Old Homestead’s ijockey Thomas Pompell looks around to see where the competition was after winning the Lafayette on opening day at Keeneland. April 8, 2022
- Preakness Day in Baltimore includes five Graded Stakes Races
- Race One on Saturday begins at 10:30 am EST — It’s a full day to make money
- Where can we find betting value Saturday in Baltimore?
The Preakness Stakes is the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown. You should consider downloading a Preakness Stakes betting app, and by all means study the latest Preakness Stakes odds. That said, there are 13 thoroughbred races at Pimlico on Saturday for the Preakness Stakes undercard, and the four other graded stakes offer plenty of strong betting opportunities.
The Preakness Stakes undercard is worth looking at for a variety of reasons. There are high-end races, and Pimlico Race Course offers a Pick 5 wager with only a 12-percent takeout. If you understand how pari-mutuel wagering works, that makes it very clear this is an attractive opportunity.
Let’s look at each of the graded stakes on the Preakness undercard and see if we can find some betting value in the odds at TVG.
Preakness Stakes Undercard Best Bets
The first of the graded stakes get going at 12:16 pm ET. The Maryland Sprint is a six-furlong test on dirt for veteran boys. At 12:51 pm The Gallorette is an a-mile-and-a-sixteenth turf route for older girls. The Dinner Party Stakes is slated for 2:49 pm. It is an a-mile-and-a-sixteenth turf challenge for boys. Then at 3:31 pm The Chick Lang Stakes is a dirt sprint at six furlongs for three-year-old boys.
Maryland Sprint Picks
None of the seven horses entered has ever won a graded stakes race. Disco Pharoah (+250 or 5/2) has back-to-back victories including a stakes score at nearby Laurel Park in April.
Disco Pharoah beat Threes Over Deuces (+1200 or 12/1) in that race, but overall the level of competition is stronger in this race.
Mr. Phil (+300 or 3/1) beat Jaxon Traveler (+300 or 3/1) by half-a-length when they battled each other to the wire in New York five weeks ago. Mr. Phil has won two straight and has seven wins and seven second-place finishes in 30 career starts. Jaxon Traveler has gone exactly a year without a win, but last tasted victory at Pimlico. In Baltimore, he has two wins and one second in three tries and overall has five wins and six seconds in 15 outings.
Sir Alfred James (+600 or 6/1) ran two weeks ago against better horses on the Kentucky Derby undercard and finished third. While his best races have come at smaller tracks, his best is very competitive with this group.
Pick: Jaxon Traveler
Gallorette Stakes Picks
Technical Analysis (+140 or 7/5) is the only graded stakes winner in the field. He won a pair of graded stakes at Saratoga last summer. This will be his second race as a four-year-old and is second off the layoff for top trainer Chad Brown and his leading owner Klaravich Stables.
Technical Analysis ran second in April as a heavy favorite in New York. This race is a little further than that one, and the added distance is exactly what Technical Analysis likes best.
Crystal Cliffs (+200 or 2/1) is stepping up in class but won convincingly in his seasonal debut at Gulfstream Park. He has never finished worse than third in seven career races.
Scarabea (+600 or 6/1) has won just one time in 11 career starts, and the victory came on a synthetic racing surface. That said, his last three races, all against better horses than he faces today, have been solid performances.
In a Hurry (+500 or 5/1) has never beaten horses of this caliber, but is second off a layoff and gets the reigning Eclipse Award-winning jockey, Joel Rosario, today. He just missed at Saratoga with Rosario aboard last summer.
Pick: Technical Analysis
Dinner Party Stakes Prediction
There doesn’t appear to be a lot of pace here, and that could make it difficult to rally from far behind. On paper Set Piece (+160 or 8/5) is the most battle-tested entrant.
Set Piece finished seventh against a strong field at Keeneland and was only two lengths behind the winner in a grade 1 race last month. He is all class, having earned more than half-a-million dollars in 19 starts, with nine victories. That said, his style is to make one big run at the end.
Atone (+250 or 5/2) finished a length ahead of Set Piece last time out. Though Atone does not have the marque wins that Set Piece does, he typically is a lot closer to the front runners.
Beacon Hill (+450 or 9/2) finished a nose behind in an allowance race at Keeneland last time out with Rosario aboard. He gets the top jockey again here, is one-for-one at Pimlico, and while this is the toughest field he has ever faced, could be coming into his own.
Chick Lang Stakes Best Bet
A ton of speed appears to be ready to go at each other early on in this one. Old Homestead (+200 or 2/1) is among those who like to run in the front.
Old Homestead is three-for-three and beat a nice group last time out.
Cogburn (+250 or 5/2) has sprinted out to the lead in each of his four races, holding on to win a pair of them. Whelen Springs (+400 or 4/1) stuck his nose ahead as they got to the finish line battling each other to the wire last time out. Whelen Springs likes to be just off the pace and has won three straight.
Little Vic (+600 or 6/1) dominated a weaker group at Monmouth Park two weeks ago. He is yet another horse who should be forwardly placed.
Lightning Larry (+1000 or 10/1) is exiting a race that has seen horses come back to run really well. He was second in that March event at Tampa Bay Downs which was limited to horses bred in Florida. All three of his victories are from on or close to the front.
It is possible that Chasing Time (+1200 or 12/1) is not as fast as his rivals here. That said, the quarter-million-dollar son of Not This Time is cutting back after trying a couple of Kentucky Derby prep races and should be passing horses in the lane. Trainer Steve Asmussen, who also conditions Cogburn, has won this race four times.
Pick: Chasing Time
Dave Friedman has covered professional and college sports for two decades. From ESPN to the Associated Press, Regional Sports Networks, Metro Networks, and many local outlets, he has written about and broadcast major and minor events throughout the country.