05/20/2011 1:41PM

Friday Update From Pimlico

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Friday morning’s weather forecast here in Baltimore called for a good chance of afternoon thunderstorms with the potential for heavy rain in spots. But an updated forecast and a recent look at the radar for this area suggests that we might dodge a weather bullet.

One thing is for sure: The rain this area has already received this week has left the turf courses slow and deep. You can tell that from the fractions and times of Friday’s second and third races, which were run on turf. Of course, the off turf doesn’t mean anything when it comes to the Preakness (and a forecast for sun on Saturday means the track will be fast for the Preakness), but it is still meaningful. Shared Account and Paddy O’Prado, two horses who figure to be major players in the female and male turf divisions this year, are scheduled to make their 2011 debuts here Saturday in the Gallorette Handicap and Dixie Stakes. Even allowing for good drying out weather on Saturday, these two are likely to have to launch their campaigns on a demanding course with plenty of give to it.

Instead of filing regular updates here in this blog spot (Steven Crist has that well covered, anyway), I’ll be delving more into video blogging this Preakness trip. I taped spots with Nick Zito and Jerry Bailey this morning which I found interesting, and you can watch them here. Other video spots will follow.