Preakness Stakes 2021: The experts’ picks and predictions

Experts handicap Saturday’s 146th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico. Post time is approximately 6:47 p.m.

Vic Cangialosi

The Post’s lead horse racing handicapper

  1. Midnight Bourbon: Pour me another, bartender. We took a shot on Bourbon in the Derby, but the front-runner was forced to run uphill after breaking a step slow. Mike Smith opted off, but Irad Ortiz isn’t exactly a step back. Breaks clean, sits off Bob Baffert’s boys and beats them before the post-race analysis does.
  2. Unbridled Honor: Finished full of run for second money in the shorter Lexington. Long shot may benefit stretching longer for top connections Todd Pletcher and Luis Saez.
  3. Medina Spirit: Awesome winning the Derby on the front end, but he might have had a little help. Wears the asterisk for the second leg as we wait for a final decision on whether he won the first leg. He’s still the one catch and stablemate Concert Tour will most likely let him go early.

Ron Flatter

VSiN. Host of the Ron Flatter Racing Pod

  1. Concert Tour: He is the best active horse for Bob Baffert, who had to be talked out of running him in the Derby. Owner Gary West’s wish is this Street Sense colt’s command. He should lead from gate to wire.
  2. Rombauer: If there is an upset, he will deliver it. All the early speed could burn out, leaving him to pick up the pieces in the stretch.
  3. Midnight Bourbon: He made up a lot of ground to finish sixth in the Derby, where he got what could be kindly called a curious ride after a poor start. He will have neither if he hits the board at Pimlico.

Dave Tuley senior reporter and handicapper

  1. Risk Taking: This Chad Brown-trained colt is flying under the radar and is the best betting value on the board at 15-1 on the morning line. He bobbled at the start of the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct as the favorite and failed to rally, but a return to his prior form puts him right in the mix as he should be able to sit off the pace and be running fastest down the stretch for the upset.
  2. Concert Tour: This was regarded as Baffert’s best 3-year-old for much of the spring, but his owners decided to skip the Derby. Concert Tour should be able to keep Medina Spirit from stealing this one on the lead even though he breaks from the outside No. 10 post.
  3. Midnight Bourbon: After getting bumped at the start of the Derby, Midnight Bourbon dropped 11 lengths off the pace, but he managed to finish a respectable sixth. He’s used to being closer to the pace, so a better break should have him in contention throughout.

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