05/16/2012 6:30PM

2012 Preakness: This time, Bodemeister's speed may carry all the way

Barbara D. Livingston
Bodemeister, with trainer Bob Baffert at Pimlico, is the morning-line Preakness favorite.

BALTIMORE – He was second at the Kentucky Derby, but he will be the first choice at the Preakness Stakes. Despite being defeated as the favorite two weeks ago in the first leg of the Triple Crown, Bodemeister will be the favorite again on Saturday in the 137th Preakness Stakes at Pimlico, in which he will try to deny the Derby winner, I’ll Have Another, from advancing to the June 9 Belmont Stakes with a chance to complete the Triple Crown.

Bodemeister drew post 7, and I’ll Have Another landed post 9, on Wednesday evening when posts were drawn for the 1 3/16-mile Preakness, which has a field of 11. Daddy Nose Best is between them, in post 8.

[PREAKNESS STAKES: PPs, contender profiles, video, latest news]

The lone development Wednesday to the field composition was the defection of Guyana Star Dweej, who would have been a decided longshot in the $1 million race.

Frank Carulli, who makes the morning line at Pimlico, and Mike Watchmaker, Daily Racing Form’s national handicapper, agree that Bodemeister, trained by Bob Baffert, will be the favorite. Carulli has Bodemeister at 8-5, with Watchmaker assigning Bodemeister a price of 9-5.

I’ll Have Another is 5-2 on Carulli’s line, but Watchmaker has the gap between the favorite and second choice much closer, pegging I’ll Have Another at 2-1.

Both Carulli and Watchmaker have Creative Cause, who was fifth in the Derby, and Went the Day Well, who was fourth, the co-third choices at 6-1.

Doug O’Neill, who trains I’ll Have Another, was happy with the draw.

“Being outside of Bodemeister I think is a good thing,” O’Neill said.

Bodemeister ran a remarkable race in the Derby, in which he carved out swift fractions, kicked away at the top of the stretch, but then ran out of gas in the final furlong. After successive quarter-miles of 22.32 seconds, 23.17, and 24.41 – for a six-furlong split of 1:09.80, the fourth fastest in Derby history – Bodemeister ran his fourth quarter in 25.39, and his final quarter in approximately 26.80.

“The way he moves over the ground, he doesn’t look like he’s going that fast,” Baffert said. “At the quarter pole, it looked like he was giving everyone the slip. At the eighth pole, he had a little surge. But at the sixteenth pole, he was stopping.”

The fast fractions were the result of two things – Baffert and jockey Mike Smith agreed to seize the opportunity if Bodemeister broke well, which he did, but they were pressured by the sprinter Trinniberg, who faded to 17th, 30 lengths behind Bodemeister.

There is no Trinniberg in this race, so the pace should be far more advantageous to Bodemeister.

“Looking at it over and over,” Smith said, “maybe there’s some things you’d change, but if not for Trinniberg, I think we’d have stolen the race. I’m proud of him. That sucker ran good.”

What finally sold Baffert on running, though, is that Bodemeister bounced out of the race in good shape, good enough to wheel him back in two weeks. Baffert has won the Preakness five times, twice with horses – Lookin at Lucky and Point Given – who redeemed themselves after failing as the favorite in the Derby.

“After the race, he cooled out really quick,” Baffert said Wednesday. “His hair and everything looks good.”

Bodemeister will have quite the entourage on Saturday. In addition to Bode Baffert, the trainer’s 7-year-old son, for whom Bodemeister is named, the rooting section will also include skier Bode Miller, for whom Bode Baffert was named.

Bodemeister arrived at Pimlico at 4 p.m. Wednesday following a flight from Louisville. The flight originated in California, where Creative Cause is based, and stopped in Kentucky to pick up horses traveling from Churchill Downs to Pimlico for the weekend, including Preakness runners Cozzetti and Daddy Nose Best.

After Bodemeister was led off the van to the stakes barn, Baffert himself walked the horse around the shed row, but after one lap, he began to fade. Baffert, not Bodemeister.

