All eyes are on one horse in Saturday’s Preakness Stakes.
The Kentucky Derby winner is the 4-5 morning-line favorite and looking to make the second step toward becoming thoroughbred horse racing’s 13th Triple Crown winner and second in the last three years.
And Terry Finley, the 1982 Harry S. Truman graduate who owns a small share of the horse through his West Point Thoroughbreds, LLC, is feeling pretty good about the horse’s chances.
“I know Todd’s got a significant amount of confidence that we’re going to show up on Saturday,” Finley said of Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher, “and I feel the same way.”
This is just Pletcher’s his ninth runner and he has never won the Preakness.
But he’s never had a horse run in it like Always Dreaming.
He will break from post No. 4. Right next to him will be 3-1 second choice Classic Empire.
Classic Empire was last year’s juvenile champion. He’s got a world of talent and, if any horse has a chance to beat Always Dreaming, he’d figure to be the most likely candidate.
Always Dreaming has a great chance to control this thing from the start. Maybe Conquest Mo Money will set the pace but the race will most likely play out with Always Dreaming, with jockey John Velazquez aboard, needing only be concerned with those behind him when the field is heading down the homestretch.
Finley isn’t taking any horse lightly.
“They’re all solid horses in there,” Finley said. “It’s not inexpensive to come to the Preakness. You don’t come here unless you think you have a reasonable shot to win. Any horse who didn’t run two weeks ago in Kentucky has an advantage.”
Come early Saturday evening, we’ll know if Finley is going to be heading to Belmont Park in three weeks with a chance to go down in history as an owner of a Triple Crown winner.
And there’s not too much to suggest that isn’t exactly how things will unfold.
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