Race of the Week- October 3rd, 2020: Preakness Stakes

The 2020 Preakness Stakes will be Race 11 on October 3rd at Pimlico. Post time is set for 4:36 PM CT. This Grade I Race is one and 3/16 miles and has a purse of $1,000,000. The race is for horses three-years olds. There are eleven horses in the field this year. Last year’s winner was War of Will. Tiz the Law will not be running in the Preakness, but Kentucky Derby winner Authentic headlines this year’s contenders. Let’s take a look at the rankings for everyone in this year’s field.

In my algorithm, there are several factors I take into consideration including the horse’s past performances, workouts, winnings as well as the jockey’s performances and winnings. Horse’s rank values are calculated based off of the other horses in the field. Let’s check out the rankings for the eleven horses entered in this year’s Preakness Stakes.

Authentic is clearly the best horse in this race. He won the Kentucky Derby in his last and has five of his six career starts (finishing second to Honor A.P. in the Santa Anita Derby for his only loss). After him, there’s a long list of horses who could be second best. For me, that means there’s some value with the longer shots.

Pneumatic won the Pegasus Stakes in his last and finished 4th in the Belmont two starts ago. He’s completely undervalued at 20-1 so I assume that’ll get bet down.

Max Player is a horse I’ve written about a lot. He’s raced in the Belmont, Travers and Kentucky Derby this year (finishing 3rd, 3rd and 5th respectively). He always shows good speed late and the ability to get up for second or third, but hasn’t been able to win. And at 15-1, he’s a horse you need to keep in mind for your tri and superfectas.

Jesus’ Team is a real long shot at 30-1. But his last three races have all been top quality races. He finished 3rd in the Jim Dandy (Gr. 2) in his last and he did finish behind Liveyourbeastlife in that one. But he also finished 2nd to Pneumatic two starts ago in the Pegasus, and 4th three starts ago in the Haskell (Gr. 1) behind Authentic, Dr Post and Ny Traffic.

Swiss Skydiver is the only philly in the field, but she’s raced against the boys before. Three starts ago she finished 2nd to Art Collector in the Blue Grass Stakes. Two starts ago she looked fantastic in a win in the Alabama Stakes and in her last start she was outran by Shedaresthedevil and Gamine in the Kentucky Oaks.

Art Collector is the second choice of many here and was thought of as a horse who could’ve taken down Tiz the Law in the Derby. Art Collector missed the Derby with a minor injury and is now back for the Preakness. He’s won his last four, but the Blue Grass Stakes win was the only one against similar competition so he’s a difficult horse to compare. It’s hard to know how much more Art Collector has in the tank, which is why he’s not as high on my rankings.

Ny Traffic ran the race of his life two starts back in the Haskell, losing a close one to Authentic, but he regressed in the Derby (finishing 8th) and is a horse I have to fade again here.

I have run the 2020 Preakness Stakes 1,000 times in simulations. Below are the results of those races.

Let’s take a quick look at each horses speed figures over their last three starts

Pneumatic ran the best speed rating of anyone in his last , but that was a huge jump for him, so he’s a bit of a higher risk. Authentic and Swiss Skydiver are consistently very strong while Art Collector is as well to a lesser degree. Thousand Words has seen a huge jump over his last two, so he is a horse who could make some noise here too. Jesus’ Team is also constantly at near the leaders, which could be some major value at 30-1.

Quick Wrap Up and Betting Strategies

Most Likely to Win: Authentic (9/5)

My Bet: 9 to Win, 9-10/4-10/4 Trifecta

Long Shot I Like: Pneumatic (20-1), Max Player (15-1), Jesus’ Team (30-1)

Superfecta: 9-10-4-8/6

Authentic is my definite top horse here. After him, I’m going to try to get some value. Even though Art Collector and Swiss Skydiver are very capable horses, I’m going to look for longer shots with Pneumatic and Max Player.

Authentic Wins the Kentucky Derby
Pneumatic Wins the Pegasus Stakes
Art Collector Beats Swiss Skydiver in the Bluegrass Stakes

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