The 138th Preakness Stakes features a small nine-horse field that will make the race unpredictable and exciting to watch.
It's a huge change from the huge field at the Kentucky Derby, which featured 19 horses.
Without a crowded track, this race is one that could certainly be won by a horse that isn't being considered as one of the favorites.
Here's a quick look at the race's details, along with post positions, jockeys, trainers and the latest odds for each horse.
Where: Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, Md.
When: Saturday, May 18, at 6:20 p.m. ET
Post Time: 6:20 p.m. ET
Purse: $1 million
Television: NBC Sports Network
2013 Preakness Stakes Layout
|1||Orb||Joel Rosario||Claude McGaughey||1-1|
|2||Goldencents||Kevin Krigger||Doug O'Neill||8-1|
|3||Titletown Five||Julien Leparoux ||D. Wayne Lukas||30-1|
|4||Departing||Brian Hernandez Jr.||Albert M. Stall Jr.||5-1|
|5||Mylute||Rosie Napravnik||Tom Amoss||8-1|
|6||Oxbow||Gary Stevens||D. Wayne Lukas||15-1|
|7||Will Take Charge||Mike Smith||D. Wayne Lukas||12-1|
|8||Govenor Charlie||Martin Garcia||Bob Baffert||10-1|
|9||Itsmyluckyday||John Velazquez||Eddie Plesa Jr. ||12-1|
* Current odds can be found at horseracingnation.com.
Now it's time to take a look at some horses you may not know much about, since they aren't being given much of a chance to win by oddsmakers.
Titletown Five: Post No. 3 (30-1 Odds)
Owned by former Green Bay Packers greats and Hall of Famers Paul Hornung and Willie Davis, Titletown Five is the horse least expected to win this year's Preakness.
The only race this horse has ever won was its Maiden Special Weight. It took four attempts to finally accomplish this feat, and Titletown Five hasn't done anything since to suggest he'll win on Saturday.
Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas knows his horses, however, and he's not so sure Titletown Five won't shock the world this weekend, according to Alicia Wincze Hughes of herald-leader.com:
His last two races they put him into the race too much...I'd like to see him relax about 3-4 lengths off (the pace). I don't think he'll be on the lead and I really don't want him on the lead, either...He's a more talented horse than you people realize.
With long-shot odds like Titletown Five is being given, it might be a good idea to consider this horse when you place your bets on Saturday.
Oxbow: Post No. 6 (15-1 Odds)
Oxbow landed a potentially favorable post position at the No. 6 spot. According to HRTV on Twitter, horses starting from this post have won more races than any other spot since 1909:
Oxbow's post 6 has yielded the most Preakness winners -- 15 -- since 1909.— HRTV (@HRTVinsider) May 15, 2013
Compared to some of the other horses in the field, Oxbow is a veteran on the track. With 10 career starts, Oxbow has only won two races—one of which was his Maiden Special Weight.
Since finishing in first place at the LeComte Stakes (Grade 3) back in January, this horse has only placed once in four races. That said, a respectable sixth-place finish at the Kentucky Derby showed this horse is capable of running well on a long track.
Still, expectations should be tempered by anyone believing Oxbow has a legitimate chance to win the race.
Itsmyluckyday: Post No. 9 (12-1 Odds)
Another veteran, Itsmyluckyday is a horse that has been up and down throughout its career.
Before finishing in 15th place at the Kentucky Derby (a huge disappointment), Itsmyluckyday had won two of three races in 2013 and finished in second place in the other. In 11 career starts, this horse has finished in first place five times and in the money a total of eight times.
One major change from the Derby to the Preakness is the fact that jockey Elvis Trujillo will be replaced by Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez, per DRF's Mike Welsch:
Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. just confirms John Velazquez to ride Itsmyluckyday in the Preakness.#Preakness— Mike Welsch (@DRFWelsch) May 7, 2013
A big reason why Itsmyluckyday finished so poorly at the Derby stems from the fact that he got caught on the outside early, which caused Trujillo to push the horse early. Not surprisingly, Itsmyluckyday burned out and didn't finish strong.
Velazquez will be able to take a different approach with a small field, and it shouldn't be a surprise to see Itsmyluckyday show on Saturday—if not better.
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