On Saturday, May 21, Epicenter hopes to parlay a second-place in the Kentucky Derby into a first-place finish in the Preakness Stakes. Epicenter’s top competition should come from Kentucky Oaks winner Secret Oath. As we head into Preakness week, let’s check out an early look at the potential Preakness field so you can bet against the Preakness Stakes Odds.
Early Look at the Potential Preakness Stakes Field | Horse Racing Odds & Picks
2022 Preakness Stakes
- When: Saturday, May 21
- Where: Pimlico Race Course
- TV/Streaming: NBC / Peacock
The Kentucky Derby runner-up ran the best race. The Steve Asmussen trainee wanted to look Zandon in the eye and beat that one into submission, which Epicenter did.
Unfortunately, by the time Epicenter saw Rich Strike running up the rail, it was too late. If you watch the Derby finish, you’ll notice Epicenter kick it into gear once he sees Rich Strike. Any odds at 2/1, maybe 8/5, make this guy the play.
Early action has sent the Oaks winner to 5/2. At those odds, we may have pass. She’s brilliant, yes, but in her first race versus the dudes, the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, she didn’t run nearly as well.
So either she ran timid or she wasn’t feeling good. Either way, she’ll have to run the best race of her career to beat Epicenter. Right now, the odds make her a play against.
He’s got the ability to win the second jewel. The knocks? Yes, Rombauer won the Preakness after not racing in the Kentucky Derby.
But it rarely happens that a horse wins the Pimlico after not racing at Churchill. Also, Armagnac will make it difficult for Early Voting to wire this field.
He closed well, and he had to go wide. But they walked home the final quarter-mile. So what are the excuses after hanging back near Rich Strike, but not catching up to the top three?
The Saffie Joseph Jr. trained runner must improve leaps and bounds to hit the board in this race. Skippylongstocking may have the talent. But it’s hard to play a Saffie horse running in a graded race outside of Gulfstream Park.
Joseph does well with horses at Gulfstream. Not so well when he ships. One of the reasons is that his ponies get very comfortable in their surroundings. Also, Skippy may not appreciate Pimlico’s sharp turns.
In his first two tries versus graded company, Armagnac failed big time. The Tim Yakteen trainee figures to be a part of the pace, probably dueling on the front end, before folding in the lane.
The Quality Road sired runner looks like a pace setter. Anything more than that would be a surprise.
Sired by Giant’s Causeway and from a Tapit broodmare, Creative Minister has a chance. The Beyer Figure in the impressive allowance win on the Derby undercard wasn’t great, only a 92, but trainer Kenny McPeek and owners Fern Circle Stables are ponying up $150,000 to run in the Preakness.
McPeek believes this horse can win the Preakness and the Belmont. We should consider Creative Minister a serious longshot.
Doug O’Neill is an awesome trainer. He’s won the Preakness before, but it’s impossible to endorse Happy Jack.
While Mo Donegal and Rich Strike, the two horses ahead of Happy Jack in the Derby, made excellent runs to improve their position, Rich Strike won and Mo Donegal finished fifth after having to go ten wide, Happy Jack finished 14th.
So if the O’Neill runner couldn’t finish in the top four after chasing a blazing pace, what will happen when he chases a slower pace in the Preakness? Not anything good.
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