Preakness Stakes

The run for the black-eyed susansThe Preakness Stakes is the second leg of the American Triple Crown and one of the most important races on the thoroughbred racing calendar. The $1 million race, run annually in May, is sometimes called the ‘The run for the Black-Eyed Susans’ with reference to the horseshoe of Black-Eyed Susans draped around the winner’s neck.

This Group One race is run at Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore, Maryland. The Preakness Stakes is open to 3-year old thoroughbreds, and is raced over a distance of approximately 9 furlongs, making it the shortest of the American Triple Crown races.

Preakness Stakes Betting

As one of the highlights of the American flat racing season, the Preakness Stakes attracts interest from punters around the world. Ante-post betting markets open well in advance of the race, with the outcome of the Kentucky Derby usually having a significant effect on the odds tables.

While odds are highest prior to the running of the Kentucky Derby, they tend to give a better indication of runners’ prospects after the first of the American Triple Crown races has been run. During the last decade half of the horses that have won the Kentucky Derby have gone on to win the Preakness Stakes.

Preakness Stakes Odds

Preakness Stakes Winners & History

The Preakness Stakes predates the Kentucky Derby by 2 years, and was first run in 1873. The race features several quaint traditions, which include painting the racehorse shaped weathervane on the old clubhouse in the colours of the winning horse and trainer each year, once the Preakness Stakes has been run.

As part of the American Triple Crown, the Preakness Stakes has featured the talents of some of the greatest thoroughbred racehorses in history, including Secretariat, Affirmed and Seattle Slew.

In recent years several top thoroughbred racehorses have earned widespread acclaim for winning both the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, despite failing to capture the Triple Crown. Smarty Jones came closest to claiming the Triple Crown during this period, by winning the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in 2004.

Many believed Smarty Jones would win the Triple Crown when he became the first unbeaten winner of the Kentucky Derby since Seattle Slew in 1977. However, despite winning the Preakness Stakes by a record margin, Smarty Jones stumbled at the last hurdle of the Belmont Stakes, losing the race to 32-1 outsider Birdstone.

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