BALTIMORE - MAY 21: Jockey Jesus Castanon riding "Shackleford" celebrates as he crosses the finish line in first place in the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 21, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Preakness Stakes 2011: Shackleford Wins Over Heavy Favorite Animal Kingdom

The Preakness is 1 3/16 miles, and the purse is a handsome $1 million. It is the second leg of the illustrious Triple Crown, along with the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes.

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2011 Preakness Stakes Results: Final Order Of Finish, Payouts And Race Recap

The 2011 Preakness started at a blazing speed thanks to Flashpoint sprinting out early which put favorites Dialed In and Animal Kingdom at the tail end early. Eventual winner, Shackleford, was able to hang in and hold onto second place through the first quarter mile and then things slowed dramatically which allowed the winner to have enough in the tank to hold off the late finishing charge of second-place Animal Kingdom.

The great horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come explains:

The splits make it abundantly clear where Shackleford won this race; after a very quick opening quarter, the pace slowed to a crawl of 24.18 and 25.14 for the next two splits.  The fourth quarter? 25.21.  Fast, slow, slower.    

The full order of finish for the 2011 Preakness:

  1. Shackleford
  2. Animal Kingdom
  3. Astrology
  4. Dialed In
  5. Dance City
  6. Mucho Macho Man
  7. King Congie
  8. Mr. Commons
  9. Isn't He Perfect
  10. Concealed Identity
  11. Norman Asbjornson
  12. Sway Away
  13. Midnight Interlude
  14. Flashpoint

Here's the payouts, internal splits and fractions for the 2011 Preakness

1st: 5-Shackleford - ($27.20, $10.20, $6.80)

2nd: 11-Animal Kingdom - ($4.20, $3.60)
3rd: 1-Astrology - ($8.00)
4th: 10-Dialed In

$1 Exacta: $57.40
$1 Trifecta: $700.90
$0.10 Super: $310.63
$1 Daily Double: $32.60
$0.50 Pick 3: $29.10
$0.50 Pick 4: $135.80
$0.50 Pick 5: $730.65

Fractions:
1/4: 22.69
1/2: 46.87
3/4: 1:12.01
Mile: 1:37.22
Finish: 1:56.47

Internal Splits:
1/4: 22.69
1/2: 24.18
3/4: 25.14
Mile: 25.21
Finish: 19.25

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BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 21: Jockey Jesus Castanon guides Shackleford #5 to victory over Animal Kingdom and jocky John Velazquez #11 and Astrology with jockey Mike Smith #1 to win the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 21, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

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Preakness 2011 Video Replay: Shackleford Holds Off Animal Kingdom Charge

The 2011 Preakness was a fast race with Shackleford getting out to an early lead and holding on through the final stretch as Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom made a furious late charge. Animal Kingom, the heavy favorite, had some early trouble that jockey John Velazquez was caused by some mud flying into the horses face. Dialed In also started slow and made strong finish to end up fourth.

Click here for the full order of finish and here for the final payouts from the 2011 Preakness.

Watch the video of the full 2011 Preakness here.

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out our 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms

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Preakness Stakes Results 2011: Finishing Order And Payouts From Saturday's Race

After what felt like an endless wait, the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes got underway around 3:20 PM Arizona time on Saturday, May 21. 

Shackleford won the race, providing bettors with a payment of $27.20 and running the race in 1:56.47.

Heavy favorite Animal Kingdom finished in second, while Astrology came in third.

The race was quite unusual from the onset, with several horses showing a lot of hesitance getting into the gates.

Dance City, the 8th horse, showed a lot of attitude before getting put in the gate, requiring several extra hands to force him into the correct position.

After the field finally loaded into the gates, Flashpoint took an early lead after the bell rang, with Shackleford close on his heels. After a brief lead, Flashpoint gave way and Shackleford never looked back.

With the win, Shackleford takes home $666,000 as the Preakness purse, and a $555,000 bonus from Xpressbet.

Mucho Macho Man was a sentimental favorite across the nation, earning bets for sharing a name with the late "Macho Man" Randy Savage. He never quite finished strong.

Here's the payout:

1. Shackleford $27.20, $10.20, $6.80

2. Animal Kingdom $3.20, $3.60

3. Astrology $8.08

Exacta: 5-11 $114.80
Trifecta: 5-11-1 $1,401.80
Superfecta: 5-11-1-10 $6,212.60

Click here for the full order of finish and here for video replay from the 2011 Preakness.    

