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2023 Preakness Stakes Betting Tips, Best Bookmakers & Free Bets

The Preakness Stakes is a Group 1 held at Pimlico in Maryland and is the second leg of the US Triple Crown. 

It's the second most attended race event in the US, behind only the Kentucky Derby and the excitement of seeing a potential Triple Crown candidate brings many race fans to the track. 

Some thoroughbreds bypass the Derby and head straight to the Preakness Stakes, which runs at a shorter distance but is worth more stake money than the Kentucky Derby. 

Bettors invest heavily in the Preakness Stakes and with the top US three-year-old stars on show, it remains one of the biggest races in the world.

Preakness Stakes Key Facts

DateSaturday May 20, 2023
TrackPimlico Racecourse
ClassGroup 1
Race TypeSet weights
Prize money$1.5 million

2023 Preakness Stakes Card

Preakness Stakes day includes eight quality betting races. 

Featuring on the card is not only the Preakness Stakes but also the Group 2 Dixie Stakes and Group 3 Maryland Sprint Handicap.

Race Name
Chick Lang Stakes
Gallorette Handicap
Dixie Stakes
Preakness Stakes
Maryland Sprint Handicap
Sir Barton Stakes
The Very One Stakes

Preakness Stakes history

The Preakness Stakes was first run two years before the Kentucky Derby was run. 

Pimlico hosted its first spring race meeting in 1873 and on the card featured the Preakness Stakes, a three-year-old race which was named after a famous racing stables in New Jersey. 

The first race drew seven runners and three-year-old Survivor was the winner of the $2,050 prize. He scored by 10 lengths and that record winning stood until Smarty Jones won by 11.5 lengths in 2004. 

Throughout the course of history, the Preakness Stakes has been moved to different tracks around the US. Morris Park Racecourse in New York and Gravesend Race Track in New York were both used. 

The ownership group of Pimlico filed for bankruptcy in 2009 which a deal was made by the Maryland Legislature to keep the race at Pimlico, however, the troubles would not end there. 

The Preakness Stakes is under threat to stay at Pimlico again in 2017 after $250 million was estimated to improve the course and infrastructure. 

The owners are only interested in moving the race to Laurel Park unless funding can be found in the near future. 

Due to being the second race of the Triple Crown, the Kentucky Derby winner is usually on hand to excite the crowd. 

Run two weeks after the Derby, the Preakness Stakes has been criticised for dropping back in distance which makes the Triple Crown a tougher ask for the three-year-olds. 

The colts and fillies then have to make the big rise up in distance for the Belmont Stakes but it's uncommon for the Derby participants to bypass the Preakness. 

Trainer R. Wyndham Walden has the most wins in the Preakness Stakes with seven. Those were won in the last 19th century. 

Jockey Eddie Arcaro won six times which started in 1941 and ended in 1957 when he rode Bold Ruler to victory. 

The best thoroughbreds in the US have won the Preakness Stakes and past winners include American Pharoah, Secretariat and Charismatic.

Preakness Stakes betting guide

The Preakness Stakes is a much different betting affair than the Kentucky Derby. 

The Derby is relatively wide open due to the unknown factor but bettors have had a chance to see these three-year-olds run and the market is more divided. 

Kentucky Derby winners are always favoured to win regardless of form over the shorter distance.  

2017 Derby winner Always Dreaming was the $1.85 favourite to win but finished well behind Cloud Computing which scored at odds of $13. 

2016 produced similar results with Derby winner Nyquist falling at odds of $1.60 to Exaggerator, which handled conditions best to pay $4. 

2015 Derby winner American Pharoah was able to complete the double and punters launched into the $1.60 on offer from bookmakers. 

There was only a field of eight to beat, which is down on the usual numbers, but American Pharoah was so dominant that most of the field bypassed the Preakness Stakes. 

California Chrome paid $1.60 when winning in 2014 before ultimately suffering defeat when going for the Triple Crown later that year. 

Double-figure winners aren't hard to come by in the Preakness Stakes and with all the money being placed on the favourite, punters can get great odds for quality thoroughbreds. 

Bettors should look for the runners that were good in behind the Kentucky Derby winner or the runners which bypassed the Derby altogether.

Preakness Stakes betting trends

Only three of the 16 winners have paid more than $8.80 to win. Shackleford, Bernadini and Oxbow all paid $27.20 or higher. 

The Preakness Stakes favourite has won 13 of the 32 races. The second favourite has won nine from the last 32. 

Overall, the favourite has won 72 of the last 142 Preakness Stakes. 

The runner-up can often produce a long-shot price. Tale Of Verve, Cherry Wine and Macho Again are all recent placegetters which paid more than 16/1 with bookmakers. 

Bob Baffert is a trainer to follow. Baffert has won the Preakness Stakes on six occasions but trainer Todd Pletcher has failed to win the race from nine attempts, including Always Dreaming in 2017. 

Since 1997, 10 of the 20 Derby winners have won the Preakness Stakes. 

Recent Preakness Stakes winners

2022Early Voting
2020Swiss Skydiver
2019War Of Will
2017Cloud Computing
2015American Pharoah
2014California Chrome
2012I'll Have Another
2010Lookin At Lucky
2009Rachel Alexandra
2008Big Brown
2005Afleet Alex
2004Smarty Jones
2003Funny Cide
2002War Emblem
2001Point Given
2000Red Bullet
1998Real Quiet
1997Silver Charm
1996Louis Quatorze
1995Timber Country
1994Tabasco Cat
1993Prairie Bayou
1992Pine Bluff
1990Summer Squall
1989Sunday Silence
1988Risen Star