Nyquist favored at Preakness Stakes
The Associated Press
BALTIMORE — A look at the field for the 141st running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on Saturday (horses listed by post position, with trainer, jockey, analysis, morning-line odds):
1. CHERRY WINE (Dale Romans, Corey Lanerie): Romans earned first Classic win with Shackleford in 2011 Preakness … could add another if late-running colt gets a quick enough pace to launch a closing bid … a Derby also eligible who did not make the 20-horse field. … Odds: 20-1.
2. UNCLE LINO (Gary Sherlock, Fernando Perez): California colt has been off the board only once in seven starts … if you think West Coast horses are as superior to their East Coast counterparts this year, you may want use this son of Uncle Mo in one of you exotic wagers. … Odds: 20-1.
3. NYQUIST (Doug O’Neill, Mario Gutierrez): Undefeated Kentucky Derby winner won Florida Derby over wet track … hasn’t set a foot wrong yet, and it would take a top effort by one of the new shooters to stop him … he’s nimble, fast and versatile, and should be on or near the lead …. what’s not to like, other than the price? … Odds: 3-5.
4. AWESOME SPEED (Alan Goldberg, Jevian Toledo): Got his second stakes win via disqualification in Federico Tesio … big step up here but has services of hot 21-year-old Maryland jockey. Odds: 30-1.
5. EXAGGERTOR (Keith Desormeaux, Kent Desormeaux): Seems to have bounced back from fourth career loss to Nyquist in good form … can rain move up this late-running colt more than 1 1/4 lengths from his runner-up finish in the Derby? … Odds: 3-1.
6. LANI (Mikio Matsunaga, Yutaka Take): Japanese connections have taken unusual training route with this often-flighty colt … he seemed settled while training at Belmont and does have a win in the UAE Derbys … if he breaks alertly the gray son of Tapit could be a factor … Odds: 30-1.
7. COLLECTED (Bob Baffert, Javier Castellano): Baffert is going for record-tying seventh Preakness win with this steadily improving colt … watch for him to be up close with Nyquist in the front end, and it wouldn’t be a shocker to see him get a piece of purse … Odds: 10-1.
8. LAOBAN (Eric Guillot, Florent Geroux): Hasn’t won yet … won’t win Saturday, although you may see him at the front of the pack early on … Odds: 30-1.
9. ABIDING STAR (Ned Allard, J.D. Acosta): Knows how to win … shooting for sixth straight, but has yet to face this type of competition. … Odds: 30-1.
10. FELLOWSHIP (Mark Casse, Jose Lezcano): Made presence felt on Derby trail this spring in Florida, including third to Nyquist in the Florida Derby … hasn’t notched a single win in four other starts this year facing lesser competition. Odds: 30-1.
11. STRADIVARI (Todd Pletcher, John Velazquez): Eye-catching winner of an allowance race at Keeneland … has been training lights out at Belmont … reminds some of lightly raced Bernardini, the 2006 Preakness winner … has blown away last two fields by nearly 26 lengths … Odds: 8-1.