“The over-under is three laps,” said Baffert, who suffered a heart attack in late March in Dubai. “I picked the wrong horse. He’s dragging me around here.”

Went the Day Well arrived at Pimlico earlier in the day from the nearby Fair Hill Training Center, where he has been based since the Derby.

On Wednesday morning, I’ll Have Another had another strong training session here. He galloped nearly two miles, including a spirited quarter-mile through the stretch the second and final time. He was clocked by Daily Racing Form going from the eighth pole to the seven-eighths pole in 28.11 seconds, faster than a two-minute clip.

“He looks fantastic, has great energy,” O’Neill said. “He’s maintaining that beautiful, long stride.”

The Preakness will be the 11th race on a 13-race card that begins at 10:30 a.m. Eastern. Post time for the Preakness is listed as 6:18 p.m. It is the second half of a double wager that begins with the Pimlico Special on Friday.

The Preakness will be televised live by NBC, in a two-hour telecast beginning at 4:30 p.m. The NBC Sports Network will televise two hours of the Preakness undercard, beginning at 2:30 p.m., and there will be a half-hour post race show on NBCSN beginning at 6:30.

The forecast from Weather.com for Saturday is for an ideal day, with a high temperature of 79 degrees and no chance of rain.

– additional reporting by David Grening

Preakness Stakes (G1), Post Time: 6:05 ET Saturday

Purse: $1,000,000; 1 3/16 miles





Last Race




Tiger Walk

I. Correas

R. Dominguez

Wood Memorial, 4th




Teeth of the Dog

M. Matz

J. Bravo

Wood Memorial, 3rd





C. Grove

J. Santiago

Canonero II, 1st





R. Dutrow, Jr.

J. Alvarado

Patsyprospect, 1st




Went The Day Well

H. Motion

J. Velazquez

Kentucky Derby, 4th




Creative Cause

M. Harrington

J. Rosario

Kentucky Derby, 5th





B. Baffert

M. Smith

Kentucky Derby, 2nd




Daddy Nose Best

S. Asmussen

J. Leparoux

Kentucky Derby, 10th




I'll Have Another

D. O'Neill

M. Gutierrez

Kentucky Derby, 1st





D. Lukas

C. Nakatani

Kentucky Derby, 11th





D. Romans

J. Lezcano

Arkansas Derby, 4th




Jack More than 1 year ago
Baffert replacing Martin Garcia with Mike Smith that's a REAL JOKE, it's ALREADY cost him the DERBY...SO lets go Mike Smith I know at Pimlico you can go 44 to the half and lets get 1:08 at the 3/4.. Bob you NEED help...And lets NOT forget people it's the MEXICAN labor force that MAKES a Trainer's barn sucessful....Not a pretty face or a PHONEY smile...
mace More than 1 year ago
Champs I got a 10 cent super bet I think for $14.30 very formful but retains a possibilty of a good payoff because of the structure.With that as a base I will cover accordingly.When those women of ill repute come back with my car and the goods will post on here for my buddies,Oh on second thought when they get back I will probably focus on the goods so be back with the bet after next sunrise.
earl More than 1 year ago
How many times will Shackleford/Bodemeister be compared on the coverage. Well last year Shackleford won it on the front therefore this year Bodemiester will be a lock. Yet, funny I remember Shackleford going into the gate and the NB C coverage amping up about Shackleford being rank-ready to bolt-not ready. The basically were making Shackleford out to be Life at Ten part two. It was great to see Shackleford win. And Shame On NB C for basically wishing for something Negative would happen to Shackleford so they could act like they were on top of it.
Matthew Sanchez More than 1 year ago
went the day well.. all the way!!!! should make it look easy!! gud luck 2 all n ur opinions
Jack More than 1 year ago
Rob Beaudoin More than 1 year ago
so the first choice over the 2nd choice over the 3rd choice over the 5th choice.... WOW. Now that's hanicapping!! That tri would pay 45 for 2 bux....
Matthew Sanchez More than 1 year ago
try 5/ 6-8-9/6-8-9-10 for $5.. total $60 n $40 win on went the day well total 1000
Mike Chapman More than 1 year ago
