Justify Odds-on Favorite at 7

Kentucky Derby winner Justify is bathed following

Justify, the Bob Baffert-trained victor of the Kentucky Derby and the heavy favorite coming into the second leg of the Triple Crown, overcame a rainy day and a sloppy track almost two weeks ago, winning by two and a half lengths.

If he wins it, and he's a favorite to do just that, then the public's interest in horse racing will be peaked as he takes his Triple Crown quest into the final jewel race - the Belmont Stakes. He will depart from the No. 7 post position. The Bob Baffert-trained colt won the Derby May 5 in those very conditions.

Justify drew the seventh post position in the eight-horse field on Wednesday, and his main competition for the Preakness looks to be Good Magic as the +300 second choice.

Fast-forward to the upcoming Preakness and, in a different twist to the events of 1972, Justify will be facing a rival who is owned by two members of the Derby winner's current ownership team.

"I like being the favorite", Baffert said Wednesday, according to ESPN. I like knowing that I have a chance to win.

Baffert joked that being such a heavy favorite puts more pressure on Justify, who held off a hard-charging Good Magic in the Derby.

Weather forecasts indicate Saturday's Preakness Stakes will be run on a wet Pimlico Race Course track as well. "Coming in here I feel the same as I did when I won it with the other ones".


As he did with 2015 Triple Crown victor American Pharoah, Baffert chose to put Justify in the middle of the Preakness barn rather than in Stall 40, the traditional home of the Derby victor. Good Magic, which finished second in Kentucky, has the next-best odds of winning. The other five are 15-1 or higher: Lone Sailor (post 2, 15-1); Tenfold (post 6) and Bravazo (post 8) are 20-1 and Sporting Chance (post 3) and Diamond Cove (post 4) are 30-1.

Justify will race in the seven position. "I was hoping they would scratch him and run Upper Case, but they said they would regret it for the rest of their lives if "Riva" ran second to Upper Case".

"Bob Baffert and I are very close friends, but I'm going to try every way I can to beat him", Lukas said.

Diamond King, victor of the Federico Tesio Stakes at Laurel Park, will also take a shot at the Derby champion, starting from the No. 4 post and listed as a 30-1 long shot.

Walden added that at this point in the Triple Crown, it's premature to talk about sweeping the Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes.

Lukas was actually feeling pretty good about both of his horses until he saw Justify get off the van in the barn area a little more than an hour before the draw.

The odds are against that, unless a bruised heel Justify was treated for acts up after training on an off track at Pimlico.

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