New Preakness Shooters Might Have Rough Time at Pimlico

Kevin Stott

Monday, May 14, 2018 4:20 PM UTC

Monday, May. 14, 2018 4:20 PM UTC

With some Kentucky Derby participants skipping the Preakness, Saturday's second leg of the Triple Crown opens the door for some new shooters to give it a shot at Pimlico.

2018 Preakness Stakes: New Shooters and Bypassers

What looked to be a promising field of 20 horses in the Kentucky Derby got swallowed up by Mother Nature and a very solid performance by Justify and jockey Mike Smith. The mud and off track made for little passing and drama, and revealed the seemingly innocuous draw a big thing again at Churchill Downs, as the last five finishers in this year’s Run For The Roses came from the 14 through 18 posts. So the two big things, for now, heading into the second leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown -- the Preakness Stakes (G1) at historic Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland, on Saturday (5 p.m. ET; NBC) -- are if undefeated Justify can win and if trainer Chad Brown enters Derby runner-up Good Magic in the race.

On Thursday, Brown said he would make up his mind on Good Magic by Monday, saying, “I’m on the fence. It’s still under consideration.” One trainer who is electing not to send any of his four Derby Day horses (Audible, Magnum Moon, Vino Rosso, Noble Indy) to Baltimore is Todd Pletcher, who has never liked the quick two-week turnaround between the Derby and Preakness. But Pletcher will have a Preakness entrant in new shooter Pony Up (33/1 to win Preakness Stakes, Bovada), one of the three current longshots (counting non-entrant Noble Indy) in the futures market at Bovada along with Givemeaminit (33/1).

Another shooter and Preakness Stakes probable who on Thursday confirmed a run at Pimlico was Diamond King (14/1), a 3-year-old trained by John Servis and a horse who earned an automatic spot in the Preakness by winning the Federico Tesio Stakes on April 21 at Laurel Park in Laurel, Maryland. And 82-year-old trainer D. Wayne Lukas will have two 3-year-olds in this Preakness -- Bravazo (sixth place in the Kentucky Derby) and Sporting Chance, with jockeys Luis Contreras aboard the former and Luis Saez on the latter.

Let’s look at current futures odds for the 143rd Run For The Black-Eyed Susans along with thumbnail sketches of the shooters — 3-year-olds who either didn’t qualify or chose to bypass the Derby, as well as two who are bypassing the Preakness who have committed to the race and one future shooter (Telekinesis) who hasn’t and might not. Entrants for the Preakness will be taken on Wednesday.

Preakness Stakes Futures Odds

Justify +250
Good Magic +350
Bolt d’Oro +1000
Diamond King +1400
Quip +1600
Bravazo +2000
Telekinesis +2000
Sporting Chance +2200
Lone Sailor +2500
Tenfold +2500
Givemeaminit +3300
Noble Indy +3300
Pony Up +3300

Quip

Tampa Bay Derby winner Quip (3-1-0 in 5 lifetime starts; 1-1-0 in 2018) was held out of the Kentucky Derby with the expressed intent of running in this race by trainer Rodolphe Brissett and part-owners WinStar Farm (along with China Horse Club and SF Racing), so this Kentucky-bred colt will finally get his big chance Saturday although WinStar Farm will probably be pulling more for Justify to win at Pimlico. Florent Geroux will be jockeying Quip (Top Equibase Speed Figure: 99), who finished second behind Magnum Moon in the Arkansas Derby.

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Sporting Chance

Sporting Chance (2-1-1 in 7 lifetime starts; 1-0-1 in 2018) will be a hard one to back at the betting windows, with drifting issues (Blue Grass Stakes) and a below-average showing (4th place) in the slop in the Pat Day Mile Stakes (G3). But with Luis Contreras in the saddle, some might back this Kentucky-bred shooter or use him in Preakness Day exotics with many race book players possibly starting off with Justify-Good Magic win-place combinations (should Good Magic be entered). Expect exacta, trifecta, superfecta and other exotic payouts to be much greater on Saturday should Good Magic not participate. Sporting Chance has a top Equibase Speed Figure is 100 and he is the son of Tiznow.

