Only seven other contenders are daring to face the undefeated Justify in this weekend’s Preakness Stakes: will one of them dethrone the king? Get the scoop on the field and vote for your pick here!
The 143rd running of the Preakness Stakes takes place on Saturday, May 19, 2018 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. As the second jewel of the Triple Crown, excitement can either crescendo or dreams will be dashed, as Justify, the undefeated winner of the Kentucky Derby, looks to continue his streak and etch his place in history forever.
This year’s Preakness field includes a few serious contenders from the Derby, as well as a few new shooters coming in fresh. Here’s our quick run-down of the field — make sure you vote in our poll at the end! Odds listed are morning line as of press time.
Post Position 1: Quip (12-1)
Bay colt by Distorted Humor
Owned by WinStar Farm LLC, China Horse Club International Ltd. and SF Racing LLC
Trained by Rodolphe Brisset
Ridden by Florent Geroux
Claims to fame: winner in the Tampa Bay Derby, second in the Arkansas Derby
Quip’s connections opted to skip the Kentucky Derby, stating that the Preakness “suited him best.” Whether that will be enough to overpower Justify remains to be seen, but Quip is one of the more intriguing fresh horses entering the Preakness with a serious chance.
Post Position 2: Lone Sailor (15-1)
Bay colt by Majestic Warrior
Owned by G M B Racing
Trained by Thomas Amoss
Ridden by Irad Ortiz
Claims to fame: eighth in the Kentucky Derby, second in the Louisiana Derby Stakes, third in the 2017 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity
Lone Sailor goes off on considerably shorter odds than he did in the Kentucky Derby (his post position draw morning line was 50-1). He did catch the eye of many for his excellent workouts up to the Derby, and his eighth-place finish in the intense slop at Churchill Downs was pretty respectable, all things considered. In a smaller field, perhaps he can be taken more seriously.
Post Position 3: Sporting Chance (30-1)
Bay colt by Tiznow
Owned by Robert C. Baker and William L. Mack
Trained by D. Wayne Lukas
Ridden by Luis Contreras
Claims to fame: winner in the 2017 Hopeful Stakes
Sporting Chance’s last start was a fourth-place finish in the Pat Day Mile on Kentucky Derby day (in the same slop that plagued the big race). Lukas is certainly a trainer whose name commands respect, and while this colt does indeed have a sporting chance, that’s probably about as good as it gets.
Post Position 4: Diamond King (30-1)
Bay colt by Quality Road
Owned by Cash is King LLC, D.J. Stable LLC, LC Racing LLL
Trained by John Servis
Ridden by Javier Castellano
Claims to fame: winner in the Federico Tesio Stakes
Diamond King is well-connected to previous Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winners with trainer John Servis (Smarty Jones) as well as managing partner of Cash is King LLC (Afleet Alex). The Preakness looks like it could be a big ask for this colt, coming off of a minor stakes win.
Post Position 5: Good Magic (3-1)
Chestnut colt by Curlin
Owned by e Five Racing Thoroughbreds and Stonestreet Stables
Trained by Chad Brown
Ridden by Jose Ortiz
Claims to fame: winner in the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, second in the 2017 Champagne Stakes and the Kentucky Derby, third in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes
Good Magic looked for a few days as though he would skip the Preakness, but a rematch is on — this is probably the most likely contender to appear to have a chance at beating Justify after a gutsy Derby. The juvenile champion has the pedigree, connections and past experience to be a threat.
Post Position 6: Tenfold (20-1)
Bay colt by Curlin
Owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC
Trained by Steve Asmussen
Ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr
Claims to fame: Two allowance wins; fifth in the Arkansas Derby
The Winchell/Asmussen combination brought us Gun Runner, but Tenfold has some big shoes to fill to be a serious Preakness contender. His only graded start was a fifth place finish in the Arkansas Derby. Like Justify, he was not raced as a two-year-old.
Post Position 7: Justify (1-2)
Chestnut colt by Scat Daddy
Owned by China Horse Club International Ltd., Head of Plains Partners LLC, Starlight Racing and WinStar Farm
Trained by Bob Baffert
Ridden by Mike Smith
Claims to fame: winner of the Santa Anita Derby and the Kentucky Derby
Every superlative has been used to describe Justify: he’s undefeated, has made history as the first horse to win the Kentucky Derby without racing as a two-year-old since the early 1800s and he looks every inch an athlete at the top of his game despite the grueling conditions of his Derby win. Will the Preakness be anything more than a minor hurdle on the way to the true test of the champion? Or will Justify finally have to dig deep and show us what he’s made of?
Post Position 8: Bravazo (20-1)
Dark bay colt by Awesome Again
Owned by Calumet Farm
Trained by D. Wayne Lukas
Ridden by Luis Saez
Claims to fame: sixth in the Kentucky Derby, winner in the Risen Star Stakes, second in the Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity
Bravazo outran expectations in the Kentucky Derby, and it will be interesting to see if a smaller field and less of a crush at the start helps or hinders him. He is trainer D. Wayne Lukas’ second Preakness entry, and if there’s a man who knows something about winning Triple Crown races, it’s him.