Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

Justify Odds-on Favorite at 7

Justify Odds-on Favorite at 7 Justify Odds-on Favorite at 7
Shannon Reynolds | 17 May, 2018, 17:30

The Preakness, the second jewel of thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown, will be run Saturday, May 19. The 143rd Preakness Stakes is scheduled to take place on May 20, 2017 at Pimlico in Baltimore, Maryland.

From his February 18 maiden win at Santa Anita Park to his 2 1/2-length victory over juvenile male champion Good Magic on the first Saturday in May, Justify hasn't shown any dents in the form that allowed him to become the first horse since 1882 to win the Kentucky Derby after not starting as a 2-year-old.

There were a few concerns when Jusify's flight to Baltimore was delayed on Wednesday but Baffert said all was OK.

"It's always great to have tactical speed and a position where the jockey can look over and watch the race unfold and decide how he wants to ride".

Ahead of the Kentucky Derby, two opposing trends applied to Justify.

Trainer Bob Baffert had no doubt that his undefeated Kentucky Derby victor would be odds-on, but he played along.

"When you come and you're thinking ... you're going to need the Stanford marching band to interfere a little bit, you don't feel that well". I like knowing that I have a chance to win. Of course, once your bet is a victor, you don't care about the doubts you had before you placed it, and with Baffert's success in Preakness' past, Justify feels like a ticket that will cash on Saturday.

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Justify, who had won his only previous race on a wet track, turned in a dominant 2 ½-length win on a sloppy track in the 2018 Kentucky Derby. "Coming in here I feel the same as I did when I won it with the other ones".

Two other Derby horses will try to turn the tables on Justify - sixth-place finisher Bravazo and eighth-place finisher Lone Sailor. Good Magic, which finished second in Kentucky, has the next-best odds of winning.

Lone Sailor is 15-to-1 out of the No. 2 post, while Tenfold (No. 6) and Bravazo (No. 8) are 20-to-1. The Derby pull-away was expected and Justify should easily win in the shorter distance.

Lukas also trains Sporting Chance, who drew the 3 post. I think with him, he's doing the same.

Quip won the Tampa Bay Derby and finished second in the Arkansas Derby. Elliott Walden of WinStar Farm, which co-owns Justify and Quip, showed his allegiance at the draw by wearing a "Justify" hat and hopes the favorite wins for obvious reasons. Demling also correctly predicted that Afleet Alex, Curlin, Rachel Alexandra and Looking at Lucky would spoil Triple Crown bids.

The well-documented bruise to his left hind heel has appeared a non-issue in his training since returning to the track last week.

He ruled in the rain in Kentucky, and a light drizzle greeted him Wednesday as he stepped off his van from Baltimore-Washington International Marshall Airport at 3:48 p.m. Baffert walked to meet his fifth Derby victor, but Justify did not exit first.

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