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Steve Asmussen sends out three horses in the 145th Preakness this weekend, but his first call rider, Ricardo Santana, Jr., will not be aboard any of them. I expect to see him at Keeneland, instead; and, that tells me what I need to know in terms of their chances to win the race. Excession, Max Player, and Pneumatic are morning line 30-1, 15-1 and 20-1 respectively. Excession has not run since March and has had surgery to remove a knee chip. Max Player finished 5th in the Kentucky Derby and is the only horse in the race to start in all three jewels of the Triple Crown. And, Pneumatic, coming off a win in the Pegasus at Monmouth, was always pointed to this race. Could one or more hit the board? Absolutely. But I do not see your winner here.
I do see the winner in either post position #3 or #9. Authentic is perfectly drawn to the outside and Art Collector should have no trouble from the three spot. Both have speed and should find their respective positions at the front of the pack, along with NY Traffic, Thousand Words, and Swiss Skydiver, who is the only filly in the race.
Mr. Big News is a threat to come running late as he did with his third place finish in the Kentucky Derby. Of course, I will be cheering for the hometown horse, Art Collector, for the win!
Saturday should be an exciting and somewhat overwhelming race day as there are wonderful cards at Pimlico, Keeneland, and Belmont. The $1 million dollar Preakness is a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Keeneland in November. So we will see at least one of these horses in that race for sure.
Here are the entries and morning line odds for the 145th Preakness at Pimlico:
1. Excession (30-1)
2. Mr. Big News (12-1)
3. Art Collector (5-2)
4. Swiss Skydiver (6-1)
5. Thousand Words (6-1)
6. Jesus’ Team (30-1)
7. NY Traffic (15-1)
8. Max Player (15-1)
9. Authentic (9-5)
10. Pneumatic (20-1)
11. Liveyourbeastlife (30-1)