Preakness 2014: Does Social Inclusion Need a Speed Friendly Pimlico?

May 09, 2014 08:56am
Social Inclusion Pimlico 615 X 400
Photo: Gary Quill

Less than three months ago, an unraced 3-year-old named Social Inclusion made his career debut. It was a smashing one as he won by 7½ lengths. Eighteen days later he became the Derby buzz horse when he crashed Honor Code’s 3-year-old debut party, breaking the track record with a gate to wire victory in in allowance event at Gulfstream Park.

Then things got a little crazy. Based on the media attention and rumors about a $15 million offer for the son of Pioneerof the Nile, one would have thought the horse racing world had witnessed the second coming of Secretariat.

Without a deal, the colt was vanned to Aqueduct to run in the G1 Wood Memorial, needing a top 2 finish to earn enough points to safely get in the Kentucky Derby. Unfortunately, after leading every step of the way, Wicked Strong surged passed him in the final 100 yards and Samraat caught him with the last jump at the wire to deny him second.

As game as the Wood Memorial effort was, it left Social Inclusion a couple spots away from a guaranteed spot in the Derby starting gate. Instead of holding onto the slim hope that a few defections from the Derby could get him in, the connections decided to stay in south Florida and prepare for the 2014 Preakness Stakes.

The question marks for Social Inclusion are… will the Pimlico dirt surface be as speed friendly as Gulfstream Park? Can he carry that speed for 1 3/16 miles? Can/will he rate off the pace since there will be plenty of other early speed coming from Bayern, Pablo del Monte and Ring Weekend?

Social Inclusion passed my test this morning galloping around the Pimlico dirt oval to become familiar with the surroundings.


Recapping previous posted selections from Thursday, May 8th at Pimlico, had 6 winners from 9 races, (2 Top Selections; payoffs in BOLD) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $3.60 (1st race), $5.60 (3rd), $2.80 (5th), $6.00 (6th), $9.80 (7th) and $4.40 (8th).

The BEST BET of the Day (20: 5-7-5) War Ready (9th race: 7-2 M/L; 4-1 PT) outrun early made up a ton of ground in the lane but could only prove to be second best, coming up a couple lengths short of the winner to return $5.40 to PLACE and $4.20 to SHOW.

The LONGSHOT PICK (21: 5-5-0) Pennie My Love (3rd race: 10-1 M/L; 16-1 PT) broke alertly and challenged for the early lead into the turn, settled behind the eventual winner around the turn but faded quickly in the final furlong to finish a distant 8th.

FYI – the BEST BET of the Day selection will never be a M/L favorite and the LONGSHOT PICK will simply be the runner having the highest M/L odds among my top picks for an entire card.

PLEASE NOTE: Statistics provided for the BEST BET and LONGSHOT PICK in parentheses represent the Number of Picks: Wins-Places-Shows. For example, the BEST BET (10: 1-2-3) was picked 10 times resulting in 1 winner, 2 places and 3 shows. In the past, I would reset these numbers at the start of each meet. For 2014, I reset these numbers on Jan. 1st in order to chart results on a yearly basis.

Selections for Friday, May 9th at Pimlico Race Course posted below reflect early scratches.

1st race – $5,000 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles
#7 – Sister Sharon (2-1)
#3 – Mad Magic (1-1)
#4 – Go the Distance (15-1)

2nd race – $5,000 Claiming N2L for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#8 – Vinoteca (9-2)  $$$ LONGSHOT PLAY $$$
#6 – Elbertini (7-5)
#3 – Lady At Heart (3-1)

3rd race – $25,000 Maiden Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles on TURF
#6 – Maria’s Song (7-2)
#8 – How Come (5-2)
#5 – She’s Curly (10-1)

4th race – $25,000 Starter Allowance for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#4 – Deputy Fancy (5-2)
#7 – Bonnie Lass (4-1)
#3 – Read All About It (6-1)

10 cent Jackpot Pick-5 Carryover: $100,618.

5th race – $12,500 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 5 furlongs on TURF
#6 – Classe Signora (4-1)  *** BEST BET ***
#9 – Sydney Speaks (3-1)
#2 – Miss Hard Ten (6-1)

6th race – $15,000 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#6 – Senora de Lujan (3-1)
#4 – Stone of Scone (8-1)
#5 – I’m Smokin Hot (5-2)

7th race – $25,000 Starter Allowance for 3 y.o. and up – 1 mile on TURF
#3 – East of Danzig (4-1)
#2 – Saint Pierre (5-2)
#6 – Capital Fellow (7-5)

8th race – $42,000 Allowance N1X for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#6 – Miss Moonshine (6-5)
#3 – Before You Know It (9-2)
#5 – My T Swift (5-2)

9th race – $25,000 Claiming N2L for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles on TURF
#2 – Calesita Bay (6-1)
#1 – English Sarah (8-1)
#6 – Archer Queen (3-1)

10th race – $8,000 Maiden Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs
#2 – Latasense (7-2)
#5 – Inside Tap (5-2)
#8 – Mom (20-1)


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Older Comments about Preakness 2014: Does Social Inclusion Need a Speed Friendly Pimlico?...

