The second leg of the Triple Crown runs this weekend at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. The 2018 Preakness Stakes is scheduled for a 6:20 PM ET post time on Saturday, May 19th and once again, we’ll get a look at another potential run for the Triple Crown.
This year, all eyes are on Justify after he surged through the slop of a rain-soaked Kentucky Derby to a comfortable 2 ½ length victory. With a smaller field and lighter competition, Justify has emerged as the favorite with early odds right now at around 4/5. Once post positions are announced Wednesday, the morning line odds will go out and we’ll have an even better look at who stands to mount the greatest threat.
Best Betting Sites for the 2018 Preakness Stakes
Right now, Bravazo and Good Magic are the two horses primed to do just that. A smaller field will give these other Kentucky Derby runners the room they need to make another serious run for first place at the 2018 Preakness Stakes.
How to Bet on the 2018 Preakness Stakes Online in the USA
We’ll dive more into this year’s betting considerations shortly, but let’s begin with a look at where you can bet on the 2018 Preakness Stakes online.
There are a handful of legal online racing sites that are already well-established and proven. BetAmerica and TwinSpires, for example, have each been around for more than 10 years now. Both sites are headquartered in the USA, are licensed and accept real money wagers on all major horse racing events.
BetAmerica and TwinSpires will both be taking Preakness Stakes bets this weekend and any wager you place online will be pooled with the actual track betting pools. This ensures you’ll be paid at full track odds just the same as if you had placed your bets in-person at Pimlico.
If you do not already have an account, both sites will give you a welcome bonus as an added benefit for signing up and funding your account.
These are two quality sites for anyone located inside the USA. However, there are also two other online sportsbooks that remain an option if BetAmerica / TwinSpires do not accept customers in your state (both sites work in most sites, so my advice is just try to sign up and the odds are you’ll be good to go).
Bovada and BetOnline accept customers from almost every state in the USA and are also taking futures wagers on the 2018 Preakness Stakes. Bovada and BetOnline are not headquartered or licensed in the USA and can therefore offer Preakness futures at will. Currently, both sites are offering the following odds:
How to Bet on the Preakness Stakes Everywhere Else
Bookmakers in the rest of the world do not typically cover US-centric horse races, but the Preakness Stakes is a big exception. As a part of the coveted Triple Crown of US racing, the Preakness Stakes is a massive event every year that attracts upwards of 135,000 people to watch, celebrate and wager.
Racebets, Bet365 and William Hill will all be covering the Preakness Stakes with ante post bets that are open right now as well as day-of wagers on Saturday. These three bookmakers should be your first stop for all things Preakness. All three sites are licensed to operate in the UK and are confirmed to be safe places to bet on horses.
Here’s what Racebets.com and William Hill have for 2018 Preakness odds:
Preakness Weather Forecast Includes Possibility of Rain
One of the most interesting developments over the past couple of days is an increased likelihood the 2018 Preakness Stakes will feature track conditions similar to this year’s sloppy Kentucky Derby.
A stalled storm system hanging out over the East Coast may ultimately give us the second straight muddy track so far in this year’s Triple Crown of horse racing. According to the latest AccuWeather forecast, temperatures might touch on the low 80s if the sun comes out, but the sky is expected to be mostly cloudy and there’s a chance for showers and thunderstorms on the day of the race.
The evening post time only increases the odds we see a muddy track by the time the Preakness Stakes runners take off. With a full day of racing before the 6:20 PM Preakness post time, it gives any storms in the area plenty of time to move through and give the track a shower.
2018 Preakness Stakes Betting Preview
The Preakness weather forecast is especially interesting this year because Kentucky Derby winner Justify comfortably won two weeks ago amid terrible track conditions. Even before the latest weather forecast came out, Justify was already a strong betting favorite. The specters of another wet running bodes well for the Derby winner.
If the air smells of rain on Saturday morning, casual racing fans are going to pile even more money on the already-dominant favorite. Even if the weather does turn out dry, his current odds of 4/9 are not all that exciting. However, Justify is by far the safest option. If you’re not worried about maximizing value so much as maximizing your overall chances to place a winning bet, Justify is your horse.
A more exciting alternative is the trifecta bet. With Justify and Good Magic leading the way right now as the two betting favorites, the trifecta is becoming ever more tempting with room to add one more runner to your slip. Bravazo might be the ticket, but his odds of have slipped a bit and he’s now looking like a longer shot. Not everyone is confident in Bravazo, but he did put on a nice performance at the Derby.
All three horses ran well in the sloppy Kentucky Derby with Justify winning, Good Magic taking second and Bravazo finishing in sixth place. Those three rank as the three highest Kentucky Derby finishers who are also expected to race at Pimlico this weekend.
Good Magic looks like another solid Preakness Stakes pick to either upset Justify or finish in second place again. He’ll have a smaller field to contend with at Preakness and came out of the muddy Kentucky Derby no worse for the wear. An exacta with Justify and Good Magic remains an option as well.
In the bigger Kentucky Derby, Good Magic was able to make his way to the front of the pack and challenge Justify before falling behind by 2 ½ lengths. With fewer horses at the Preakness Stakes, Good Magic has the ability to challenge Justify again.
Trainer Chad Brown says Good Magic is doing exceptionally well after the Kentucky Derby. On Sunday, he said:
“He has to be doing well, and he’s doing exceptionally well. He’s doing far better than I expected exiting the Derby. It’s remarkable to see how well the horse is moving and his energy level. He already has his weight back. He just looks great. I’m excited about it.”
Keeping Good Magic as a backup option to upset Justify or adding him as a part of a trifecta are both solid options at this point. Of course, everyone else is going to be thinking the same thing and payouts will reflect that, but a win is a win and a trifecta will still pay well even with the favorites occupying the podium places.