5 horses with chance vs. Derby champ in Preakness

All eyes will be on Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another when

an 11-horse field lines up for the $1 million Preakness Stakes at

Pimlico Race Course on Saturday. A victory, and I’ll Have Another

will have a chance to become the first Triple Crown champion in 34

years if he goes on to win the Belmont Stakes next month in New

York. But a whole bunch of 3-year-olds are out to spoil the party.

Some are taking another shot after losing in the Derby, and others,

known as ”new shooters,” skipped the Derby, have fresh legs and

are looking to pull an upset.

Here’s a look at five horses with a shot to defeat the Derby

winner in the second leg of the Triple Crown.

BODEMEISTER

He was the morning-line favorite in the Derby, and he’s the

morning-line choice in this one, too. Why? Because he’s fast, and

the 1 1/4-mile Derby distance was just a little too far for him to

carry all that speed. The Preakness is a sixteenth-of-a-mile

shorter, plus Bodemeister won’t be pressured early like he was in

the Derby by Trinniberg and Hansen, who are not entered. It

probably doesn’t hurt that his trainer, Bob Baffert, has won the

Preakness five times in 11 tries. Mike Smith is back to ride, and

look for the Hall of Fame jockey to put his colt in front right out

of the No. 7 gate.

WENT THE DAY WELL

A troubled trip that ended with a speedy finish in the Derby

gives Went the Day Well fans hope for an upset. The same team that

won last year’s Derby with Animal Kingdom only to finish a

half-length behind Shackleford in the Preakness is confident their

Spiral Stakes winner is ready to win a Classic. The New York-bred

colt broke poorly from the No. 13 post under jockey John Velazquez,

got caught in traffic through the first turn, but rallied in the

stretch to close from ninth and 10 lengths back, to fourth and 2

1/2 lengths behind the winner. In a smaller field, look for

Velazquez to avoid early trouble breaking from the No. 5 post and

emerge as a major threat down the stretch.

CREATIVE CAUSE

This gray colt is quite familiar with I’ll Have Another. He lost

to him by a nose in the 1 1/8-mile Santa Anita Derby, and finished

fifth – three lengths behind two weeks ago in the 1 1/4-mile Derby.

However, Creative Cause beat I’ll Have Another last year in the

Best Pal. He also owns a win over Bodemeister in the 1 1/16-mile

San Felipe. If jockey Joel Rosario can position Creative Cause in

striking position turning for home, the colt would have another

chance to show he can finish strong. It didn’t happen in the Derby,

but the slightly shorter distance may be a positive.

TIGER WALK

One of the new shooters in the field, he’s competed in a trio of

graded-stakes races this year. In his last start, the son of Tale

of the Cat finished a non-threatening fourth in the Wood Memorial.

He was fourth in the Gotham and third in the Withers before that.

Tiger Walk has a tendency to lose ground around the turns so

trainer Ignacio Correas will fit the colt with blinkers Saturday in

an effort to keep him more focused. He’ll also have a new rider in

Hall of Famer Kent Desormeaux – a two-time Preakness winner very

familiar with the Pimlico racing surface. Long odds at 30-1, but

he’s a hometown horse owned by Kevin Plank’s nearby Sagamore

Farm.

COZZETTI

Nowadays, it’s wise not to discard the chances of horses trained

by Dale Romans. He won last year’s Preakness with Shackleford, and

watched as Dullahan finish a strong for third in the Derby two

weeks ago. While his top 3-year-old is sitting out the Preakness,

he’s sending out this gray colt with hopes of pulling off a

surprise at 30-1. Earlier in the week, this maiden winner who likes

to come from behind worked five furlongs in a fast 58.80 seconds

over a muddy track at Churchill Downs, and Romans said, ”He’s

fresh, and he’s going to have to run fast” on Saturday, especially

leaving from the outside No. 11 post. He was fourth in the Arkansas

Derby, 9 3/4 lengths behind Bodemeister, in his last start.

Follow Richard Rosenblatt on Twitter at:

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