compete here and I don’t think he beat much last out. I’m passing.
2 - Cloud Computing 12/1 Javier Castellano (1-5) Chad Brown (Debut)
Notes: He’ll be making just the fourth start of his career and is still eligible for an entry level allowance contest but consider this: he was second in the Gotham, the prep that yielded the highest Beyer Speed Figure on the Derby Trail in just the second start of his career. Then he ran third and made up ground to do so in the Wood Memorial on a day where speed reigned supreme. Castellano upset this with “new shooter” Bernardini in 2006 and asked off Gunnevera to ride this guy. An obvious player from some of the sharpest connections in the game. I’m using him in all of my wagers.
3 - Hence 20/1 Florent Geroux (0-1) Steve Asmussen (2-5)
Notes: For the life of me, I will never understand the fascination people have with this horse. I wish I could have booked every dollar on him in Louisville, as 15-1 was an awful price on a horse I thought had zero chance. He got beat over 18 lengths and did hardly any running. Guess what? I don’t like him in here either AND I think he’s going to take some more “wiseguy” money.
4 - Always Dreaming 4/5 John Velazquez (0-7) Todd Pletcher (0-8)
Notes: He’s a perfect four for four with Pletcher, all around two turns. He won the Derby decisively, sitting just off the early pacesetter before opening up a sizeable lead and holding sway throughout the Churchill stretch. He should get a similar trip here. He’s your prohibitive Preakness favorite. There are the pros. Here are the cons. Churchill was a “no pass zone” for the three days leading up to and including the Derby. Battle of Midway was third past the wire the first AND final time. They couldn’t have dreamed up, pun intended, a better scenario for him. Pletcher has run 5200 horses over the past five years. Only two of them started with less than 15 days rest. The fact that both lost is unimportant. It just shows that it’s not something the barn does. Maybe he is THAT good and can overcome that. You want to take 4-5 to find out? I don’t. Look, he can obviously win but I honestly don’t think he will. I’ll use him protectively in a saver pick 4 ticket or two and in some exotic wagers but I hope he runs the way most Pletcher Preakness runners have in the past.
5 - Classic Empire 3/1 Julien Leparoux (0-7) Mark Casse (0-3)
Notes: Of all the trips in the Derby, the juvenile champ had the worst, save bucking bronco Thunder Snow. Slammed at start, jostled about, spun wide the entire way…..what might have been had he gotten a clean trip. He ran a dynamite race when you consider everything he went through leading up to the event. But that is the past. We have to worry about now. You’ll hear a lot about Always Dreaming having to deal with just two weeks between efforts but this guy has to deal too. Simply put, do you believe he’s the trip horse out of the Derby or is he the trap? EVERYONE saw what we did so he’ll easily be the second choice. And I just don’t feel comfy making him my top pick. He is an obvious contender and will be on all of my tickets.
6 - Gunnevera 15/1 Mike Smith (1-15) Antonio Sano (Debut)
Notes: More and more I see of him, the more I think that Fountain of Youth explosion is the exception and not the rule. Granted, he didn’t have the best trip in the Derby, put quite a few had worse. He just never fired. And while he gets “Money Mike” in the saddle, what does it say that Castellano jumped ship almost immediately after the Derby to ride Cloud Computing? A slave to pace, he’d really need things to collapse for him to have a chance and that usually doesn’t happen here. I’m passing on him.
7 - Term of Art 30/1 Jose Ortiz (Debut) Doug O’Neill (1-3)
Notes: An also-ran all winter and spring long in SoCal, he’ll get a rider change to one of the more aggressive jockeys in the game. Problem is, he doesn’t have an ounce of speed. If JO gets him near the lead, he’s Houdini. He has a wonderful pedigree but he hasn’t run to it in his previous nine tries. Why should I think he’s going to wake up in Baltimore, of all places? He’s no I’ll Have Another, O’Neill’s winner from 2012, that’s for sure. Not for me.
8 - Senior Investment 30/1 Channing Hill (Debut) Kenny McPeek (0-3)
Notes: Stormed home to take the Lexington over at Keeneland five weeks ago against a suspect bunch. He’s really improved since McPeek added Lasix but I’m always dubious of these horses that winter at the Fair Grounds. His big late rally makes you think he’s going to relish the added distance of the classic races but I don’t think he’s anything more than a decent, middle distance type. Pass.
9 - Lookin At Lee 10/1 Corey Lanerie (0-1) Steve Asmussen (2-5)
Notes: He came less than three lengths away from making me look like a genius in Louisville as I said for months that the Derby had the feel of a horse like him picking up the pieces and paying $65. Well, he’d have paid $68.40 if he could have just run down Always Dreaming but he couldn’t. The rail draw last out, as I expected, was a blessing, as they couldn’t have gotten a better trip. He simply wasn’t good enough. Unfortunately, I think that is this guy’s destiny. He’ll probably never be quite good enough to win. But he always gets a piece. I’ll use him underneath.
10 - Conquest Mo Money 15/1 Jorge Carreno (Debut) Miguel Hernandez (Debut)
Notes: I’m going to get a lot of grief and ribbing for this, but he’s my pick to win the Preakness. There is very little early pace in here, save this guy, who is easily at his best when free-wheeling on the front end. Always Dreaming and Johnny V will be more than happy to use him as a target and I don’t see any of the others in here pressing him early, unless the Classic Empire camp has other ideas, which I think is unlikely. If he gets in front early and I’m right about Always Dreaming, who I truly believe will be calling it a day by the quarter pole, he’ll have a decent-sized lead into the stretch. All he has to do is close the door. Maybe he will. Maybe he won’t. I’m willing to find out at 25-1 or so.

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