Asmussen key to multi-race wagers on Preakness Day

Profile Picture: James Scully

May 21st, 2016

Saturday’s Preakness Day program at Pimlico offers plenty of multi-race opportunities, including a trio of Pick 4s (races 3, 6 & 10) and a pair of Pick 5s (races 2 & 9).

My strategy is to identify potential singles and spread in the more contentious events.

Race 5 is the Maryland Sprint (G3) for 3yos and Race 9 is the Chick Lang for older horses. Both will be run at 6-furlongs and I like a Steve Asmussen-trained sprinter in each race.

Maryland Sprint, Race 5: Cinco Charlie (#4) looks like the controlling speed from post 4 and likes it wet (2-for-2 on off tracks). His only two losses this year have come at the hands of Subtle Indian, who is 4-for-4 this year, and Cinco Charlie has a winning attitude with 8 tallies from 15 starts. I’m tabbing the 4yo for a wire-to-wire victory.

Chick Lang, Race 9: Counterforce (#6) exits a convincing victory over I Will Score and is bred for the slop. The up-and-coming 3yo can prove best from just off the pace.

Other thoughts

Here are a few horses I’m looking at on the Preakness undercard:

He’ll Play brings improving form into the James Murphy (6th race) and the Larry Jones trainee can continue to show more returning to turf.

In the Sir Barton (11th race), Dazzling Gem should be able to settle into an ideal stalk-and-pounce trip and should find this level of company to his advantage after being excluded from the Kentucky Derby due to insufficient points.

The Dixie (12th race) features several contenders returning from a long layoff including Ring Weekend, who came off the shelf to post an outstanding win in the Frank E. Kilroe Mile (G1) last year. Graham Motion wins at a 21% off an extended layoff and Ring Weekend has the opportunity to develop into a top turf performer at age 5 if he can remain healthy. I’m expecting a strong showing.

Best of luck!