Unlike the Kentucky Derby when we had two weeks of observing the horses (a lot of good that did), the Preakness analysis will be based on bits and pieces of observation and basic handicapping.
The internationally renowned royal blue silks of Godolphin Stable will be seen on a frequent basis at Hollywood Park beginning next week, trainer Eoin Harty reported Friday from his training base at Santa Anita.
Although WinStar Farm would love to have a Kentucky Derby winner under its colors, the victory in Derby 129 by the WinStar-bred Funny Cide was certainly the next best thing. It could get even better if he adds a Preakness (gr. I) win tomorrow.
Peace Rules is the favorite in the early wagering for Saturday's Preakness Stakes. The Derby third-place finisher is 5-2, while the Derby winner, Funny Cide, is 9-2.
Racing stewards at Churchill Downs have levied a $500 fine against 14 jockeys who wore a patch depicting the Jockeys' Guild logo on their pants in the May 3 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).
Neil Howard may saddle a longshot Saturday in the Preakness (gr. I), but he sent out a favorite to win the $600,000 Pimlico Special (gr. I) Friday. Mineshaft and Robby Albarado won the Pimlico Special over Western Pride and longshot Judge's Case.
All of the stakes races Saturday at Pimlico will offer head-to-head wagering. The Preakness pits Peace Rules against Funny Cide.
Roar Emotion led every step of the way, and held off a late charge from Fircroft, to take the $200,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (gr. II) by a half-length Friday at Pimlico. Favored Santa Catarina ran third.
My Place Toknight, a filly by out of Place, turned in the fastest quarter mile work of :22 Friday during the second session of the under tack show for the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic May sale of 2-year-olds in training in Maryland.
Azeri, reigning Horse of the Year, worked five furlongs in :57 3/5 Friday at San Luis Rey Downs in her final drill before defense of her victory last year in the $200,000-added Milady Breeders' Cup Handicap for fillies and mares May 24 at Hollywood Park.
Forest Heiress romped home Friday at Pimlico in The Very One Stakes, a race decimated by scratches after heavy rains forced its movement from the turf to the main track. Under Pat Day, Forest Heiress sat third in the early going, then as they straightened away for home, came through a wide spot on the rail and eased home.
It was scratched down to a four-horse field, but there was still plenty of drama Friday in the Pimlico Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. III). Summer Colony took the lead in the stretch and looked like she would win the race for the second straight year, but Jerry Bailey drove favored Mandy's Gold by in the final yards to take the $150,000 race by a neck.
Jockey Jose Delgado escaped serious injury Friday after he fell from his horse, Natural High, in the third race at Calder Race Course.
Century City will be supplemented for $10,000 to the $350,000-added Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) May 26, according to trainer Beau Greely.
Major Idea, whose three-race winning streak ended when favored in Santa Anita's Providencia Stakes last month, will be out to make amends Saturday in Hollywood Park's $100,000 Senorita Stakes (gr. IIIT) for 3-year-old fillies at one mile on turf.
Ren-Mar Thoroughbreds' homebred Sky Jack, last year's winner of the Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I), is back in serious training at Hollywood Park for trainer Doug O'Neill and could return to action as soon as the end of the current Hollywood meeting.
Declaring the controversy over the "phantom photo" was completely behind him, jockey Jose Santos said he was confident going into the Preakness Stakes aboard Kentucky Derby victor Funny Cide.
The U.S. Senate Thursday passed a $350-billion tax-cut bill that includes a provision to remove the 30% withholding tax on winning pari-mutuel wagers placed by foreigners through U.S. pools.
- By Tom LaMarra
The New York Racing Association has backed away from its plan to have a mandatory stakes barn for the June 7 Belmont Stakes (gr. I), but it will instead take pre-race samples from all horses in the third leg of the Triple Crown.
Barclay Tagg and Funny Cide arrived in Baltimore a day ahead of schedule, arriving at Pimlico Racecourse around 1:45 p.m. Friday afternoon. The trainer said the bad weather in the Baltimore area was the reason for shipping the day before the Preakness Stakes (gr. I).
Representatives of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association met for the second time May 15 to discuss the future of the Thoroughbred Championship Tour, a for-profit racing series that would rely on owners for start-up funds.
Lisa Lewis is a dreamer, but she's also a realist. So, when she says she feels Kissin Saint is ready to make his presence felt against Funny Cide in tomorrow's Preakness, it might be wise to pay attention.
Here's what the Preakness horses were up to one day before the big race.
Champion Serena's Song much-ballyhooed 2-year-old colt by Storm Cat named Grand Reward, will make his career debut Saturday at Newbury for owners Bob and Beverly Lewis and Michael Tabor.
Jack Knowlton, managing partner of Sackatoga Stable, gave an owner's perspective to about 30 prospective clients at new owner's seminar at Pimlico Racecourse the morning of May 16.
Pimlico track superintendent John Passero said he is confident the racing surface will be fast Saturday for the middle leg of the Triple Crown. "If the rain stops," Passero said Friday.
Links to Preakness stories elsewhere on the Web.
Ryan Foglesonger, the leading rider at Pimlico who is schedule to ride Cherokee's Boy in Saturday's Preakness Stakes (gr. I), took off his mounts Friday after injuring his hand in a starting gate mishap late Thursday.
Heavy rains forced the cancellation of Friday's Joe Aitcheson Hurdle (NSA-I) at Pimlico Race Course. The rain began Thursday night and intensified Friday morning. The forecast was for the precipitation to continue all day Friday.
Florida horseman Bob Candow died May 15 in Ocala, Fla.
My Boston Gal, one of last year's top 2-year-old fillies and the winner of the Stonerside Beaumont (gr. II) at Keeneland this spring, is getting some rest in trainer Carl Nafzger's Churchill Downs barn after throat surgery late last week to correct a breathing problem.
The return to competition by WinStar Farm's previously unbeaten Awesome Humor on Wednesday at Churchill Downs did not turn out as well as hoped, so trainer Elliott Walden will take a "wait and see" approach on a game plan that had been pointing the filly toward the $250,000 Acorn (gr. I) at Belmont Park on June 6.
European standout Rock of Gibraltar, who won seven consecutive group I events before running second in the NetJets Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT), will stand for a fee of A$132,000
A Wild Rush filly sold for $72,796 ($100,000 in Canadian funds) Thursday to top the sale of 2-year-olds in training conducted by the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society's Ontario division.
A Storm of Angels -- Keremalli colt named Petey Foster and a Unbridled's Song -- Rockaroller filly shared the honors Thursday for the fastest quarter-mile work during the first session of the under tack show for the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale of 2-year-olds in training in Maryland.
Eclipse Award winner and European champion Daylami was represented by his first winner
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