Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
Sport | By Dustin Murphy

Preakness Stakes 2017: Prize money break down

Preakness Stakes 2017: Prize money break down

Todd Pletcher, trainer of Kentucky Derby victor Always Dreaming, walks to a barn at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Thursday, May 18, 2017.

And this is one of those years.

After conquering both the mud and his 19 challengers on the first Saturday in May, Always Dreaming emerged from the Derby as a real threat to take down all three jewels of the coveted Triple Crown. He's much better than his Derby finish suggests.

Always Dreaming is ready to run in Saturday's Preakness Stakes at Pimlico. Pletcher has never won the Preakness. Certainly. He's the horse to beat, trained by the legend Todd Pletcher, and has the leading money-earning jockey aboard.

Classic Empire is running for redemption, but the field sets up for Always Dreaming, writes Mark Inabinett for

"I'm someone who has been in a lot of races and lost a lot of races, so I know you don't want to be over-confident, but I do feel very, very good about the way he's coming into it". And for good reason - this is not American Pharaoh or California Chrome or even Funny Cide. We know our horse ran well and that there were other big races that go after, and this was the first one on the list, obviously.

Pletcher sent Always Dreaming to Pimlico three days after the Derby, wanting to give the colt known for some aggressive behavior in the mornings a chance to get used to his new surroundings well before race day.

I tussled with Hence and Cloud Computing in this spot. Don't even think about them - not even on superfectas.

Cloud Computing, who did not run the Derby, will break from the No. 2 post and is at 14/1 odds.

"The Derby is a race we always want to win".

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With regular exercise rider Nick Bush aboard, the son of Bodemeister jogged a mile while accompanied by a pony, the same routine he went through the day prior to his victory in the May 6 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! With the average length of a horse being 8-9 feet, that 75 feet covers the 8-3/4 length margin of defeat.

Lookin At Lee - Getting a magnificent ride from Corey Lanerie, Lookin At Lee rallied boldly to finish a well-clear second in the Derby, making him the first horse to finish in the money from the rail in the past 20 years. Despite the hardship, Classic Empire and jockey Julien Leparoux managed to pick up fourth, beaten eight lengths by Always Dreaming.

Pegged as the early favorite for the Kentucky Derby, Classic Empire sits second on the Preakness Stakes odds at +300.

Lukas agrees with Classic Empire is the only horse talented enough to pull off an upset.

Then there is Classic Empire's form cycle.

Casse insisted the Preakness isn't about revenge after Classic Empire's Derby finish and referenced his horse to Rocky Balboa.

Pletcher, who will celebrate his 50th birthday next month, burst on the classic scene in 2000 with four Derby entrants, two of which carried the green and yellow polka dot silks of Aiken-based Dogwood Stable. So he's aimed for the Preakness all along - no small factor. This is considered the biggest horse racing event of the year, with over 100,000 people attending and a sizeable amount of prize money being given.

There's a pair of 15-1 shots: Gunnevera (seventh in the Derby) and Conquest Mo Money, whose owners paid $150,000 to supplement their horse. Classic Empire; 3. Gunnevera. Hit that - as opposed to having the second favorite and favorite in your exacta - and you can take your significant other to Ruth's Chris instead of Hardee's.

Bonomo, who along with Viola began betting on horses when they were growing up in Brooklyn and accompanied their fathers to Aqueduct and Belmont, isn't sure what will happen to Always Dreaming Saturday at Pimlico.

Toss at $2 bet at: Senior Investment to show.

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