After a sloppy track greatly influenced the Kentucky Derby, we could be in for more of the same with a chance of rain in the forecast for the 2013 Preakness Stakes
According to weather.com as of 1:15 p.m ET on Monday morning, there's a 30 percent chance of rain with isolated thunderstorms from Friday through Sunday and a slight chance of rain earlier in the week.
The biggest question you need to be asking yourself at this point in time is this: Is your favored horse a mudder?
Should the track at Pimlico turn into a muddy mess, you can be sure it'll affect every horse one way or another. With that in mind, here's a look at what you can expect from the top horses in the field in such an event.
Note: Normandy Invasion (6-1 odds) was scratched after trainer Chad Brown and owner Rick Porter decided to rest the horse for the Belmont Stakes (h/t AP, via SI.com).
Orb: 7-5 Odds to Win
If you watched the Kentucky Derby, then you know Orb is a mudder.
Ridden by jockey Joel Rosario, Orb put together a performance for the ages on a sloppy track at Churchill Downs. He was at the back of the pack rounding the final turn when Rosario kicked him into high gear, and the rest is history.
This horse loves the slop. He eats it up, in the immortal words of Cosmo Kramer.
If the track is soaking wet at Pimlico, you can be sure Orb won't have any problems dealing with it and given his performance at the Derby, he'll be even more highly favored to win.
Departing: 7-2 Odds to Win
Departing is a speedy gelding with excellent pedigree. The son of War Front and the third foal out of Leave, he descends from a long line of front-running sprinters.
Departing has won four of the five races he's entered. He most recently won the Illinois Derby to qualify for the Preakness, and his only loss came at the Louisiana Derby when he came in third place behind Revolutionary and Mylute—both strong contestants at the Kentucky Derby.
This horse has never raced in muddy conditions, however.
At this point, if the weather doesn't cooperate and the track ends up turning into a mud pit, bettors would be smart to avoid putting a lot of money on Departed.
Goldencents: 7-1 Odds to Win
A 17th-place finish at the Derby proves Goldencents isn't a mudder. This horse is extremely fast on dry tracks, but he struggled to keep his stamina in the first leg of the Triple Crown.
Was Goldencents' horrible run at the Derby proof he'll never be a mudder?
Leandro Mora, an assistant trainer to Doug O'Neill, spoke with reporters about Goldencents' unexpected finish at the Derby, via horseracingnation.com:
He came back A-OK. With all the rain and mud, let’s just say the track was not on our side. (Goldencents) never had to face conditions like that in California. I thought (jockey) Kevin (Krigger) did a great job protecting him...he saw it was hopeless, he eased him up the last part of the race. The track condition made a big difference.
If the track is dry, then Goldencents will likely be one of the top finishers—if not the winner.
If the track is wet, however, Goldencents will struggle once again.
Note: All betting odds courtesy of Bodog.
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