Tuesday, 21 August, 2018

Justify arrives OK, settles in at Pimlico

Trainer Bob Baffert walks Kentucky Derby winner Justify Kentucky Derby winner Justify draws 7 post, is heavy 1-2 favorite for Preakness
Cassandra Gardner | 18 May, 2018, 11:46

"In the Kentucky Derby, Bravazo had one of the widest trips and still made up ground in the stretch", Demling told SportsLine.

Justify will face three other challengers he beat two weeks ago at Churchill Downs - Good Magic, Lone Sailor and Bravazo - and four horses who skipped the Derby - Quip, Tenfold, Sporting Chance and Diamond King. Quip will start from the No. 1 post as a 12-1 choice. Diamond King (30-1) 5.

If all eight start, the field will equal the smallest in the Preakness since 2000. Sired by 2007 Preakness victor Curlin, the dark brown colt won his first two races before fading to third in the Arkansas Derby last month.

Justify had an impressive win at the Kentucky Derby and will be the horse to beat. He's won all four of his career starts, all over the past 17 weeks.

Mike Smith celebrates after riding Justify to victory during the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs.

"I'm happy with the way he went around there", Baffert said.

"He was just hall of fame today; he came through", Baffert said.

Justify, the Kentucky Derby victor, is once again the favorite, this time at the Preakness scheduled for this Saturday.

Atletico to hand Spain Europa League glory - bookies
It will, however, have to do so without its talismanic manager Diego Simeone on the touchline, who is serving a touchline ban. The game starts at 8:45 p.m. (CLT).


Those conditions pretty much mirror the ones for the Derby, and given Justify's performance in winning in the slop at Churchill Downs, it should not be an issue for him on Saturday.

Fittingly enough, all that changed barely an hour later when it came time for the unbeaten beast that is Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) victor Justify to take his first spin around the track. He was ready to do a lot more but we just didn't want him to do too much. He knows that he's not going to get fired, so he can just ride. "I really, really need a raincoat", Adam Duritz of the Counting Crows sang in the band's moody 1993 ballad "Raining In Baltimore".

"We've got a top jockey and the horse is doing really well", co-owner Chuck Zacney said.

He was scheduled to work on the track again on Friday.

The recognizable silver-haired, sunglasses-sporting trainer also reached the winner's circle with Silver Charm in 1997, Real Quiet in 1998, War Emblem in 2002 and then again in 2015, with American Pharoah, who proceeded to break a 37-year-old Triple Crown drought and become just the 12th horse in history to sweep the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes.

"It seems to be that the horse isn't able to relax because it's right on the corner and you have lookie-loos all day long and they're snapping the click of the cameras", Baffert said of his aversion to Stall 40. Just previous year, Cloud Computing paid $13.40 in an upset over Derby victor Always Dreaming. Good Magic drew post 5.

Looking out through the grandstand window onto the wet track Thursday morning during the Alibi Breakfast, Quip trainer Rodolphe Brisset said the muddy surface looks worse than it really is. "We should be close early". He'll attempt to keep his Triple Crown hopes alive Saturday in the Preakness. And just so we know we are dealing with a bona fide contender to win, its preferable that the horse in question has at least two races with a Brisnet speed figure of 99 or higher.

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