A Cat Picks the 2014 Preakness

By Adele

Only the most heartless brute would want to dash the hopes of a horse with a shot at winning the Triple Crown, so I’m betting my treats on Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome, the odds-on favorite at 3-5 in the 10-horse field, to win the Preakness Stakes May 17 at Pimlico (4:30 p.m. ET on NBC).

But as always with horse-racing, there’s a bit of drama going on in the barn. “Chromie,” as they call him, has a blister in his throat that makes him cough. His trainer said it was there for the Derby and didn’t get him down, so let’s keep our paws crossed.

Also, it’s been raining, uh, cats and dogs in these parts, and the track may be muddy. Chromie has never run in mud, but he’s never been finicky about the surface, so I hope he’s good with getting his hooves dirty.

He drew the 3rd post position in a field of just 10 horses.

I’ve got a couple of other favorites. A filly named Ria Antonia is the only girl in the race, running from pp 6 with Calvin Borel on her back. They say she’s no Rachel Alexandra (who beat the boys back in 2009) and she has the worst odds at 30-1, but if Chromie can’t pull it off, I hope Ria does.

My pick to show is Ride on Curlin (odds 10-1), although he not only drew the widest post position (10), but he’s in for a rude surprise when he’s mounted this time by Joel Rosario and sees his Derby jockey, Calvin Borel, on Ria Antonia’s back.

Another horse to watch is Pablo Del Monte in pp 9 (odds 20-1). He had earned a last-minute spot in the Derby when Hopportunity got scratched, but took a pass. More rested between his races, he’ll be fresher than Chromie, but does he have what it takes to win a Triple Crown race?

May the best horse win, and all cross the finish line safely.

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6 Responses to A Cat Picks the 2014 Preakness

  1. adele says:

    Adele, at my Kentucky Derby party, we weren’t very scientific; each of us put $5 in a hat & drew a horse’s name from another hat. I drew California Chrome and won about $80, Since I rarely win anything, I’ll continue to dance with the one, who brung me and be rooting for California Chrome — although I do like the idea of a girl beating the boys, and Ria Antonia does have Calvin Borel riding her, so maybe . . .
    BTW, my sister has already asked, “Who does the cat like for the Preakness?”

  2. catsworking says:

    Adele, congratulations! Even if it was just the luck of the draw. I’m certainly no Fred (rest his soul) at picking winners, except when my horse Animal Kingdom won both the Derby and the Preakness. That was a good year…

    That’s the thing about horses. They are totally unpredictable. No matter how much you study the bloodlines and past performance, on race day, the winner depends on which horse feels like winning. I guess that’s why I like them. They’re cat-like in that nobody’s the boss of them.

  3. FAW says:

    Congratulations to Adele! She got off her high horse & is selecting EVERYMANS’ horse!!!!!!

  4. catsworking says:

    FAW, I don’t know what you mean by “getting off my high horse,” since nobody knew which horse might win the Derby, so any one of them was appropriate to be selected a favorite.

    We cats are sitting here shaking our heads at your hostility. Or maybe you’re trying to be funny. Can’t tell.

  5. adele says:

    So today, I heard that California Chrome would be allowed to race in the Belmont, despite the fact that he wears horsey Breathe Right strips. As a fellow sinus suffer, this makes me root for him all the more, although it sounds like the Belmont will be a tough race.

  6. catsworking says:

    Yes, I’m very relieved about that. Karen wears Breathe Right strips all the time (the pollen here is KILLER) and we never notice any difference in her performance. In fact, I never noticed them on Chromie’s nose!

    Belmont will be grueling because the track is so long. I wish they would space these races apart more so the horses could get a break.

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