The 148thPreakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico Race Course is set for Saturday, May 20. The second leg of the Triple Crown has a purse of $1.5 million, with the winner’s share at $900,000. US Racing will profile all the contenders. The post-position draw is Monday, May 15. Profiles will be updated with odds and post positions following the draw.
By US Racing Team
Look who’s back at a Triple Crown race, none other than Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, the trainer of six Kentucky Derby (G1) winners, seven Preakness (G1) winners, three Belmont Stakes (G1) winners, and two Triple Crown champions.
The most well-known trainer in the game, suspended by Churchill Downs after his first-place finisher in the 2021 Derby – Medina Spirit – was disqualified for a race-day medication overage, will send out National Treasure in the Preakness. It will be Baffert’s first horse in a Triple Crown race since Medina Spirit ran third and Concert Tour 10th in the 2021 Preakness.
Despite just a maiden win in his debut over a five-race career, National Treasure could be a formidable challenger to Derby winner Mage.
He was second in the American Pharoah (G1) and third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) behind Forte and Cave Rock as a 2-year-old. He ran third in the Sham (G3), was transferred to Tim Yakteen’s barn due to Baffert’s ban from the Derby. The bay colt was scratched from the San Felipe (G2) in March with a bruised hoof, then ran fourth in the Santa Anita Derby (G1) in April.
Since then, he’s had four solid workouts for Baffert, most recently Friday (May 12) at Santa Anita, going 4 furlongs in 47.40 seconds, the fastest of 31 at the distance.
“I was happy with him,” Baffert said. “It was serious but not as serious as last week’s (6 furlongs in 1:11.20). He went nice. I was happy with it.
“This is a horse we’ve always been high on. He lost some training time ahead of the Santa Anita Derby, but he’s been working well since. The Preakness distance shouldn’t be a problem.”
Post position: 1
Trainer: Bob Baffert
Jockey: John Velazquez
Owners: SF Racing LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables LLC, Robert Masterson, Stonestreet Stable LLC, Jay Schoenfarber, Waves Edge Capital LLC, Catherine Donovan
Career record: 5-1-1-2
Career earnings: $345,000
Best Equibase speed figure: 101
Pedigree: Quality Road-Treasure, by Medaglia d’Oro
Running style: Stalker
Notes: National Treasure will be Baffert’s 25th Preakness starter. He’s tied with R. Wyndham Walden with a record seven victories … His last Preakness winner was 2018 Triple Crown champ Justify … Velazquez is looking for his first Preakness victory – the Hall of Fame rider is 0-for-12 with three runner-up finishes … Purchased for $500,000 at the 2021 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga select yearling sale.
|1||National Treasure||4-1||John Velazquez||Steven M. Asmussen|
|2||Chase The Chaos||50-1||Sheldon Russell||Ed Moger Jr.|
|3||Mage||8-5||Javier Castellano||Gustavo Delgado|
|4||Coffeewithchris||20-1||Jaime Rodriguez||John E. Salzman Jr.|
|5||Red Route One||10-1||Joel Rosario||Steven M. Asmussen|
|6||Perform||15-1||Feargal Lynch||Claude R. McGaughey III|
|7||Blazing Sevens||6-1||Irad Ortiz Jr.||Chad C. Brown|
|8||First Mission||5-2||Luis Saez||Brad H. Cox|
The writing team at US Racing is comprised of both full-time and part-time contributors with expertise in various aspects of the Sport of Kings.