05/16/2013 1:49PM

Preakness Stakes: Orb's rail draw hardly kiss of death

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BALTIMORE - While it is certainly noteworthy that only one horse has won the Preakness from the rail since 1961 – Tabasco Cat in the 1994 – the rail draw shouldn’t scare supporters of Orb to the nearest bridge.

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Since Bally Ache won the 1960 Preakness from the rail as the 8-5 second choice, only nine horses that drew the rail in the last 52 runnings of the Preakness were sent off odds of 9-2 or shorter. Among the more noteworthy rail losers were Top Knight (2nd at 5-2 in 1969), Sham (2nd at 3-1 in 1973), and Bet Twice (2nd at 9-2 in 1987).

While trainer Shug McGaughey said that the rail wouldn’t have been his first choice, he said Thursday “that won’t be the reason” if Orb loses.