Preakness 2020 Contenders: Horses and Jockeys with Best Chance at Pimlico

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistOctober 2, 2020

Jockey John Velazquez riding Authentic, second right, heads to the finish line ahead of Jockey Manny Franco riding Tiz the Law to win the 146th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

Authentic has the perfect team behind him to capture the 2020 Preakness Stakes

The Kentucky Derby winner has one of the best jockeys in the field in John Velazquez and is trained by the legendary Bob Baffert. 

Baffert has two horses entered in the field at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. Thousand Words is the other, and he also has an experienced jockey aboard in Florent Geroux. 

While the Baffert-trained horses should be in contention Saturday, there is another horse/jockey combination that could spoil the party for Authentic and Thousand Words.


Horses and Jockeys with Best Chance to Win Preakness

Authentic (John Velazquez)

Authentic was the most dominant horse at the Kentucky Derby, as he was at the front of the field for the majority of the race. If he delivers a similar performance Saturday, he could hand Velazquez his first victory at the Preakness Stakes. 

Velazquez is the most successful Triple Crown jockey in the field with three Kentucky Derby and two Belmont Stakes victories. In his last few Preakness starts, Velazquez has been unlucky with his finishing positions and a did-not-finish from Bodexpress in 2019. 

The last top-three Preakness finish from Velazquez occurred in 2013, when he took second aboard Itsmyluckyday. 

Despite the lack of results at Pimlico, Velazquez has arguably the best horse in the field to work with and is by far the most experienced jockey in the field.

That should lead to Authentic being at, or near, the front of the pack with a chance to cash in on his favorite status. 


Swiss Skydiver (Robby Albarado)

The lone filly in the 11-horse field may have an advantage on the other favorites because of her jockey's experience at Pimlico.

Robby Albarado holds the edge over Velazquez in Preakness victories, as he took first with Curlin in 2007. He won that race out of the fourth post position, which is where Swiss Skydiver is set to begin Saturday. 

In her last race against three-year-old males, Swiss Skydiver went head-to-head with Art Collector at the Blue Grass Stakes and took second.

Art Collector won the race at Keeneland, but the respectable second-place finish could indicate the level of success Swiss Skydiver could have at Pimlico.

Swiss Skydiver will have a tough task out of the gates since she starts between Art Collector and Thousand Words, but Albarado does have the experience to guide her through a difficult race.


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Statistics obtained from HorseRacingNation.com