Midnight Bourbon Odds to Win the 2021 Preakness Stakes with Picks and Predictions
In horse racing, forgiving is something every horseplayer should do. It sucks to lose any bet you place on a specific horse. However, when the horse runs into traffic trouble or gets unluckily bumped into or something unforeseen occurs, you can usually throw that race out the window and remain positive about the horse moving forward. That’s what I’m going to do when talking about Midnight Bourbon. He was a sexy pick to win the Derby, but ultimately he finished six and had no real impact on the race because of traffic troubles down the backstretch. I’m banking on Midnight Bourbon running a better race this weekend. And with just 10 horses, there won’t be any excuses for him to hide behind. It’s time for him to put his talent to use as I do believe he is the most talented horse in this field.
Odds: If we take into consideration the possibility of Medina Spirit not running in the Preakness, Midnight Bourbon, would likely go off as the second favorite in this race at post time. Currently, books are offering future odds-on Concert Tour at +325 – without Medina Spirit – meaning that regardless of if Medina Spirit runs or not, Midnight Bourbon is the second betting favorite to finish first or second.
Breeding: In order to understand the breeding and pedigree of Midnight Bourbon, we must first look at the family tree (if you will). Midnight Bourbon is a Bay colt bred in Kentucky by way of Tiznow and Catch the Moon. Tiznow was one super horse. He notched eight wins in 15 career starts and failed to hit the tote board just once in his career. Of those eight wins, seven of them came in Stakes races against elite competition. Tiznow won the Breeders’ Cup Classic twice (2000 and 2001), the Santa Anita Handicap, the San Fernando Breeders’ Cup Stakes, the Breeders’ Cup Handicap and the Super Derby. His mom, Catch the Moon, was nothing to write home about in terms of success. However, the fact that both parents ran extended distances gives Midnight Bourbon great pedigree to fall back on.
Trainer: Midnight Bourbon is owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC and trained by Steve Asmussen. Asmussen has had himself an incredible year to date, winning at a clip of 21% on the season, which includes 197 wins in 941 starts. Asmussen has trained the winning horse in six Stakes races this season, including the Arkansas Derby winner Super Stock, who got the better of fellow Preakness runner Concert Tour. Asmussen has won the Preakness Stakes twice – once with Curlin in 2007 and again in 2009 with Rachel Alexandra. He also has wins in the Belmont Stakes and a slew of wins in the Breeders’ Cup races, so it’s safe to say Asmussen can hang with the big boys in the biggest races on the card.
Jockey: Mike Smith has been aboard Midnight Bourbon for the majority of his races and will be entrusted once again to get the colt over the finish line in first. Smith is having a sub-standard year for his illustrious career, but he does know a thing or two about winning big races. Smith has just eight wins on the year, but four of them have come in Stakes races. Smith is no stranger to big races as he has a slew of Breeders’ Cup race wins in his career and has won two Preakness Stakes (Justify in 2018 and Prairie Bayou in 1993), two Kentucky Derbies, and three Belmont Stakes. Smith is a veteran, and his lack of mounts and wins this year should be dismissed at your own peril.
Last race: Midnight Bourbon last ran in the Kentucky Derby on May 1, 2021. He left the gate as a 13/1 shot and a sexy choice to pull off the upset and take home the roses. However, he ran into some traffic problems immediately and was never really given room to run at the leaders. Had he had a better fate and more room to maneuver, Midnight Bourbon could have used his late closing speed to barrel down the leaders. Instead, he finished sixth without ever leaving his mark on the race.
Prior experience: Midnight Bourbon made his debut as a two-year-old on July 25, 2020 in a Maiden Special Weight race. He went on to finish that race in third, before returning to the same class (bigger purse) and winning and breaking his maiden. From there, Midnight Bourbon has run in nothing but Stakes races, and he’s got just one win to show for it in six attempts. Midnight Bourbon was able to take down the field in the Lecomte Stakes at odds of 7/2.
Can Midnight Bourbon Win the 2021 Preakness Stakes? The answer is absolutely yes. This is going to be my selection for the race as Midnight Bourbon has been tried and tested against some of the very best horses in the game today, and I’m willing to forgive his traffic troubles in the Kentucky Derby. Asmussen and Smith are a formidable connection, and sometimes it just takes experience – which Smith has in spades – to guide a horse to the winner’s circle.
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