Tenfold

Tenfold (2-0-0 in 3 lifetime starts, all in 2018) finished 5th in the Arkansas Derby in April but this lightly raced brown colt started off with 2 wins in 2017 as a 2-year-old and can’t just be tossed out in the Preakness. Trainer Steve Asmussen has high hopes for this 3-year-old shooter and son of Curlin who is owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC and currently priced at healthy 25/1 odds to win at Pimlico on Saturday. Despite the price, Tenfold (Top Equibase Speed Figure: 100) could surprise.

Diamond King

Diamond King (4-1-1 in 6 lifetime starts; 0-0-1 in 2018) won the Federico Tesio Stakes to gain an automatic berth into this race but was also listed as a probable for the Peter Pan Stakes (G3) last weekend with trainer john Servis confirming that the multiple stakes winner and son of Quality Road would indeed be in The Old Line State. “It looks like we’re heading to the Preakness,” he said of his bay colt. “It’s always exciting to be able to come back and be a part of it. He didn’t get a chance to run in the Derby because he didn’t have the points, but the winner was very impressive. I’m excited about it.” Servis reportedly is planning on shipping Diamond King to Baltimore on Friday, meaning only one day to adjust, but still enough time in the big scheme of things. Javier Castellano is his jockey and his Top Equibase Speed Figure is 103. Ride, route and draw depending, this beautiful bay-colored colt could test Justify.

Pony Up

Trained by Todd Pletcher and owned and bred by Calumet Farm, Kentucky-bred Pony Up (1-4-1 in 7 lifetime starts; 0-2-1 in 2018) will give it a go in the 9½-furlong Preakness, and at longshot 33/1 odds (futures), would surely be a surprise winner although he does have an impressive 108 Top Equibase Speed Figure. Pony Up, who has Seattle Slew and AP Indy in his bloodline, has earned $87,280 this calendar year and $133,780 in his lifetime.

Givemeaminit

On Friday, Givemeaminit (1-2-2 in 10 lifetime starts; 1-0-1 in 4 Starts in 2018) trainer Dallas Stewart decided he would be bypassing the Preakness in favor of the Woody Stephens Stakes (G2), a 7-furlong race on the undercard at Belmont Park on June 9 for the now-former Preakness longshot. Givemeaminit has already gone into the starting gates 10 times in his two years of serious racing for owners Valene Farms LLC, and it took this Louisiana-bred horse 7 races to finally break his maiden. With likely jockey Corey Lanerie aboard, Givemeaminit would have had a chance to become the 8th 2-year-old male champion to end up winning the Preakness since the advent of the Eclipse Awards in 1971.

Telekinesis

Bay colt Telekinesis (1-1-1 in 3 lifetime starts, all in 2018) finished 2nd behind My Boy Jack, expected to skip the Preakness in favor of the Belmont Stakes (June 9), in the Lexington Stakes (G3) at Keeneland, and trainer Mark Casse was aiming not to enter him (or any other horse) at Pimlico although nothing was set in stone, although Bovada had 20/1 odds up on him (as well as odds on Noble Indy) in its futures book, so bettor beware.

Restoring Hope

Restoring Hope (1-1-2 in 5 lifetime starts; 1-0-1 in 3 starts in 2018) is a Kentucky-bred shooter trained by Bob Baffert and owned by Gary and Mary West who made his stakes debut in the Wood Memorial (G2) at Aqueduct this spring, finishing 3rd behind Kentucky Derby horses Vino Rosso and Enticed. With jockey Mike Smith committed to ride on Justify at Pimlico, Baffert may turn to Flavien Prat (who rode Restoring Hope in the Wood) to jockey this colt who finished in a disappointing 12th place (going off at (9/2 odds) in the Pat Day Mile Stakes in a 1-mile race at Churchill Downs won by Funny Duck (30/1). Perhaps this thoroughbred would be more aptly named with a question mark after the word “Hope” in his name? Best of Luck with a capital "L" if you choose to back Restoring Hope in this one in what may end up being a career-defining race.

Preakness Stakes Shooter To Win Futures Pick: Quip 16/1 (Bovada)

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