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2011 Preakness Results: Shackleford Edges Animal Kingdom, Full Order Of Finish

The running of the 2011 Preakness Stakes provided a thrill for spectators and bettors alike. As expected it was a fast race. The winner of the second leg of the Triple Crown for 2011 is Shackleford, ridden by jockey Jesus Castanon. Shackleford is owned by Michael Lauffer and trained by Dale Romans. The winner's prize is $660,000 of the total $1.1 million purse.

Animal Kingdom came in second and missed a chance to be the ninth horse to win the Preakness Stakes after also winning the Kentucky Derby. Big Brown last did it in 2008. No horse has won the Triple Crown since Affirmed in 1978. Astrology came in third with Dialed In fourth.

The full order of finish for the 2011 Preakness:

 

  1. Shackleford
  2. Animal Kingdom
  3. Astrology
  4. Dialed In
  5. Dance City
  6. Mucho Macho Man
  7. King Congie
  8. Mr. Commons
  9. Isn't He Perfect
  10. Concealed Identity
  11. Norman Asbjornson
  12. Sway Away
  13. Midnight Interlude
  14. Flashpoint

Click here for the final payout and here for video replay from the 2011 Preakness.     

Here was the morning line and final odds before the race:

1 ASTROLOGY 15/1 14/1
2 NORMAN ASBJORNSON 30/1 35/1
3 KING CONGIE 20/1 20/1
4 FLASHPOINT 20/1 15/1
5 SHACKLEFORD 12/1 11/1
6 SWAY AWAY 15/1 12/1
7 MIDNIGHT INTERLUDE 15/1 12/1
8 DANCE CITY 12/1 11/1
9 MUCHO MACHO MAN 6/1 9/2
10 DIALED IN 9/2 4/1
11 ANIMAL KINGDOM 2/1 3/1
12 ISN'T HE PERFECT 30/1 25/1
13 CONCEALED IDENTITY 30/1 23/1
14 MR. COMMONS 20/1 30/1

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out our 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms

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Current Preakness 2011 Odds: Mucho Macho Man Moves To 6/1

UPDATE: With only an hour and a half before the race, Mucho Macho Man has moved up to 4/1 odds. Animal Kingdom is now 5/2, with Dialed in at 7/2.

With the death of Randy Savage, impulse betting for the Mucho Macho Man has spiked. As of this afternoon, Mucho Macho Man has moved to 6/1 odds, giving hope to Slim Jim fans across the nation.

Here's the latest odds for the 12th race at Pimlico, the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes. Click on the horse names for previews of the individual colts.

Astrology 15-1
Norman Asbjornson 30-1
King Congie 20-1
Flashpoint 20-1
Shackleford 12-1
Sway Away 15-1
Midnight Interlude 15-1
Dance City 12-1
Mucho Macho Man 6-1
Dialed In 9-2
Animal Kingdom 2-1
Isn't He Perfect 30-1
Concealed Identity 30-1
Mr. Commons 20-1

I went ahead and picked King Congie to win at the OTB. With a $20 bet, I stand to win $400. Will this happen? Probably not, but I'd rather go down in flames than only get half of my exacta correct.

Our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.

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Preakness 2011: Morning Updated Odds And Final Expert Picks, Predictions, Post Time

The post time for the 2011 Preakness Stakes is just hours away and we've got a final look at the updated morning line which still has the favorite listed as Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom. At 2/1 odds, a lot of people are betting not just on the horses ability to run well on Saturday but on the hope of a possible Triple Crown winner for the first time since Affirmed in 1978.

Post time for the big race at Pimlico is 6:25 p.m. ET / 3: 25 p.m. on May 21 with NBC carrying the live TV broadcast.

Here's a look at some final picks and predictions from the experts and handicappers. 

Matt Gardner from And Down The Stretch They Come:

PREAKNESS 2011: Preview and Picks - And Down The Stretch They Come
The Pick There is no way I can take 2/1 on Animal Kingdom for a win bet in this spot... Dialed In's 9/2 morning line odds are decent, but I'd really like to see 5/1 or better. If Shackleford gets bet down from his ridiculous 12/1 morning line price (which I think he will), then there's a chance Dialed In will drift up on the tote board...I'll probably go with a two-pronged strategy for a trifecta/exacta wager in this race: one play will have Dialed In on top, with Norman Asbjornson, Dance City, Mr. Commons, Animal Kingdom and Mucho Macho Man in the 2nd and 3rd spots. 

