This Saturday afternoon will be the 139th running of the Preakness Stakes and all eyes will be on the winner of the Kentucky Derby, California Chrome, as he continues on the quest for the Triple Crown. Can he get that second jewel at Pimlico or will we have to wait for at least another year to see another horse make a go at the crown? Here are my picks.
WIN: California Chrome (3-5) Obviously, it is easy to say that California Chrome was the best horse at the Derby, but it was ultimately a dominant win as he had pulled away down the stretch to win relatively easily as he showed that he was the most talented horse in the field. He should be able to get off to a clean start from the third post position and I do not think the horse will suffer from getting shorter rest than he is used to. Also, this is a small and a relatively less than stellar field for him to go up against. California Chrome will be the first horse since Affirmed to win both the Derby and the Preakness.
PLACE: Kid Cruz (20-1) Here is the only horse in the field that has raced at Pimlico before, and that is something key to factor. And oh, he only won that race. Now Kid Cruz is facing a tougher field than he is used to, but in a field with a lot of speed horses, it may be uniquely suited as it is a horse that excels at picking off horses down the stretch. Could be a nice long shot to win it if you are feeling bold.
SHOW: Bayern (10-1) This is a speed horse trained by the legendary Bob Baffert, who knows a thing or two about winning the Preakness. Bayern drew a solid post position of fifth and a potential ace in the hole is jockey Rosie Napravnik, who started her career at Pimlico and has plenty of experience at this race course. The concern is whether this horse has enough speed to stretch it out for the full mile 3/16.