The Triple Crown isn’t yet complete, but that’s okay by horse racing fans, as they plan to let the next two stages of horse racing’s greatest event sink in. The Kentucky Derby produced a very solid contender to run the table in American Pharoah, who was the odds on favorite to take the first leg of the prestigious race, and now is the favorite heading into the 2015 Preakness Stakes, as well.
It’s only natural to pull for American Pharoah, who lived up to the #1 contender hype by pulling away from a three-way tie late in the Kentucky Derby to claim the victory. That doesn’t guarantee American Pharoah the first Triple Crown sweep since 1978, but there is still hope for horse racing’s grandest race to produce a historic victor.
With that being said, we needn’t get ahead of ourselves. The odds will be updated on a regular basis from now until this year’s Preakness Stakes sounds off on May 16th.
The top contenders via Oddshark.com are as follows:
American Pharoah (5-6)
Firing Line (5-1)
Carpe Diem (12-1)
Competitive Edge (14-1)
Danzig Moon (20-1)
The smart bet might be with American Pharoah (Yes: -120, No: -120), but that’s not the sexy bet. It’s also not necessarily the safe bet given how close Firing Line and Dortmund were in the first race. Those two are easily the top contenders to steal the second race, and if you fear that, you’re obviously not going to want to bet heavy on American Pharoah running the table.
Sometimes you just have to go big or go home, though, right? Obviously with American Pharoah winning the first stanza, this is the only horse we can track for the Triple Crown. American Pharoah goes in as the #1 favorite again at the Preakness Stakes, too, so no one should be shocked if the horse wins that race, too. Naturally, that gives American Pharoah a decent chance at winning the Triple Crown, which you can bet on right now (Yes: +225, No: -350).
It’s certainly worth noting that California Chrome won the first two races last year before falling in the Belmont Stakes. Will American Pharoah walk into the third race with a similar chance? Will American Pharoah be the first horse to win it all since 1978? No one can be sure, but it absolutely will be fun to watch it all unfold.
American Pharoah is the favorite for the second race in a row and we’re riding those odds. One key reason is it’s jockey, Victor Espinoza. Espinoza got some criticism for how he used his whip in the Kentucky Derby, but he’s proven to be a fairly prolific rider. His methods work, as he’s won the Kentucky Derby three times and the Preakness Stakes twice. He was the jockey who took California Chrome within one win of the Triple Crown last year, as well, which is more reason to think he’s back to finish the job in 2015.
There is some very stiff competition in this race – possibly more so than anyone lets on – but American Pharoah was in the mix through the entire Kentucky Derby and then flipped the switch and left everyone in the dust. I’m expecting a similar finish on May 16th.
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