2010 Preakness Stakes Picks
by Trevor Whenham - 5/14/2010
Bodog doesn't have as many prop bets listed for the Preakness Stakes as they did for the Kentucky Derby, but there are still several to look at. So, let's do just that and I will offer my Preakness Stakes picks for some of the props:
Will Super Saver win the Triple Crown? - We've talked about this one a couple of times already, but both my opinion and the sound bet are for ‘no’. In the 32 years since the last Triple Crown there have been 11 horses that have won the first two races, and none have managed to complete the task. Several of those horses have been superstars, and I'm not convinced that Super Saver is anywhere close to that. He won in a perfect trip over an off track in a very slow time when his two biggest competitors had nightmare trips. That's a lot that went his way, and he still didn't win by an overwhelming margin. I don't trust him to get the same lucky breaks in the next two races, and I am not convinced that he is good enough to win if he doesn't. In fact, I'm quite convinced that he's not. The price, -700, isn't attractive to bet that he won't win, but over the long term it has been wildly profitable.
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If Super Saver wins the Preakness will Calvin Borel give his 'finger wave' at the wire? - This one seems like taking money. Borel almost always does his move when he wins stakes races, and you only have to pay -125 to bet that he will in this case. It's probably moot because I don't think that he'll win, but if he does then this should be a win.
These bets are simple - you are betting on which one of two horses will cross the wire first. They currently have five listed, and they are all interesting:
Lookin at Lucky (even) vs. Super Saver (-130) - As I have said a couple of times already, I don't believe in the Derby winner. Lookin at Lucky is a classy horse who has had terrible racing luck his last three times out, yet has shown great heart at the end of each race. You can argue that it might not be a coincidence that he keep finding trouble - maybe he's just not good enough to avoid it. He has a new rider here, though, and it's easier to avoid problems in the Preakness than the Derby. The race sets up well for him, and I expect big things. I might be more inclined to bet Lookin at Lucky to win than to bet him here, but he's worth a look here as well.
Jackson Bend (+105) vs. Dublin (-135) - Jackson Bend is a closer who didn't really close in the Derby. This race doesn't set up as well for a deep closer because there isn't going to be a fast early pace. Dublin has made a serious upgrade in jockeys when Garrett Gomez became available after getting the boot off of Lookin at Lucky. He's had rough rides his last two on that horse, but he's still the best jockey in the country. Dublin had some traffic troubles at the Derby. What I like most, though, is how quickly trainer D. Wayne Lukas committed to the Preakness after the Derby. It was almost immediate, and that is a clear sign that the trainer really likes where his horse is at. I'd take the favorite here.
Caracortado (+110) vs. Paddy O'Prado (-140) - Caracortado was a horse that looked like a serious contender early in the spring, but he has yet to really find his mojo. He won his first race of the year - the fifth consecutive win to start his career, but he was third and fourth in uninspiring efforts after that, and he didn't have the earnings to make the Derby field. He has only run on dirt once, so that's a concern, but he has obvious talent. Paddy O'Prado is a big, beautiful grey coming off an impressive third-place finish in the Derby. He was clearly tiring down the stretch, though, and has had three hard races in a row. I like the horse a lot, but the value is in Caracortado here.
Aikenite (-115) vs. First Dude (-115) - Aikenite is Todd Pletcher's second in this race. He's a colt that I really liked heading into the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last year. He was disappointing there, though, and has been disappointing in his four races since. He hasn't won a stakes race in seven tries, though he is coming off perhaps his best effort in the Derby Trial. First Dude also lacks a stakes win, though he has only tried twice. He's coming off a third-place finish in the Blue Grass Stakes - the race in which Paddy O'Prado finished second. The horse had a terrible start, but fought his way back in and looked solid at the end. He gets the nod from me here.
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Northern Giant (-110) vs. Yawanna Twist (-120) - Northern Giant, D. Wayne Lukas' second stringer, looked very promising in the Lane's End, but was absolutely disastrous in the Arkansas Derby. Assuming he will bounce back here requires a big leap of faith. Yawanna Twist has only run four times, but has never been worst than second, is improving quickly, and is getting a lot of longshot buzz recently. He's the way to go here.
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