The second prong will depend on how the board is treating Animal Kingdom; if he drifts up enough in price (or the "will pays" suggest some value to be found), I'll play a ticket with the Derby winner over Norman Asbjornson and Mr. Commons, and maybe Dance City.

Washington Post's Andrew Beyer:

Preakness 2011: Will Animal Kingdom win again? - The Early Lead - The Washington Post
The Post’s Andrew Beyer thinks Animal Kingdom, the Kentucky Derby winner, might just have the staying power to win the second leg of the Triple Crown, beating out Dance City.

Jerry Izenberg and Tom Luicci from The NJ Star-Ledger:

Preakness 2011: The Star-Ledger's picks | NJ.com
1. DIALED IN Great blanket finish with these three closers right there. Dialed In was not overused in the Derby, and a faster pace up front should make him a winner. 2. ANIMAL KINGDOM Can win it for the same reasons I think Dialed In will. 3. MUCHO MACHO MAN Has hit the board in every race, is maturing and a heck of a good bet.

1. DIALED IN Beaten Kentucky Derby favorite never got the fast early pace he needed but still blazed the final half in 47-seconds flat to rally from 19th to eighth. 2. DANCE CITY Third-place Arkansas Derby finisher was toughened up by that race and has a running style that will keep him close throughout. 3. ANIMAL KINGDOM The Derby winner has only been first or second in five career starts but has never had to wheel back after just two weeks — and after a big effort like the one he had at Churchill. 4. MUCHO MACHO MAN Comes off a solid third in the Kentucky Derby and hasn’t ducked anyone, with the Preakness marking his sixth straight try against graded stakes company. 

And finally the updated morning line from Bodog:

1 ASTROLOGY 15/1
2 NORMAN ASBJORNSON 30/1
3 KING CONGIE 20/1
4 FLASHPOINT 20/1
5 SHACKLEFORD 12/1
6 SWAY AWAY 15/1
7 MIDNIGHT INTERLUDE 15/1
8 DANCE CITY 12/1
9 MUCHO MACHO MAN 6/1
10 DIALED IN 9/2
11 ANIMAL KINGDOM 2/1
12 ISN'T HE PERFECT 30/1
13 CONCEALED IDENTITY 30/1
14 MR. COMMONS 20/1

Happy betting!

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out our 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.     

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BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 20: Exercise rider Carlos Rosas takes Preakness entrant Astrology over the track at Pimlico Race Course on May 20, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The 136th running of the Preakness Stakes will take place on May 21. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)


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Preakness History Has Been Very Kind To Kentucky Derby Winners

The Preakness is the second leg of the Triple Crown which is considered one of the most difficult achievements in sports. The Triple Crown, of course, starts with the Kentucky Derby. And while there have only been a total of 11 winners of Triple Crown, and there's no winner since Affirmed in 1978, that doesn't mean the Derby winners haven't ran well at Preakness.

In fact, according to research from And Down The Stretch They Come:

Since 1986, nine Derby winners have won at Pimlico, six have finished 2nd, and three have finished 3rd, for an overall in-the-money success rate of 18-for-24 (75%).

Animal Kingdom currently sits with 2/1 odds for Saturday's 2011 Preakness. History say that you might want to put him in your exacta or trifecta if not as the outright winner. 

Here's the full list of all Kentucky Derby winners since 1986 and how they finished at the Preakness.

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ELKTON, MD - MAY 17: Hot walker Noe Lagunas holds Kentucky Derby winner and Preakness entrant Animal Kingdom at the Fair Hill Training Center on May 17, 2011 in Elkton, Maryland. Animal Kingdom is training for Saturday's 136th Preakness Stakes in Baltimore. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out our 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.  

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Preakness Stakes 2011: Expert Picks, Predictions And Updated Odds

The 2011 Preakness Stakes is just one day away and barring the end of the world on May 21, it should be a fantastic race. The experts are mixed in their picks and predictions which gives the better some interesting choices to make. Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom is a 2/1 favorite but much of that is based on uninformed public betting on name recognition alone. T

he best handicapper looks at all factors, including the pedigree, race history, and how the horse looks in workouts leading up to post time.

