1. Orb (Malibu Moon) – Tabasco Cat is the only horse
in the last 41 years to win the Preakness Stakes from post one and Orb
likes to make wide, sweeping moves. If he is a legit Triple Crown threat
the inside post will not bother him and Rosario continues to ride
great. I have always liked Shug’s colt but he won’t offer any value in
2. Goldencents (Into Mischief) – SA Derby winner
hated the Derby wet track and the pace scenario did not help his cause.
He is a quality speed horse but needs everything to go his way to
compete vs. these at this distance. Krigger might send him and play
catch me if you can.
3. Titletown Five (Tiznow) – He finished in front
of Orb in a Saratoga maiden race last summer. He has raw talent but is
best as a sprinter at this stage. Interesting that patient rider
Leparoux takes over. They are trying to get him to relax.
4. Departing (War Front) – Playing the part of Red
Bullet is Departing and taking over the role of Fusaichi Pegasus is Orb.
At least that is what trainer Al Stall Jr. is hoping. He is 4-for-5
lifetime and the LA Derby was a productive prep. He did not beat much in
the Illinois Derby but looked good doing it.
5. Mylute (Midnight Lute) – He is winless in seven
stakes outings but is usually in the hunt. Napravnik was the queen of
Maryland racing when she rode at Laurel/Pimlico and she really wants to
win the Preakness.
6. Oxbow (Awesome Again) – Lukas trainee was done in
by the quick Derby splits but hung in there to finish a fine 6th. His
main problem is that he pulled off wire jobs in both career wins but is
not quick enough to grab the early lead in the Preakness.
7. Will Take Charge (Unbridled’s Song) – Smarty
Jones/Rebel winner finished a troubled 8th in the Derby. He is a bit
interesting if he finds clear sailing under Mike Smith but is not fast
enough and has yet to win beyond a mile and a sixteenth.
8. Govenor Charlie (Midnight Lute) – G3 Sunland
Derby hero is lightly raced and on the improve. He lacks seasoning and
has recovered from the minor hind foot issue that forced him to miss the
Derby. Look for him to make some noise later this year.
9. Itsmyluckyday (Lawyer Ron) – Eddie Plesa’s colt
got the best of the draw based on his preferred outside stalk and pounce
style. The Florida Derby runner-up flopped in the Derby and may have
peaked in January. Orb beat him in his last pair.