John Jenkinson, your right on. Loved the Dutrow juice. I think "Bode" is going to be a star and wins the Preakness easy. I like "Went The Day Well" to make a good showing, Motion is awesome. If "I'll Have Another"...Cookie, wins then lets all have another..Drink, and root for aTriple Crown, would be great for the connections of "I'll Have Another" all around, and THE SPORT OF HORSE RACING
rob More than 1 year ago
is it just me or does bode look thin in this pic with baffert?
Stephen Thompson More than 1 year ago
it's just you. He looks super!
Grass Is Greener More than 1 year ago
He looks great. Focus on just Bode, ignore Baffert's gut.
Ron Fox More than 1 year ago
This is two races within one. A match between IHA and Bode. the others running several lenths back for show $. Look for IHA to lay right next to Bode and outfinish him to win.
Mooch J More than 1 year ago
Don't you think If IHA lays right next to Bode he won't have as much kick? I hope the connections of Bode and IHA don't think this is a match race. Strange things happen when you are trying too hard to win the battle, you soon discover you've both lost the war. I don't see either of them getting tricky, Bode's weapon is speed and IHA is better off tracking Bode. They might both just gallop along til the stretch, then they battle
Grass Is Greener More than 1 year ago
At the 3 quarter pole, IHA was 6L off Bode but he covered about 25ft more ground so his average speed and energy spent translates to about 3L off without the ground loss. Right past the quarter pole, IHA is 3L behind but traveled 33ft more ground so his average speed and energy spent at the blazing 1:35 and 1/5th one mile time was higher than Bode at that point (energy spent assumes similar body mass). With no ground loss in the Preakness, IHA could glue to Bode without spending more energy. Will Bode run him to the ground? Doubtful, IHA has the look of a really good one who could track any pace.
chad mc rory More than 1 year ago
No matter from who, or how many, when he backs outa there Bode gets oogatz...
Michael Ciasca More than 1 year ago
Who's going to challenge Bodemeister on the front? Looks like he will have any easy lead once again, and this time Smith will try to slow down the fractions. And with 1/16 mile shorter distance, it seems this will favor Bodemeister, it will be very tough to beat him. I think I'll Have Another will be sitting in 2nd eyeing the leader & with his big heart and long stride he will get up to win the Preakness. This should be a great race!
john jenkinson More than 1 year ago
CREATIVE CAUSE hangs more than John Holmes in a 70's porno movie. Watch his races in the BCJ, SAD and the KD. Was in position to win all 3 and had no finishing punch. IHA has run 3 hard races in a row, especially last two. BODE cantered around Oaklawn in AD and got cooked in KD. Give him any kind of breather on this shorter stretch and he will wire these. look out for the late run from WTDW. He will be closer like he was in the Spiral. Dutrow juice gives the NYB a shot to hit the board
Mooch J More than 1 year ago
I agree. I see it Bode wiring this field with IHA 2nd. CC "hanging" on for 3rd and WTDW getting up for 4th. Very chalky but I can't see it any other way.
Grass Is Greener More than 1 year ago
In a field of this size, it has been statistically proven that the 3rd and 4th place finishers are almost always random. You can only handicap the first two finishers. And the way you handicap the first two finishers is by identify all the horses who could possibly win or run second in the race, and cover them all. Betting on horses is not a get rich quick scheme. If it's that easy, we'd all be rich by now.
Mike Chapman More than 1 year ago
Douglas Rutherford More than 1 year ago
Well , I see where all your loose change goes : right to the Adult booth huh . I had to look up the word John Holmes ! Ha Ha Haaaaaaaa I honestly thought the name was a horse . Hey : not everyone has a sick mind . But im happy for you , that you have a second hobby