The 2020 Twisted Triple Crown will come to an end on Saturday afternoon with The Preakness Stakes at Pimlico racetrack in Baltimore, Maryland. Unfortunately, the chance for a Triple Crown Champ ended when AUTHENTIC got the better of Belmont Stakes’ winner TIZ THE LAW in the Kentucky Derby.
Pimlico Racing Picks
Race 11 - Preakness Stakes
Unfortunately, we won’t get a Derby rematch as TIZ THE LAW isn’t running in The Preakness. AUTHENTIC will try to his best Meatloaf “Two out of Three Ain’t Bad” with a trip to the Preakness winners’ circle in Pimlico’s 11th race on Saturday’s card.
ART COLLECTOR (PP: 3 ML 5/2) was one of the pre-race, Kentucky Derby favorites but skipped the race due to a minor injury. He’s been dominating since switching from turf to dirt tracks. He’s hit the tape first in five of his races on dirt. His lone miss was his first try on the new surface.
AUTHENTIC (PP: 9 ML 9/5) has won five of his six races. The sixth was a second-place finish when he got off to a slow start. Expect jockey John Velazquez to take AUTHENTIC to the front of the pack and try to win from gate to wire, which could be a tough task on Pimlico’s main track.
SWISS SKYDIVER (PP: 4 ML 6-1) will try to do something only five other horses have done, and only once in the last 96-years. If she (hint) wins, SWISS SKYDIVER will be the sixth filly to win The Preakness Stakes and only the second since 1924 – wow. She’ll have to do better than she did the last time she faced off with ART COLLECTOR when she finished a distant second in the Blue Grass Stakes.
PNEUMATIC (PP: 10 ML 20-1) earned enough points to run in the Kentucky Derby but trainer Steven Asmussen opted to rest his horse. PNEUMATIC has improved from race to race and put in one of the better efforts for this field in his last race. He’s been training well and could challenge for the win if he gets better again.
WIN: #3 ART COLLECTOR
EXACTA #3 ART COLLECTOR or #9 AUTHENTIC to win and #3 ART COLLECTOR #4 SWISS SKYDIVER, #9 AUTHENTIC or #10 PNEUMATIC to finish second.
Race 10 - Black Eyed Susan Stakes
One of the more popular bets for The Preakness is the Black-Eyed Susan and Preakness. In normal years, the bet starts on Friday with the Black-Eyed Susan and ends on Saturday with the Preakness. But, this is 2020 and nothing is normal. This year, the Black-Eyed Susan is the race before the Preakness and not the day before.
BONNY SOUTH (PP: 5 ML 7/5) ran the top, last race speed figure by a decent margin. It was a big bump for her; so, she could be in danger of bouncing or regressing to the mean. If she can run the same race, then she wins the Susan with ease. If she regresses, she’s a vulnerable favorite.
HOPEFUL GROWTH (PP: 8 ML 8-1) got smoked in her last race, crossing the tape sixth of nine in the Kentucky Oaks. She’s what we call an every other racehorse, winning every other race. She was way off in her last, so…
MISS MARISSA (PP: 9 ML 12-1) has won her last two starts and finished second in the race before that. She cut her 6 furlong fraction by nearly two seconds in her last race compared to the prior start. That’s usually a good sign for the next outing.
LANDING ZONE (PP: 10 ML 6-1) is another that’s been strong of late with three straight wins, preceded by a second. She’s usually around front at the finish line as she’s finished in the money 14 of 17 races. She improved a ton in her last and appears to be in top form.
WIN: #5 BONNY SOUTH
EXACTA #5 BONNY SOUTH or #8 HOPEFUL GROWTH to win and #5 BONNY SOUTH, #8 HOPEFUL GROWTH, #9 MISS MARISSA or #10 LANDING ZONE to finish second.
Race 9 - James W. Murphy Stakes
While the marque races could run to form, the James W. Murphy Stakes in race nine could be the most wide open on Pimlico’s Saturday card. A field of 14 will run a mile on the turf course for their share of the $100,000 jackpot.
MONDAY MORING QB (PP: 9 ML 8-1) has run exclusively on the dirt in his handful of outings. His daddy IMAGINING had some success on grass; so, we expect QB to have some luck on turf as well. He ran the top, last race speed figure and if he can do the same on the new surface, he can be like dad.
BUY LAND AND SEE (PP: 11 ML 8-1) should be close to his best in his third start following a layoff. He’s been at his best at the distance and near a mile. He won his lone trip at today’s distance and two at 7 ½ furlongs. Essentially, he’s three for three at the distance.
RECONVENE (PP: 4 ML 10-1) has won his last two races with powerful late moves, which could be the right style for the distance and surface. He’s gotten better in each of his last three races. If the trend continues, then he’ll be a threat to steal this one late.
DON JUAN KITTEN (PP: 10 ML 9/2) is a head and neck away from winning three races in a row. He could have enough to find the extra distance in his third start off the bench. He’s never finished out of the money in five races at the distance with two wins, two seconds and a third.
WIN: #9 MONDAY MORING QB
EXACTA BOX: #4 RECONVENE, #9 MONDAY MORING QB, #10 DON JUAN KITTEN and #11 LANDING ZONE