A horse-by-horse review at Saturday's Preakness Stakes won by Bob Baffert's Lookin At Lucky. You can view a replay of the Preakness at the bottom of the post (provided by the NTRA's YouTube site).
The Beyer figure for the Preakness came back at 102. (via DRF.com)
1st - Lookin At Lucky: A lot of credit has to go to jockey Martin Garcia for keeping this colt out of trouble in the early stages of the race. When the field reached the midway point of the far turn, Lucky had plenty of gas left in the tank as he made a bold move while going four wide and then was able to hold off all challengers in deep stretch to secure the victory.
2nd - First Dude: You can't help but be impressed by a colt that had to do all the dirty work on the front end and then still had the stamina to hold onto the second spot. First Dude's strategy was to simply take them wire-to-wire and he only came up ¾ of a length short. If he had been able to slow it down just a touch more on the front end we might be talking about a 23/1 upset winner.
3rd - Jackson Bend: After a tough experience in the Derby, this colt went out and did what he does best and that's run a strong race and finish with the leaders. He doesn't win a whole lot of races, but he knows how to get into the exotics.
4th - Yawanna Twist: A lot of credit needs to be given to this colt for finishing in the top four after he was bumped hard by a veering Jackson Bend right after leaving the gate. Despite the trouble early on, Edgar Prado was able to settle Yawanna Twist in a good mid-pack position in the early stages and then made a wide position off the turn to put this colt in prime position for the win. With about one furlong to go it looked like Yawanna Twist (and Jackson Bend) was going to go right by Lucky for the win, but like a lot of three year olds this spring, he started to hang and could only manage to hold on for fourth.
5th - Dublin: Ran well to get into this fifth position at the wire but his race was essentially over when he veered out after the break and found himself dead last as the field hit the backstretch. (Watch the replay, he almost hits the pony stationed by the outer rail after leaving the gate.) Prior to the race, trainer D. Wayne Lukas suggested that Dublin would be more forwardly placed than in his most recent races, instead his poor break from the gate saw Dublin farther back than he'd ever been.
6th - Paddy O'Prado: This colt might have been the most disappointing runner in the field after Super Saver. After a sterling performance in Louisville where he nabbed third place honors, he found himself in a pretty good position early on in the Preakness. He was in tight a bit when they rounded the far turn, but in the end, it just wasn't his day to win. Like Super Saver, his Derby performance may have been more due to loving the slop than anything else.
7th - Caracortado: The California invader can't really complain about positioning or pace in the early stages of the race as he found himself with a perfect early race set-up. Sitting in the fourth position as the field made their way down the backstretch.
8th - Super Saver: The Derby winner couldn't have asked for a better pace set-up as he was sitting in the garden spot just off the early speed of First Dude for the first mile of the race. Perhaps the only quibble would be the quickness of the early fractions, but Super Saver went the opening six in just under 1:12....that's quick but not insane. But regardless of how the race unfolded, Super Saver was done as the field hit the midway point of the far turn.
9th - Schoolyard Dreams: This colt broke from the gate fairly well but didn't show enough early speed to avoid the mob coming over towards the rail as they moved into the first turn. He attempted to make a four wide move coming of the final turn, right behind Lookin At Lucky, but flattened out badly once he reached the top of the stretch.
10th - Aikentite: If it wasn't for the awful break by Dublin, this colt would have been dead last in the early going of the race. Instead he found himself second to last and was only able to make up one position the rest of the way. He was in over his head in terms of class against this bunch.
11th - Pleasant Prince: Several days before the Preakness the owner of Pleasant Prince, Ken Ramsey, stated that he didn't think his colt had much of a chance to win this race. He was right.
12th - Northern Giant: This colt was the longest shot on the board and he probably deserved to be much, much higher.