Jack Jones of Bet Firms likes Shackleford to win with Mucho Macho Man to place and Midnight Interlude to Show. He had Animal Kingdom coming in fourth. Jones feels like a front-running horse like Shackleford benefits from the shorter 1 3/16 mile course at Pimlico. 

2011 Preakness Stakes Predictions & Picks to Win
Win: Shackleford (+800) – This horse has not been getting the respect it deserves, and I am going to continue buying into this overachiever Saturday. Shackleford was the front-runner at the Kentucky Derby and led from the gate deep into the stretch before giving away. He finished in fourth place, beaten by 3 ½ lengths by Animal Kingdom.

The Baltimore Sun has a full range of picks and predictions from their expert, Liam Durbin. He thinks the faster pace in the Preakness will help the Derby winner track down the field even faster. Of the non-Derby horses, Astrology is Durbin's underdog.

Preakness picks: Baltimore Sun predictions for 13 races at Preakness 2011 - baltimoresun.com
What to Bet: I will play Animal Kingdom to win. I will box Animal Kingdom, Mucho Macho Man and Dialed In for my exacta. For my trifecta box, I will throw in Astrology.

Expert horse handicapper Arthur Bodley of 1800-Sports.com has Mucho Macho Man as his winner with 

Preakness Picks - 2011 Preakness Stakes Picks
"Mucho Macho Man was one of my early Triple Crown favorites for months. He performed well at the Derby with his natural stride. He is nearing the age to step up and put on the Grade 1 performance he is capable of. Posting +550 odds at SBG Global, Mucho Macho Man remains my Preakness pick."

Here's an updated look at the odds for the 2011 Preakness as of Friday:

1 Astrology 15/1
2 Norman Asbjornson 30/1
3 King Congie 20/1
4 Flashpoint 20/1
5 Shackleford 12/1
6 Sway Away 15/1
7 Midnight Interlude 15/1
8 Dance City 12/1
9 Mucho Macho Man 6/1
10 Dialed In 9/2
11 Animal Kingdom 2/1
12 Isn't He Perfect 30/1
13 Concealed Identity 30/1
14 Mr. Commons 20/1

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BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 19: Exercise rider Dana Barnes takes Preakness entrant Midnight Interlude over the track at Pimlico Race Course on May 19, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The 136th running of the Preakness Stakes will be run on Saturday. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out our 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.

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Preakness Contenders 2011: King Congie Has Sleeper Potential At Pimlico

Out of all the horses in the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes, King Congie stands out to be as the biggest sleeper pick. If you asked me today who I would select to win the race, it wouldn't be Dialed In or Animal Kingdom; no, it would be King Congie.

What is he thinking, you ask? King Congie is an extremely long shot with odds of 25/1 as of Wednesday. If you take a look at his track record, you find out he's ready for the big stage.

King Congie has won two of the last four races he has participated in, showing a lot of stamina and guts. Check out this horse's closing speed:

 

King Congie's mount will be Robbie Albarado, the jockey who was removed from Animal Kingdom in favor of John Velazquez just the day before the 2011 Kentucky Derby.

Albarado will be looking for vengence at Pimlico, and there's no better horse to do it on than King Congie. Tom Albertrani is the trainer for this horse, and Albertrani looks for his second career Preakness victory (2006, Bernardini).

Check contender previews for Norman Asbjornson and Astrology.

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Preakness Contenders 2011: Norman Asbjornson, Long Shot For Pimlico Victory

Norman Asbjornson is a very unusual name for a horse. Sounds like an old guy who might run a very successful business, right?

Actually, that's the truth. This colt is named after the CEO of a very successful Oklahoma-based heating and air conditioning company called AAON.

Norman Asbjornson is trained by Christopher Grove, and will be Grove's first-ever entrant into the Preakness Stakes. Julian Pimentel will mount this horse to run on Saturday.

Norman Asbjornson has run three times in 2011, winning, placing, and finishing fourth. Here's a video of Norman Asbjornson winning a 1 1/16 mile race on January 15 in Philadelphia:

The oddsmakers don't have a lot of faith in Norman Asbjornson, as his odds currently lie at 30/1.

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out SB Nation's 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.

