Preakness Contenders

Get Your Bets In! Preakness Contenders

The second leg of the Triple Crown continues this weekend, when the 140th Preakness Stakes takes place on Saturday, May 16, at Pimlico race track, in Baltimore, Maryland. The Run for the Black-Eyed Susans, is considered the easiest of all three races, because it is run on a shorter track, and features less horses than the other two races. With the race coming up in just a few days, a lot of people are trying to determine which horses are the Preakness contenders, and we will help them figure it out, so they can do some well-informed Preakness betting

Last year, California won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness so convincingly, most people thought he would go on to win the Belmont, but he fell short of his Triple Crown Campaign. This year, American Pharoah is the horse that won the Kentucky Derby, and did it in an impressive fashion, catching up to the two horses ahead of him and still winning by a good margin, so he will be the favorite going into this race. But like the Derby, history hasn’t been too kind to the favorites, so you have to be careful when placing your horse racing bets.

If you are interested in finding out which horses are the Preakness Stakes contenders, all you have to do is look at the racing odds, to determine which horses the odds makers favor. 

Here are the odds for the Preakness Stakes.

  • American Pharoah: 5-8.
  • Firing Line: 10-3.
  • Dortmund: 9-2.
  • Danzig Moon: 16-1.
  • Divining Rod: 16-1.
  • Bodhisattva: 50-1.
  • Grand Bili: 50-1.
  • Tale of Verve: 50-1.

Despite the fact that the Preakness can field up to 14 horses, only eight will be running on Saturday, and the number could be reduced by the time the race starts, because of last minute scratches.

Now that we know the Preakness contender odds, it’s time to take a closer look at the Preakness contenders. 

American Pharoah

As you can see by the odds, he is the overwhelming favorite to win this race, due to his impressive performance at Churchill Downs, when he ran down the other favorite Dortmund, and the surprising Firing Line. Since a 5th place finish in Maiden Special Weight in Del Mar in August last year, American Pharoah has won five straight races, and should have a decent advantage on a short track like this. 

His Jockey, Victor Espinoza, will try to continue his amazing stretch, and win his second straight Preakness Stakes, which will give him four Triple Crown wins in the last five events. A win will also make him the first jockey to get three chances of winning the Triple Crown, after winning the first two legs and falling short in 2002 and 2014.

Firing Line

After coming second to Dortmund at the Los Alamitos Futurity and the Robert B Lewis Stakes, Firing line was finally able to get over the hump when they met at the Kentucky Derby, finishing ahead of Dortmund for the first time, but he was unable to hold off American Pharoah, who made a late charge to get the win at the Derby. Firing Line’s surprising run at the Derby, where he was a dark horse at best, has made him one of the top Preakness Stakes contenders, and if he runs as fast as he did at the Derby, he will have a good chance to hold off the challengers and win this race due to the shorter track. In his career, Firing Line has run six races, but has only won two of them, and finished second four times. He will be going for his third career win, at one of the biggest stages in the horse racing world, and will have a good chance of doing do, with veteran jockey Gary Stevens riding him. Stevens won the Preakness in 2013, after coming out of retirement, and has nine total Triple Crown race wins. He has shown that he still has what it takes to win a big race, and will try to spoil American Pharoah’s bid for the Triple Crown by winning at Pimlico on Saturday.


He was the second favorite going into the Kentucky Derby, and the one horse most people thought had a great chance of defeating American Pharoah, mostly because he had won his first six career races, his pedigree as the son of 2008 Derby and Preakness winner, Big Brown. He also looked very good in the lead up to the Derby, which made him a very popular pick, prior to the race. During the Derby, he looked the part for most of the race, taking the early lead, but he had trouble holding off Firing Line down the stretch, before American Pharoah came from behind to beat them both. Some people think he was fatigued, while others pointed to the fact that he was against the rail, but we will find out if he is as good as everyone thought if he can redeem himself this week. He is jockeyed by Martin Garcia, who has had some success at the Preakness, winning it in 2010 with Lookin at Lucky.

Danzig Moon.

He is more of a sleeper than a legitimate contender, but since there are only eight horses in the field for this year’s Preakness, he has a better chance than he normally would have. While American Pharoah and Firing Line deservedly got most of the attention at the Derby, Danzig Moon had an impressive performance of his own. The Horse that had only one win and two second place finishes in six races, and came into the Derby looking at 40-1 odds to win, came in fifth place, finishing 61/2 lengths behind American Pharoah, which was much better than expected. Since a lot of the horses that were in the field at the Derby are skipping the Preakness to rest up for the Belmont Stakes, Danzig mood has a realistic chance of finishing in the top three, if he performs as well as he did at the Derby. According to his trainer Mark Casse, he has been training better than he did prior to the Derby, which makes him very dangerous. He will be jockeyed by Julien Leparoux, who is one of the most successful jockeys in the world, but is still in search of his first Triple Crown race win.

These are the horses that are favored to win the 140th Preakness Stakes, like the Kentucky Derby, favorites haven’t done very well here historically, so keep that in mind when you are placing your bets.