- Epicenter is a 6-5 morning line favorite in the 147th running of the Preakness Stakes.
- Epicenter was a 4-1 favorite in the Kentucky Derby finishing second behind shock winner Rich Strike.
- The Preakness Stakes is the 13th race on a 14 race card at Baltimore’s Pimlico Race Course this Saturday.
Epicenter is now 2 for 2 in Triple Crown races–at least in being the morning line favorite in the Kentucky Derby and now the Preakness Stakes. Pimlico oddsmaker Keith Feustle installed Epicenter as a 6-5 favorite in Saturday’s 147th running of the Preakness Stakes. The Grade 1, $1.5 million USD race will cover 1 3/16 miles on the dirt track at Pimlico. A field of nine will compete in the Preakness which should present a completely different race experience than the 20 horse stampede that contested the Kentucky Derby despite the similar distance.
Joel Rosario will once again ride Epicenter for trainer Steve Asmussen. Epicenter finished second in the Kentucky Derby, caught at the wire by 80-1 longshot Rich Strike. Epicenter will break from post position 8. Next up on the odds board is Chad Brown’s Early Voting at 7-2 starting from post position 5. Early Voting skipped the Kentucky Derby after finishing second in the G2 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct. The lightly raced colt won his only other starts last December in a MSW at Aqueduct and in the Grade 3 Withers Stakes. At 9-2 is Kentucky Oaks winner Secret Oath with Luis Saez aboard who will try to become the seventh filly to win the Preakness Stakes. Keep in mind that as a female horse racing against males she’ll carry 121 pounds while the rest of the field will carry 126 pounds.
A late addition to the field is Fenwick, trained by Kevin McKathan. Sired by Curlin, Fenwick is coming off a disappointing 11th place finish in the Blue Grass stakes where he put up an ugly 63 Beyer Speed figure. In his previous start, we won a MSW at Tampa Bay Downs in impressive fashion with a 90 Beyer. Flourant Geroux gets the mount on the long shot of the Preakness field at 50-1. His owners suggest that was due to a bad ride though prior to his maiden victory there was nothing to suggest that he’s capable of a win here. Un Ojo had been considered for the Preakness but was a late scratch due to a foot bruise–the same injury that kept him out of the Kentucky Derby.
Also in the field is Creative Minister, who was supplemented by his owners to the tune of $150,000. His connections declined to nominate him for the Triple Crown races by the first deadline (January) where he could have become eligible for $600. He finished second in his debut race at which point his connections could have nominated him prior to a second deadline for $6,000. Hindsight is 20/20, of course, but there was nothing at that time that suggested he was ready for the challenge. He’s developed quickly since then, winning his last two races including an optional claiming win at Churchill Downs on the Kentucky Derby undercard. That performance complete with a 90 Beyer against a solid field is what motivated his owners to reach for the wallet and drop some serious cash to get him in the race.
Here’s the full field rundown: