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Monday, May 16, 2005

Full Field for Preakness

- Marty McGee in the Form reports that Zito is set to go with all three of eligible trio assuming that all goes well with High Fly’s work tomorrow, making for a full 14 horse field. That means that Golden Man can't play. The Pimlico oddsmaker says High Fly will be the second choice.

Pimlico linemaker Frank Carulli said he likely will make Afleet Alex the 5-2 favorite for the Preakness, followed by High Fly at about 9-2 and Giacomo at 6-1. Carulli said those odds might be altered somewhat, depending on the post draw. According to Carulli, Preakness starters breaking from post 8 or farther out are 4 for 101 in the past 15 runnings. [Daily Racing Form]
I gotta say, I’m psyched for this Preakness; from a betting standpoint maybe even more so than the Derby. I was trying to make money with the favorite on top in that race, this time I’m committed to beating the favorite, which I'm more comfortable with. I think Afleet Alex probably will run his race, but I think it's definitely worth a shot to bet he falls a bit short, as he has before. This Preakness will feature some live horses at high odds if Carulli is right. Why, this could mean getting something like 8-1 on the horse I thought was clearly the best in the Derby. More on his workout Monday:
McLaughlin did a double-take after Closing Argument worked four furlongs in 49.03 seconds Monday morning. Closing Argument is not deemed a particularly fast work horse, especially by himself, as was the case Monday.

"That was a good work, whatever the time,'' said McLaughlin, who noted that Closing Argument kept a straighter path through the stretch than he had in his last work before the Kentucky Derby. [DRF]
Though I think that High Fly is a horse that could bounce back in the Preakness, I wouldn’t use him as second choice. I’d sooner take a shot with someone like Noble Causeway; hell, I’d even use Wilko at double digit odds. As for Giacomo, McGee writes that he appears to be thriving.

- Did you know that going into tonight’s game in Seattle, the Yanks haven’t lost since Derby day?

- Closing Argument’s sire Successful Appeal is out of action for the rest of the breeding season after covering 83 mares. The 9-year-old Valid Appeal horse is recovering from an April 26 colic surgery to correct a rare condition in which part of his small intestine was trapped in an abdominal ligament. [Daily Racing Form] GROSS!! Oh man, that must hurt. Let’s move on.

- When Pimlico says that the Preakness is the only day they make money, they mean it.
``Literally, it's the one day of the year that we make money,'' said Jim Gagliano, executive vice president of Maryland operations for Pimlico's owner, Magna Entertainment Corp. ``The tickets sales, concessions and percentage that we get on wagering makes up for the other 364 days of the year in which we do not show a profit.'' [Bloodhorse]