Following the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby, it was thought there would be a Triple Crown on the line, but that is no longer the case, as Kentucky Derby winner Country House will not run in the Preakness due to illness. That means there will be no Triple Crown winner this year and it ends the chances of there being a Triple Crown winner in consecutive years for the first time since 1978.
Entering the Derby with odds of +6500, Country House became the second-biggest underdog to win the race and snapped a string of six straight races that saw the favorite cross the finish line first. Country House didn’t actually cross the line ahead of the pack, and that’s where the controversy set in.
Maximum Security appeared to be the winner at Churchill Downs until several riders staged a formal complaint post-race. Track stewards reviewed the race and interviewed a number of jockeys before rendering their decision. Officials eventually disqualified the first horse to cross the line, giving Country House, who originally ran second, the Kentucky Derby victory
And now it’s off to Baltimore for the Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown.
The 144th running of the Preakness Stakeswill take place on Saturday, May 18, 2019, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. Post time is 6:48 p.m. ET. The race will air live on NBC.
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The Kentucky Derby winner, Country House would not have been favored to win the Preakness even if he had run and he was a big longshot to win the Triple Crown before getting ill. A lack of confidence from handicappers in Louisville saw his odds skyrocket prior to the Kentucky Derby, going from 30/1 to 65/1. The fact that Country House saw his odds rise on the day of the Kentucky Derby suggest he had no real chance to win the Triple Crown anyway. Winning the Triple Crown seemed nearly impossible for decades until American Pharoah in 2015 and Justify last year changed the narrative.
While we don’t know the field for the Preakness, at least two top contenders will be absent. Omaha Beach, the favorite to win the Kentucky Derby before being scratched with a breathing problem, will not race at Pimlico and now Country House is out of the race as well. Several others among the field will be non-qualifiers.
Early Preakness Odds
- Improbable +300
- War of Will +400
- Alwaysmining +600
- Bourbon War +600
- Owendale +800
- Anothertwistafate +1000
- Laughing Fox +1000
- Win Win Win +1200
- Signalman +1400
- Bodexpress +1600
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