Closer Rich Strike provided one of the most amazing Kentucky Derby victories in history when the 80-to-1 shot ran up the rail and upset Epicenter and Zandon, two of the favorites to win the roses. Heading into the May 20 Preakness Stakes, Rich Strike hopes to make it two in a row. Most horseplayers don’t believe lightning strikes twice. Can Rick Strike win the blackeyed susans and then take a trip to Belmont Park for a chance at making history? See below for Preakness Stakes Odds, analysis, and whether or not Rich Strike has what it takes to win the Preakness.
Rich Strike: Can the Derby Champ Win Preakness Stakes?
2022 Preakness Stakes
- When: Friday, May 20
- Where: Pimlico Race Course
- TV/Streaming: NBC / Peacock
Reasons Rich Strike will win the Preakness Stakes
Rich Strike won the Kentucky Derby. Any horse that wins the Kentucky Derby, often a much more brutal race, can win the Preakness Stakes.
Winning the Derby proves a horse has quality. Quality horses, even if they were claimers in their past like Rich Strike, can win any horse race.
More importantly, it was a day at the office for Rich Strike. He always closes and he likes to close up the rail. Most horses don’t. So we must give the Derby winner a shot.
Reasons Rich Strike won’t win the Preakness Stakes
Calumet Farm in Kentucky bred Rich Strike, but the famous racing and breeding outfit was so unenthused about the horse that trainer Joe Sharp gave him up in a $30,000 maiden claimer last September.
Rich Strike broke his maiden in that race. He did nothing after that until the Derby, finishing third in 3-of-5 races.
Not only that, but the first half-mile of this past Saturday’s Derby was absolutely brutal. If you were anywhere close to the pace in the first half-mile, you had not shot to win.
It’s doubtful Rich Strike gets the same pace set up on May 20. So we must question the horses overall quality as well as whether it gets the same pace to run at in the Preakness.
Can Rich Strike win the Preakness? Yes, the Derby winner can.
Rich Strike is likely to go off the fourth choice in the Preakness. So if you believe he can win the blackeyed susans, like we do, you must handicap his chances thoroughly.
Why can the Derby winner take the Preakness? Speed. Early Voting from the Chad Brown barn, Taiba, who was too close to the pace in the Kentucky Derby to have any shot, and Epicenter will ensure a quick pace.
The pace won’t be as quick as the Derby, but Rich Strike won’t require it to be as fast. The reason why Rich Strike won’t require it to be as fast is because the Keen Ice sired runner will be closer to the pace.
Also, Rich Strike isn’t afraid to run up the rail. Most horses are, but Rich has no fear. So expect a great run from the Derby winner. A good enough run to possibly win the Preakness at overlay odds.
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