Prince of Pimlico...Maryland's Own GQ...get the latest news from the Man About Town Gary Quill
i really dont understand this. when reading the PPs chitu had the most speed. that means chrome can and will sit 2nd or 3rd and could be the speed. its his smartness that makes him,better than,all the others. if hes not to tired, these cant beat him.,i just pray shared belief dont come in the belmont
The 2 horses that beat Social Inclusion in the Wood ran 4th and 5th in the Kentucky Derby. The 2 horses that beat Bayern in the Arkansas Derby ran 3rd and 7th in the Kentucky Derby . Both Social Inclusion and Bayern deserve a shot in the Preakness, and Socail Inclusion is probably a bit fresher, so more “live”. I’m not sure why General A Rod is in this race, but I just hope he doesn’t stop in front of a horse making a late rally.
It takes a special horse to break a track record on his second lifetime start and first time routing. He may have bounced off of that effort in the Wood Memorial, but it wasn't a bad race by any means. I think it's too soon to tell what this horse's limits are. He could blow this field away and leave everyone wondering what if he had qualified for the Kentucky Derby. If everyone else is watching California Chrome and leave this guy loose on the lead, watch out. If, however, it's a hotly contested pace, watch out for Kid Cruz.
The goal was always the Preakness. When he romped over Honor Code, the Kentucky Derby became part of the road to the Preakness. Regardless, reanalyze the speed. Pablo del Monte has never had an issue at Keeneland. He isn't coming into his own. He's running how he does over poly. Ring Weekend 's legitimacy will be dependent on the performance of Our Caravan tomorrow. As for Bayern, he is so severly outclassed that all he can do is hope to take the rest out by the h3/8 pole. It's California Chrome is he looks good, Kid Cruz if he doesn't, and Social Inclusion underneath. General A Rod has no place here, neither does Ria Antonia.
Social Inclusion is a good horse, but speed-favoring track or not, he has little chance of taking winner's spor, as no horse I have seen this year has what it takes to beat California Chrome. He and his jockey and trainer are on a roll.
  • marylandgq · BTW - Old Hilltop IS NOT your father's Pimlico. So far this meet it's been far from Speed favoring. I just hope they don't do anything to change it. · 2089 days ago
Gary, the Jackpot Pick 5 will be mandatory pay out on Preakness Day?
Social Inclusion can run faster and farther than Bayern.
I agree, although Danza will eventually be coming for him... If Social Inclusion couldn't hang in there up front in The Wood with a soft pace and a race that set up well for him, how is he going to step up to Chrome and do it for an extra 1/16. I just don't see it for him or Bayern for the same reason.

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                Meet Gary Quill

  I am the most passionate person on the planet when it comes to thoroughbred horse racing! One sunny summer day in 1964 at Timonium Race Track is where my Dad and mentor introduced me to “The Sport of Kings”. Since that day, I have had the pleasure to visit over 40 different tracks across North America. Though an IT professional by trade, I’ve had a part-time gig with the Maryland Jockey Club since 1988.

here are thousands of rail-birds who claim to be great handicappers. Well, I don’t claim to be the best… just the most passionate and one that won’t tout “chalk”. Like a savvy stock broker, I look for value and often find it. Unlike the talking heads on horse racing television networks and the dozens of websites featuring handicapper’s opinions, I’m ACCOUNTABLE. That is, good or bad, you’ll always know how my previously posted picks performed along with a running record of my BEST BET and LONGSHOT Play of the Day selections for Maryland tracks (Laurel and Pimlico) at TheRacingBiz, see "The GQ Approach".

   In addition to focusing on the Maryland thoroughbred racing circuit, each year I follow the Derby Trail and post “GQ’s Derby Double Dozen” in early February. 

   My personal mission is to rejuvenate interest in thoroughbred horse racing. Being able to share my energy, thoughts and opinions on this sport via HRN will certainly help the cause.


"I lost $2 at Santa Anita and I've spent $3 million trying to get it back." - Mickey Rooney

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