The 2014 Preakness Stakes is one of the biggest horse races of the year, and the second leg of the Triple Crown is garnering attention from the mainstream media as the post positions and odds are announced.
All eyes are on Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome as he prepares to attempt history at Pimlico Race Course. The Preakness will be the horse’s chance to take one step closer to Triple Crown history.
Here are the odds for the 2014 Preakness Stakes, the vital viewing information, post positions and a preview of the horse to watch.
Where: Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore, Maryland
When: Saturday, May 17
Post Time: 6:18 p.m. ET
TV: NBC (coverage begins at 4:30 p.m. ET)
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
|Post||Horse||Jockey||Odds to Win|
|1||Dynamic Impact||Miguel Mena||12-1|
|2||General A Rod||Javier Castellano||15-1|
|3||California Chrome||Victor Espinoza||3-5|
|4||Ring Weekend||Alan Garcia||20-1|
|6||Ria Antonia||Calvin Borel||30-1|
|7||Kid Cruz||Julian Pimentel||20-1|
|8||Social Inclusion||Luis Contreras||5-1|
|9||Pablo Del Monte||Jeffrey Sanchez||20-1|
|10||Ride on Curlin||Joel Rosario||10-1|
Horse to Watch: California Chrome
Heading into Saturday's Preakness Stakes, there is no horse in the world right now with more pressure on his shoulders than California Chrome.
Will California Chrome win the Preakness Stakes?
With five straight victories including the 2014 Kentucky Derby—California Chrome also won at the Santa Anita Derby, San Felipe Stakes, California Cup Derby and King Glorious Stakes—few horses have ever carried this momentum into the Preakness Stakes.
Affirmed was the last horse to win the vaunted Triple Crown in 1978, but it’s worth noting that California Chrome is related to Seattle Slew, the previous Triple Crown winner in 1977. If pedigree tells us anything, California Chrome will be vying for the win.
Even skeptics are starting to hop on the bandwagon, and rival trainer Dale Romans told Tim Sullivan of USA Today about how he perceived California Chrome and how the horse proved him wrong:
I didn't think that California Chrome had any chance going into this race. And I was very, very wrong. Whether the crop's a good crop or not, that's a special horse. ... I was a very big skeptic. I threw him out of all my tickets in every spot. I didn't think he fit the profile to win the Derby. I'm very impressed (by) the way he came into it, the way he looked, the way he was prepared and the way he ran.
While Chrome has run well, there are a few concerns. As trainer Art Sherman pointed out to Horse Racing TV’s official Twitter account, the field for the Preakness will be much faster:
Sherman said Preakness field differs on paper from Derby as there appears to be more speed. Said how first 70 yards of race unfolds is key.— HRTV (@HRTVinsider) May 14, 2014
According to Tim Layden of Sports Illustrated, the fast pace of the challengers could be an issue for California Chrome after his performance at Churchill Downs:
California Chrome's slow Derby may be indicator of weak class of 3yos or small chance at Triple Crown. But he still won the Derby.— Tim Layden (@SITimLayden) May 7, 2014
The horse is fortunate to have a great jockey on his back like Victor Espinoza. With a budding relationship between the jockey and the horse, the duo has managed traffic well and been strong out of the gate.
With California Chrome drawing the No. 3 post, the horse must get out of the gates fast and get to the inside lane. If Espinoza gets stuck in traffic, expect him to move to the outside and close the gap around the final turn.
As one of the strongest horses late in races, California Chrome can win from the lead or running through the pack for a last-second victory. Either way, he will be Belmont bound.
Predicted Finish: 2014 Preakness Stakes Winner
*Stats via HorseRacingNation.com.