DeRosa: Armagnac spices up the pace for Preakness 2022

DeRosa: Armagnac spices up the pace for Preakness 2022
Photo: Santa Anita TV

The Preakness Stakes pace scenario got a little spicier on Saturday when trainer Tim Yakteen said Armagnac would compete in the middle jewel of U.S. Thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown. A gate-to-wire winner last Sunday in an allowance race, Armagnac adds front-end speed to the complexion of the 1 3/16-mile classic.

Whether that front-end speed presence is necessary probably depends on who you liked in the race. If you're an Early Voting fan, then it's not great news other than maybe it helps your price.

But in a race with Kentucky Derby runner-up Epicenter and Kentucky Oaks winner Secret Oath, Early Voting always was comfortably the third choice. Now he's a less likely winner while still taking the same amount of money. As Daily Racing Form national correspondent Jay Privman would say, "That's a bad exacta."

Still, there might be some opportunity based on my fair odds (see below). I think Early Voting is the second-most likely winner, but he will be the third choice.

I am looking forward to post positions and morning-line odds on Monday afternoon. The race will be run Saturday at Pimlico.

EpicenterSteve AsmussenJoel Rosario  3-125.0%
Early VotingChad BrownJosé Ortiz  4-120.0%
Secret OathD. Wayne LukasLuis Sáez  6-114.3%
ArmagnacTim YakteenIrad Ortiz Jr.12-1  7.7%
Creative MinisterKenny McPeekBrian Hernandez Jr.12-1  7.7%
SimplificationAntonio SanoJohn Velázquez12-1  7.7%
SkippylongstockingSaffie Joseph Jr.Júnior Alvarado12-1  7.7%
Happy JackDoug O'NeillRafael Bejarano28-1  3.5%
Shake Em LooseRodolfo Sánchez-SalomónCharlie Márquez29-1  3.3%
Un OjoRicky CourvilleRamón Vázquez31-1  3.1%

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