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Preakness Contenders 2011: Astrology A 'Dark Horse' To Win At Pimlico

Steve Asmussen has been very successful of late at the Preakness Stakes, training the winning horses in both 2007 and 2009 (Curlin, Rachel Alexandra). Asmussen looks to earn his third Preakness victory on May 21 with Astrology, and he just might pull it off.

Astrology has run in seven races during his career, finishing in the money every time. Back in September of 2010, Astrology showed a very strong finish against To Honor and Serve to win a 7 furlong race on the back stretch.

This type of explosive speed should help Astrology in the Preakness Stakes, where he will face several accomplished horses, including Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom.

Mike Smith will be Astrology's jockey for the race. An accomplished athlete, Smith is 45 years old and has already been inducted into the Hall of Fame. In 2009, Smith's mount, Mine That Bird, finished second behind Asmussen's filly, Rachel Alexandra in the 134th Preakness Stakes.

Astrology will open the race on the rail, and with a full field of 14 horses, it could be difficult for this colt to find the opening he needs. A good start is essential for Smith and Astrology, who can then use his strong closing skills to win the race.

Check out a profile of Norman Asbjornson, another long shot to win the Preakness on Saturday.

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Preakness Contenders 2011: Dialed In Draws 10th Post Position

After the Preakness Post Position Draw was held on Wednesday, Dialed In drew the 10th post. This turns out to be an excellent draw for Dialed In, who can erase the horse racing world's collective memory of his bad performance in the Kentucky Derby with a victory in the Preakness Stakes on May 21.

Dialed In is eligible for the massive $5.5 million bonus if he reigns supreme at Pimlico on Saturday. Trainer Nick Zito and his ownership group clearly would stand to benefit from this horse winning the Preakness, and I fully expect jockey Julien Laparoux to get the most out of this colt in the final stretch.

The last time a horse won from the 10th post position? 1998, when Real Quiet won with a time of 1:54.75. Bob Baffert was Real Quiet's trainer.

Baffert has been very successful at the Preakness, winning five of the last 14 races run at Pimlico Race Course. Baffert has one horse in the 2011 Preakness: Midnight Interlude, who is currently at 14/1 odds in the 7th position.

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Preakness Post Position Draw Results: Astrology On The Post, Shackleford Best Draw

The 2011 Preakness post position draw was held on Wednesday and the results are in. Astrology gets the rail position with Mr. Commons on the outside. Favorites Animal Kingdom and Dialed In are next to each other in prime spots at 10 and 11.

Post position is important in determining the angle going into the first corner but in the Preakness with only 14 horses in the field there's more room to maneuver than at the 19-horse Kentucky Derby. 

Another horse with a good draw is Shackleford at the fifth spot. Shackleford likes to get out fast and hold a lead so a good draw should help his odds. 

Here's the full order of the horse with the most recent odds from before the draw.

  1. Astrology 18/1
  2. Norman Asbjornson 30/1
  3. King Congie 25/1 
  4. Flashpoint 14/1 
  5. Shackleford 8/1 
  6. Sway Away 16/1 
  7. Midnight Interlude 14/1
  8. Dance City 9/1 
  9. Mucho Macho Man 5/1 
  10. Dialed In 5/1 
  11. Animal Kingdom 2/1 
  12. Isn't He Perfect 40/1
  13. Concealed Identity 25/1 
  14. Mr. Commons 20/1 

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out SB Nation's 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.

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Preakness Post Draw: Updated Odds, Animal Kingdom Still Heavy Favorite

The post draw for the 2011 Preakness Stakes will take place at approximately 5:00 p.m. ET / 2:00 p.m. PT and will be broadcast live on HRTV.com (subscription required). The draw for post position is obviously a big factor in the race and as such we would expect to see some changes in the betting odds after the field is set.

Currently the five horses that ran in the 2011 Kentucky Derby sit at the top of the favorites list. The Derby winner, Animal Kingdom, is enjoying the benefits of name recognition and the thrill people have in betting on a potential Triple Crown winner. At 2/1 you would think this horse is all but a lock to win but that's far from the case. 

The value bets come further down the field. Here's the odds (via Bodog) for the full field of contenders before the post position draw. We will update after the draw on Wednesday afternoon.

