Like the May 4th Kentucky Derby (G1), Saturday’s $1.5 million Preakness S. (G1) field is dominated by Kentucky-breds, but with only four Derby starters in the 13-horse field, there are plenty of fresh faces seeking the second leg of the Triple Crown.
Three Derby returnees: Improbable, War of Will and Bodexpress, hail from the Bluegrass State, while eight of the new runners also come from Kentucky.
Improbable, fourth in the Derby, was made the morning line favorite from post four, while War of Will, in post 1, is the second choice in the wagering.
Several new faces could have a big impact on Saturday. Bourbon War was a close second in the Fountain of Youth. Warrior Charge has won his last two starts by at least a half-dozen lengths. Owendale was very impressive in winning the April 13 Lexington S. (G3) at Keeneland. Signalman was third in the Blue Grass and opted to skip the Derby. Laughing Fox sprang on to the scene with a victory in the inaugural Oaklawn Park Inv., also run on Derby Day.
The Preakness, which was first run in 1873, will be held for the 144th time on Saturday. Following Justify’s win last year en route to the Triple Crown, Kentucky-breds have won 99 runnings of the race.
The Preakness will be shown live on NBC-TV, with a scheduled post time of 6:48 p.m. ET.