Preakness: Can't Justify betting against Derby victor

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The favorite, undefeated Derby victor Justify, opens at odds of 1-2.

There are eight horses set to run in the Preakness Stakes this Saturday as Justify looks to win the second leg of the Triple Crown - here's everything you need to know about every horse in the field. I like knowing I have a chance to win it.

Baffert, victor of the Triple Crown in 2015 with American Pharoah, won the Derby for the fifth time with Justify.

Baffert has marveled at how well the unbeaten chestnut has held his flesh and energy following his 2 1/2-length triumph over champion Good Magic in the 10-furlong classic. Since then, the "Middle Jewel" of horse racing's Triple Crown has had a race distance of under one and a half miles.

Two other Derby horses will try to turn the tables on Justify, sixth-place finisher Bravazo and eighth-place finisher Lone Sailor.

If all eight start, the field will equal the smallest in the Preakness since 2000. Maryland's then-governor, Oden Bowie, dubbed the then-1.5-mile race after a horse named Preakness, who won Pimlico's opening race, the Dinner Party Stakes, in 1870. He's won all four of his career starts, all over the past 17 weeks. This running of the Preakness is stacking-up as very unusual, in that most of the field will be made up of new shooters with very few also-rans from the Kentucky Derby taking another shot at Justify. In those bets, you're trying to pick winners in multiple consecutive Pimlico races, with Justify the lone selection ("singled", in the nomenclature) in the Preakness. The forecast says the skies should clear by race time, but after a near week of non-stop rain, what in the world will be the condition of the track?

Undefeated in four races, Justify may not have a lot of experience. Justify has done so much in such a short time. "We didn't want to do too much because of the condition of the track".

"I think it's behind us", said Baffert. "He was just getting warmed up".

"I like being the favorite", Baffert told Jason Frakes of the Louisville Courier Journal.

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

Kentucky Derby victor Justify, with exercise rider Humberto Gomez aboard, gallops around the track, Thursday, May 17, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.

"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. According to The Baltimore Sun, the Preakness is actually two years older than The Kentucky Derby with its first running having taken place in May 1873.

"Curlin relished the mud", Blasi said at Wednesday's post-position draw. "We should be close early".

Kentucky Derby victor Justify, with exercise rider Humberto Gomez aboard, gallops around the track, Thursday, May 17, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.

"They're going to do the best job", said Lukas of the Pimlico crew, "but they're going to be up against it".

And we're trying to keep this relatively simple anyway, so forget the horizontals.

"He's a really good horse".

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