(1) Animal Kingdom 2/1
(2) Dialed In 5/1
(4) Mucho Macho Man 5/1
(5) Shackleford 8/1
(12) Dance City 9/1
(3) Midnight Interlude 14/1
(8) Flashpoint 14/1
(10) Sway Away 16/1
(6) Astrology 18/1
(9) Mr. Commons 20/1
(13) Concealed Identity 25/1
(7) King Congie 25/1
(11) Norman Asbjornson 30/1
(14) Isn't He Perfect 40/1

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Preakness 2011: Post Position Draw At Pimlico Race Course Today

UpdateThe post positions have been announced

The post position draw for the 136th running of the Preakness Stakes will take place this afternoon at 5 p.m. ET / 2:00 p.m. PT. Per the official website:

Pimlico racing officials will use a pill pull, which employs a small numbered ball in a blind draw, to decide post positions for the middle jewel of racing's Triple Crown.

Post position is a big deal, because it determines who has the best angle going into the first turn. Get stuck on the inside and you might get cut off; likewise, starting out too far on the outside might make it difficult to maneuver into the turn.

Starting in the 19th post didn't hurt Nehro at the Kentucky Derby, finishing in second place in a tight finish. With a maximum of 14 horses racing in the Preakness, the field will be slightly easier to navigate for the jockeys.

The field is nearly locked in for the Preakness, and only Saratoga Red remains on the wait list, hoping for a late scratch from one of the contenders. Check out the full list of horses at the official Preakness website.

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ELKTON, MD - MAY 17: Exercise rider David Nava takes Kentucky Derby winner and Preakness entrant Animal Kingdom over the track at the Fair Hill Training Center on May 17, 2011 in Elkton, Maryland. Animal Kingdom is training for Saturday's 136th Preakness Stakes in Baltimore. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes Contenders: Nehro Out For Preakness, Will Run In Belmont

After Nehro finished second place in the 2011 Kentucky Derby, owner Ahmed Zayat announced that his horse would skip the Preakness Stakes and run in the Belmont Stakes on June 11.

There was a little drama last week, when Nehro was running well and the Zayat considered letting the hardworking horse take a shot at Pimlico on May 21.

Well, that talk is officially over. Zayat announced today that Nehro will not race on Saturday in the 136th Preakness Stakes.

Zayat says Nehro "couldn't look any better," but added, "I'm just concerned about him having four hard races in eight weeks."

Before running in the Derby, Nehro was second in the Louisiana Derby on March 26 and second in the Arkansas Derby on April 16.

 Keep posted to the Preakness 2011 news stream to learn more about the developing field for Saturday's race.

The 2011 Preakness Stakes gets underway on May 21 at Pimlico racetrack. Stay with our 2011 Preakness Stakes StoryStream for odds, contender profiles, post positions and more. To look back at the Derby, check out SB Nation's 2011 Kentucky Derby StoryStream. Also, our horse racing blog And Down The Stretch They Come has two must-read resources for Derby and Preakness fans: A Beginner's Guide To Following Horse Racing and a glossary of horse racing terms.

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Preakness Stakes Contenders: Nehro May Run After All

In the aftermath of the 137th Kentucky Derby, Ahmed Zayat, owner of second place finisher Nehro, announced that his horse would not race in the Preakness Stakes, but rather would rest and prepare for the Belmont Stakes on June 11.

Apparently, all of that conjecture has gone out the window.

Zayat has nearly changed his mind, and will determine at a Monday workout whether or not his prize horse will run in at Pimlico on May 21.

With three consecutive second place finishes on his record, Nehro has proven that he is a championship-caliber horse. Losing to Archarcharch, Pants On Fire, and Animal Kingdom in the last three races, Nehro may still be ready to win a big purse for Zayat:

"He came out of the race well, but he's run three races in six weeks and he delivered for us in each of them," [assistant trainer Scott] Blasi said. "Now we'd be asking him to come back in just two weeks. It'll probably be a game-time decision as to whether we run in the Preakness."

With the field still up in the air, betting lines have yet to be finalized for the race. Nehro's presence would even out a field currently dominated by Animal Kingdom and Mucho Macho Man.

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BALTIMORE - MAY 14: Acting Happy, ridden by Jose Lezcano, races against the pack toward turn 1 during The Black Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 14, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes Contenders: Shackleford Aims For $555K Bonus

Shackleford was the fourth place finisher in the 137th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 7. While he didn't finish in the money, there's still a huge payday around the corner if the colt can win the Preakness Stakes on May 21.

