The Preakness Stakes post draw took place on Wednesday, with the past performances released soon after. Here’s my capsule look at each horse and their chances.
MULTIPLIER: Following his maiden win in 3rd try, he closed to win the Illinois Derby at Hawthorne on 4/22, with a sharp 104 score. With 3 straight big gains in speed figure, a bounce is bound to come. Despite this, he has the best tactical speed of the field. If this deep closer gets his proper trip, he may well surprise. Fastest turn time last out of the field at 24 seconds.
Odds: 18-1 Possible overlay, compared to morning-line of 30-1
Pace: Needs average to slower than average pace.
Projected to finish 6th on wet track, 4th if fast.
CLOUD COMPUTING: Stretching from 9 furlongs and 7 weeks off since his 3rd place finish in the Wood Memorial. Bounced to 94 from 100. Fastest trip of the field with some trouble (3 wide for a good deal of the race). Only early closer of the race. Best works of the field too: 4 at Belmont, all 4 very fast, 2 bullets.
Odds: 9-1. Possible overlay, compared to morning-line of 12-1.
Pace: Based on one win, he needs a fast pace throughout.
Projected to win.
HENCE disappointed with a bounce from 103 to 80 in the KY Derby. Best AWD numbers of the field (Street Boss/Floating Island, out of AP Indy). He can possibly bounce back from the 80 score. Not one of my contenders.
Pace: This deep closer needs a very fast pace early, slowing down to slightly faster than average late.
If we have a fast track, he’ll be 14-1 for me, possibly an overlay. Wet track, I will remove him from consideration.
Projected to finish 7th.
ALWAYS DREAMING as mentioned in my prior post, had some reason to win, no less than a recent fast turn time and the recovery angle following his post layoff period of races. With the KY Derby, he leads in distance speed for this field. Undoubtedly he’s basically the speed of the field. Should we have a wet track, he becomes a stronger contender.
Odds for wet track: 7-1, worse than the projection of 4/5 as morning-line. He’s one I may play with my top selections and overlays.
Fast track odds: 4-1.
Pace: Slow pace early, very slow late
CLASSIC EMPIRE has 5 wins in 8, a respectable 4th in the KY Derby, with a good 91 score. Lost in the shuffle here as he does not rank at all in my variables.
Pace: Fast early, slightly faster than average later.
Finish: back of the pack.
GUNNEVARA had a tough trip in the Derby, finishing 7th, and a drop to 86. Another horse I have no confidence in.
Pace: Fast early, slows down to slower than average late. Basically this deep closer requires a meltdown in pace.
TERM OF ART comes out of a pair of 92s, finishing 3rd in the San Felipe and 7th in the Santa Anita Derby. A bit concerned he might bounce from his last 3 numbers. Only horse I’m throwing out on pace alone. Adds blinkers for this race. Waiting since 4/8 to stretch.
Odds: 18-1, possible overlay.
SENIOR INVESTMENT won the Lexington last time out at Keeneland 4/15, following a 6th in the LA Derby. Both races he scored a 93 in. Possible bounce risk here. Meanwhile, he has the biggest turn time gain of the field from his last 2 starts, .8 seconds.
Odds: 18-1, possible overlay.
Pace: Average all throughout.
Prediction: 5th on wet track, 4th if dry.
LOOKIN AT LEE nearly stole the KY Derby, and would have scored me a sweet 37-1 payout from Pool 1 of the Future Wager. He remains a wiseguy pick and I’m sure the public will agree. Arkansas Derby was a small new top of 94. He’s still under influence of that score, so it’s a bonus that he scored a bit better in the KY Derby with 97. Best pace pattern of the field.
Odds: Fair, at 9-1.
Pace: Pretty average throughout the race for this deep closer.
CONQUEST MO MONEY last ran in the Ark Derby, finishing a close 2nd and with a 95 score, paired with a 99 in the Sunland Derby. Only pure sprinter in the field, and can be dangerous among all the stamina-based horses here.
Odds: 18-1, a fair price here.
Pace: Very fast early, to slightly fast late.
Prediction: 5th on wet track, 6th if fast.
Top horses are
Fast track: Cloud Computing, Lookin At Lee, Always Dreaming, Multiplier, Senior Investment, Conquest Mo Money, Hence.
Wet track: Top 3 for fast, then Senior Investment, Conquest Mo Money, Multiplier and Hence.
Overlays: 5 in all, a nice amount for a 10 horse field.
It does seem like a one horse race for Cloud Computing, with Always Dreaming and Lookin At Lee strong solid choices otherwise.