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2015 Preakness Stakes Betting Preview | Free Prediction & Odds

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The second jewel of the Triple Crown goes this Saturday, May 16 from Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. Eight three year olds will be after the winner’s share of the $1.5 million purse when they go 1 3/8 miles on Pimilico’s dirt track.

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All eyes will be on the Bob Baffert duo of American Pharoah who won the Kentucky Derby a few weeks ago and Dortmund whose perfect career record came to an end with a third place finish in the Run for the Roses. Firing Line who finished second between Pharoah and Dortmund at Churchill Downs is also entered.

A curious decision by rival trainer Todd Pletcher to keep some serious contenders out of Saturday’s race looms large over this race.

Let’s take a look.

The 2015 Preakness Stakes Preview and Pick

1. American Pharoah Victor Espinoza Bob Baffert 4-5
2. Dortmund Martin Garcia Bob Baffert 7-2
3. Mr. Z Corey Nakatani D. Wayne Lukas 20-1
4. Danzig Moon Julien Leparoux Mark Casse 15-1
5. Tale of Verve Joel Rosario Dallas Stewart 30-1
6. Bodhisattva Trevor McCarthy Jose Corrales 20-1
7. Divining Rod Javier Castellano Arnaud Delacour 12-1
8. Firing Line Gary Stevens Simon Callaghan 4-1

The absence of Kentucky Derby contenders Materiality (sixth place) and Carpe Diem (10th place) and Triple Crown newcomers Competitive Edge and Stanford seems to pave the way for a Baffert trainee to rein supreme once again. Will anyone unseat the overwhelming favorite American Pharoah?

Is there any sleeper out there that has a chance to put an early end to Bob Baffert’s Triple Crown hopeful?

Simply put the Preakness Stakes is American Pharoah’s race to lose. The smallish field means that traffic won’t be an issue as it was in the 19-horse field of the Derby. He should benefit from a clean start and he likely won’t have to go three wide down the stretch like he did at Churchill Downs.

Pharoah will be in good position out of the gate and once in the clear it is hard to fathom anyone beating him down the stretch. American Pharoah is simply the most talented three year old on the planet – no reason to get cute in a slightly watered-down, small field.

As with American Pharoah, there is no reason to get cute when determining the second place finisher in this race. Dortmund led most of the way in the Kentucky Derby and was run down in the stretch by Firing Line. With the Preakness subtracting 1/16 of a mile, expect Dortmund to be able to hold off Firing Line in this one.

Dortmund has lost just once in seven starts – he was dominant before the Derby. He is the second best colt in the field and should reasonably get second in the Preakness.

That leaves a battle for third between Firing Line and Divining Rod. Sure Diving Rod looked great in the Coolmore Lexington Stakes but he was just OK in top company before that race. Firing Line proved that his finishing kick is one to keep an eye on with his runner-up finish in the Derby.

Firing Line has been in there with some top fields and has fared very well in all. I think he finishes directly behind Dortmund for the third time in his career and fails to catch the stellar Baffert duo en route to a third place finish.

The decision by Todd Pletcher left a big hole in the depth of the Preakness field. There are three top quality entries and five so-so combatants. In this case there is no reason to take an unwarranted gamble – the elite colts will finish 1-2-3 with American Pharoah keeping his Triple Crown hopes alive.

All eyes will be on Belmont Park in June – it should be fun!

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About DaveB

Dave B has been a Fantasy Football writer for us for 10 years. A couch potato wannabe, Dave’s insights have been read by 10’s of people for years. He hope’s for world peace + global relaxation. Enjoy and remember only smoke things that are completely natural.