Should Shackleford pull off the victory at Pimlico, his owner and trainer will be awarded the XpressBet $555,000 Consolation Prize.

By finishing as a runner in the Fountain of Youth and placing in The Florida Derby, Shackleford has qualified for this bonus program. When you combine the bonus with the prize of winning the Preakness Stakes ($1 million) it's no surprise that the owners were so quick to confirm his appearance.

Shackleford set the pace through most of the Kentucky Derby a week ago, and is one of the favorites to win the Preakness Stakes. With so much money at stake, expect jockey Jesus Castanon to ride Shackleford very hard down the home stretch.

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LOUISVILLE, KY - MAY 07: Jockey Jesus L. Castanon (C), riding Shackleford #14, leads the field down the stretch at the start of the 137th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 7, 2011 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes: Sway Away Makes Field After Santiva Bows Out

Sway Away will be running in the 136th Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 21.

Failing to qualify for the Kentucky Derby due to "insufficient graded stakes money," Sway Away was included in the 14-horse field after Derby 6th place finisher Santiva withdrew, likely to begin preparations for the Belmont Stakes.

Sway Away hasn't won a race since last June, and the colt has two second place finishes in his last four tries. His most recent race, run with jockey Garrett Gomez, was a fourth place finish in the Arkansas Derby. In that Derby, Kentucky Derby horses Archarcharch and Nehro finished in the top two slots.

In other news, Nehro's owner is sincerely considering allowing the Kentucky Derby runner-up to race in the Preakness. Initially, Nehro was due to rest until the Belmont Stakes, but his recent work at Churchill Downs has his owner thinking that he might have a chance to win at Pimlico.

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BALTIMORE - MAY 15: Lookin At Lucky (center), ridden by Martin Garcia #7, holds off Jackson Bend , ridden by Mike Smith #6, down the homestrech to win the 135th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 15, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes: Dialed In, Nick Zito Going For $5.5 Million Bonus

There's no doubt about it: Dialed In was the clear favorite for the 2011 Kentucky Derby, leading the field with 4/1 odds.

While the colt didn't rise to the occasion, it's not all bad news for acclaimed horse trainer Nick Zito: After winning both the Holy Bull Stakes and the Florida Derby, Dialed In is eligible for a $5.5 million bonus if he wins the 136th Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 21.

Zito would be in line to make a cool $500,000 from any such winnings, per the guidelines detailed in the 2011 Preakness 5.5 Bonus Program Official Rules. The owner of Dialed In would be paid the remaining $5 million bonus.

This huge amount of money is the main reason as to why Dialed In will be running in the Preakness on Saturday. After a lackluster performance at Churchill Downs, most horses would be relegated to training and try their luck at the third leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes, which will be held on June 11.

Another bonus, the 2011 Expressbet .55 Consolation Bonus Program, is also up for grabs: Shackleford, Comma to the Top, and To Honor and Serve are all eligible to win a $555,000 bonus if they take home first place in the Preakness. Per the rules, any horse that finished in first, second or third in the Florida Derby or Santa Anita Derby is eligible for the $555,000 bonus.

Keep this information in mind when you make your wagers on the 2011 Preakness Stakes. There's a lot riding on this one, literally.

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Preakness Stakes Considering Date Change To Bolster Revenue

The Preakness Stakes at Pimlico is held each year on the third Saturday in May. It's been that way since 1930. Now the good folks running the Preakness are considering moving the race to Sunday in order to generate additional revenue.

Mike Rogers, vice president of racing and gaming for MI Developments who owns the Maryland Jockey Club, sees the success a similar move had at another big race and wants in on the action. According to a story in the Thoroughbred Times, the Florida Derby saw it's weekend attendance hit a new high and most importantly, the revenue increased.

Total handle on the Florida Derby program was $19.7-million, a decline from $21.1-million in 2010, but combined handle for the weekend was up 29% from last year at $33.6-million. The big difference came from $13.9-million in handle on Gulfstream Oaks day, compared to $5-million on Sunday in 2010.

Moving the Preakness to Sunday could have a similar effect by allowing the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes to slide up from Friday to Saturday.

"We were trying to create a big weekend [at Gulfstream], rather than just one big day," Rogers said. "It worked out well. It's worth talking about for the Preakness, and we'll see what everyone says."

