Preakness Stakes

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Otherwise known as the “The Run for the Black-Eyed Susans”, the Preakness Stakes is the second leg of the American Triple Crown of racing and takes place on the third Saturday of May at Pimlico Race Course.

The race is now in its 143rd year and due to its position in the racing calendar almost always features the Kentucky Derby winner with owners and trainers dreaming of doing what so few have achieved – winning the Triple Crown.

The Triple Crown

Many Kentucky Derby winners, for one reason or another, may not be considered potential Triple Crown winners while by the time we get to the Belmont Stakes in June we have already discovered that there will be no winner to emulate the likes of Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Affirmed or the latest champ American Pharoah.

In the Preakness though, there is still a huge buzz that this could be the year with all eyes on the winner from Churchill Downs in expectation of another championship performance from what is always regarded by this stage as one of the best middle distance three-year-olds in the world.

The Preakness Stakes has that unique buzz that comes with being the middle leg of a huge championship with everyone hoping the Kentucky Derby winner can do it again round Pimlico – unless you have bet something else of course!

Preakness Conditions

One of the key things any horse looking to land the Triple Crown needs to have is versatility. Although the biggest difference comes during the mile-and-a-half stamina test that is the Belmont Stakes, many are caught out between Kentucky and Maryland due to the subtle change in race conditions from the 10 furlongs of the Derby to the 9.5 furlongs here.

A good gate position and plenty of speed are needed to gain good early position in this race and even with those things achieved; hanging on from the front with that bit of stamina which will be needed later on at Belmont can eventually bring success at Pimlico.

Despite having a potentially long a fruitful career to come, the best horses are judged on their three-year-old season and only the classic generation may enter the Preakness.

Real champions such as Secretariat, Seattle Slew, Affirmed, Point Given, Bernardini, Curlin, California Chrome and American Pharoah have made use of these various attributes and taken this race to put their mark on the sport and take their place among the greats of racing.

Pimlico Race Course

One of the great things about horse racing is versatility so, while the Breeders Cup moves to a different track every year and that has its own charm, races like the Pegasus World Cup or Preakness maintain a sense of place with Pimlico always its home.

The course has the capacity to hold over 120,000 people and has a place in American sporting folklore because of this race, yet the Preakness remains the track’s only Grade One contest and so is the feather in the cap of the track administrators.

Racing is different everywhere and in the case of Pimlico on Preakness day a huge TV audience can witness the crowd singing “Maryland, My Maryland” after the horses are called to post.

Tradition is a huge thing in racing so as well as the singing and the draping of the winner in the yellow flowers made to recreate the appearance of the black-eyed Susan, as soon as the race result is made official a painter will climb to the top of the Old Clubhouse cupola to apply the colours of the winning owner to the horse atop the weather vane.

How To Bet The Preakness Stakes

Checking the race history for trends in the past winners of the Preakness, as well as studying current form and checking the latest odds are paramount in attempting to bet the winner of this race and that can all be done by visiting right here at TVG.com.

As a bettor, you should never go into any big race under informed so make sure you check back here at race time for all the latest information regarding one of America’s biggest races.

Don’t Miss The Preakness Action

Remember to get your up to date Preakness information here at TVG where we will have up to date analysis from our experts right up to post time. Check out the history of the Preakness Stakes.

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