Second Jewel Of The Triple Crown
The Triple Crown trail takes sports fans to Baltimore, Md., two weeks after the pandemonium of the Kentucky Derby.
The Derby is held every year on the first Saturday in May. So, the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course is contested about mid-month.
The field for the second jewel of the Triple Crown will be much smaller than the 20 three-year-old thoroughbreds who went to war in the Run for the Roses. Those seeking racing glory will leave Churchill Downs and head about 600 miles east to Pimlico for what’s also called the Run for the Black-Eyed Susans.
First held in 1873, the Preakness was named by a former Maryland governor after a winning colt at Pimlico. Attendance for this major racing event ranks second in North America, only surpassed by the Derby.
Secretariat holds the Preakness track record of 1:53, which he set in 1973. And, like the Derby, all of the horses will carry 126 pounds in the $1.5-million event — the shortest of the three Triple Crown races at 1 3/16 miles, about 100 yards less than the Derby.
Betting On The Run For Black-Eyed Susans
The Preakness does not draw the betting handle like the Derby since the field is much smaller. The number of starters is restricted to 14 horses, although fewer normally enter the starting gate.
In 2017, 10 rivals contested the race with Cloud Computing coming out on top. In 2015, fans watched Kentucky Derby winner American Pharoah beat seven opponents.
Pimlico isn’t the only site for wagering. There are many off-track venues throughout the U.S., Las Vegas sports books — like the Bellagio and Palazzo — or online gaming sites such as Bovada, TopBet or Betonline.
These venues all offer similar options for wagering on this historic race.
Win, place or show
These are common bets to place on any horse race. A win bet is exactly that — pick the winner of the race. To cash a place ticket, your horse must finish first or second. To cash a show ticket, your horse must finish first, second or third. The payoffs on winning tickets are based on a $2 bet.
In 2014, another Kentucky Derby champion, California Chrome, went off at 1-2 in the Preakness. That means a $1 profit was made on every $2 bet on the overwhelming favorite that day. For example, on a $200 bet on California Chrome, the winning ticket returned $300 ($200 plus $100 profit).
Exacta, trifecta and superfecta
These betting options are called “exotics.” A bettor is attempting to pick the exact order of finish of multiple horses. In an exacta, you must pick the exact order of finish of the first two horses. In a trifecta, it’s the exact order of finish of the first three horses. With a superfecta, it’s the exact order of finish of the first four horses.
In 2017, the $2 exacta of Cloud Computing and Classic Empire (2-5) returned $98.40. The $2 superfecta of 2-5-8-9 returned more than $16,300.
Daily double and Pick 3
A daily double is a bet where you have to pick the winner of two separate races. The Preakness is often coupled with the race before or after it. A Pick 3 is a bet where you have the pick the winner of three consecutive races.
How To Pick A Winner for the Preakness
The program for the Preakness Stakes will list the horses from No. 1 on out based on the post position draw earlier in the week.
Beside each horse’s name are the pedigree, owner, breeder, trainer and jockey. The information also includes past performance charts, won/loss records and career earnings.
Some important angles to look for when trying to pick the winner include: top jockey, top trainer, recent performances, post position and track condition. The colt’s history at Pimlico should also be a consideration.
If all else fails, you can always go with your lucky number or the name that appeals to you the most.
Preakness Betting Trends From The Past
Four favorites have won the Preakness in the last 10 years, which is below the historical average — 72 out of 142 (50.7%).
The public’s choice has won the the Preakness more often than the Derby (35.7%) and Belmont (42.1%).
The betting favorite has won 13 of the last 33 editions of the race. The second betting choice has won the race nine times. That means one of the two top picks has won 22 of the last 33 races (66.7%).
Legendary trainer Bob Baffert has won the second jewel of the Triple Crown six times. R. Wyndham Walden holds the record at seven.
Three active jockeys have won the Preakness three times — Kent Desormeaux, Gary Stevens and Victor Espinoza.