The move will reportedly be considered for the 2012 Preakness. This year the race will still be run on Saturday, May 21.

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BALTIMORE - MAY 15: Owner Michael Pegram celebrates in the winners circle after his horse Lookin at Lucky wins the 135th Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 15, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes 2011: Animal Kingdom In, Dialed In And Mucho Macho Man Too

The 2011 Preakness Stakes field would not have been the same without 2011 Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom. Good news from trainer Graham Motion Monday that he will take his horse to Pimlico and give the Triple Crown at least a possible winner.

"I never anticipated winning the Derby, so it's a lot to take in," Motion said Sunday morning at Churchill Downs. "Yesterday was surreal. It's an odd feeling to have won the Derby, and then you've got to start thinking about winning the Preakness. It's a little daunting."

Other Derby favorites and finishers that are confirmed for the Preakness include:

 In addition to Animal Kingdom, Mucho Macho Man (third in the Derby) and Dialed In (eighth) are definite. Shackleford (fourth) and Santiva (sixth) are possible.

In other news, Archarcharch underwent successful surgery to repair a left front condylar fracture although the injury ended his career. "Archarcharch made it through surgery like a champ. His racing career is over. Too much damage, but he is good and that is what is important."

Pants on Fire is almost certainly a scratch for the Preakness due to internal bleeding from the exertion of the race. Comma to the Top is out 8 to 12 weeks as well due to surgery to remove a bone chip.

Late scratch Uncle Mo is not expected to race the 2011 Preakness. An early favorite to win the the Kentucky Derby was a late scratch due to a still undiagnosed stomach illness that has the horse eating poorly and losing wieght.

"I don't see any way (Uncle Mo) makes any of the Triple Crown races," trainer Todd Pletcher said.Probables,

The following is an early and unofficial look at the 2011 Preakness field via this blog:

Probable

Animal Kingdom (Motion)

Mucho Macho Man (Ritvo)

Shackleford (Romans)

Dialed In (Zito)

Astrology (Asmussen)

Concealed Identity (Gaudet)

Dance City (Pletcher)

Flashpoint (R. Dutrow)

King Congie (Albertrani)

Norman Asbjornson (Grove)

Sway Away (Bonde)

Possible

Midnight Interlude (Baffert)

Mr. Commons (Shirreffs)

Prime Cut (Howard)

The Factor (Baffert)

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BALTIMORE - MAY 15: Lookin at Lucky, riden by Martin Garcia crosses the finish lin ahead of First Dude, riden by Ramon Dominguez and Jackson Bend, riden by Mike Smith during the 135th Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 15, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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Preakness Stakes 2011: Schedule, Post Draw, Field And Updated Odds

The 2011 Preakness Stakes is the second jewel in the triple crown. Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom, is still not a definite in the field. It's hard to imagine him not entering the race and going for the biggest prize in sports. Over the next week or two we will learn more about field as horses are officially entered.

One name to keep an eye on is Uncle Mo, who was a late scratch from the 2011 Kentucky Derby but could be ready to run by the Preakness. Derby post time favorite, Dialed In had a disappointing finish on Saturday but should perform better on the shorter track at Pimlico but only if he gets a better jump out of the gate.

[UPDATE: 05/09/11 11:27 AM MST ]

Animal Kingdom will run the Preakness while Uncle Mo is out.

The Preakness schedule calls for a 6:25 p.m. ET post time on May 21. NBC will once again have the live TV broadcast. The post position draw is on tap for May 18. Odds for the race will be available after that time.

The Preakness Stakes is a classic 1 3/16 mile (1.91 km) race for three-year-olds. Colts and geldings carry 126 pounds (57 kg); fillies 121 lb (55 kg).

The field is starting to take shape with this report about horses who were not at the 2011 Kentucky Derby expected to race the 2011 Preakness : Astrology, Concealed Identity, Dance City, Flashpoint, King Congie, Norman Asbjornson, Prime Cut, and Sway Away, and possibly Mr. Commons.

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BALTIMORE - MAY 15: First Dude, ridden by Ramon Dominguez #11 leads Super Saver, ridden by Calvin Borel #6, Caracortado, ridden by Paul Atkinson #9, and Jackson Bend , ridden by Mike Smith #8 on the font strech during the 135th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 15, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)


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