“Derby” Bill Watson’s Preakness Picks For Saturday October 3

The following appeared in the Richmond Times Dispatch October 2. The 145th Preakness will go to post at 5:36 PM on Saturday October 3, highlighting a stakes filled card at Baltimore’s Pimlico Racecourse.

Fans can wager the Preakness at any Rosie’s Gaming Emporium in Richmond, New Kent, Vinton and Hampton, at any VA-Horseplay OTB in Henrico (Breaker’s Sports Grille), Chesapeake (Buckets Bar & Grill) and Collinsville (The Windmill OTB Sports Grill), and online via TVG.com, Xpressbet.com, Twinspires.com and NYRABets.com.  The OTB at Breakers has an outdoor walk-up betting tent for players convenience.


Saturday’s post time: 5:45 p.m. TV: NBC, 4:30 Where: Baltimore

“Derby Bill” Watson was the official handicapper at Colonial Downs for six years and has been a professional handicapper for 22. He can be heard on “Off to the Races Radio” each Saturday at 10 a.m. on 950. His Preakness superfecta: No. 7 NY Traffic; No. 3 Art Collector; No. 8 Max Player; No. 9 Authentic.

PP Horse Trainer Jockey Odds

1. Excession Steve Asmussen Sheldon Russell 30-1

The good: finished second at 82-1 in the Rebel Stakes. The bad: that was nearly seven months ago. The ugly: His best two races were in slop.

2. Mr. Big News Bret Calhoun Gabriel Saez 12-1

Won Oaklawn Stakes, third in Kentucky Derby both at more than 40-1. Has went off at 34-1 in six of his eight races.

3. Art Collector Tommy Drury Jr. Brian Hernandez Jr. 5-2

4-4 record in 2020 makes backers hope odds stay 5-2 for the son of 2006 Preakness winner Bernardini.

4. Swiss Skydiver Kenny McPeek Robby Albarado 6-1

Filly chased by 10 colts always adds excitement. She has early speed — her best chance.

5. Thousand Words Bob Baffert Florent Geroux 6-1

Baffert’s second string flipped in Derby paddock. Fans will not flip bets turning 6-1 into a 12-1 by post.

6. Jesus’ Team Jose D’Angelo Jevian Toledo 30-1

Holy Toledo! Owners shelled out late $25K entry looking for a miracle? Last win was a $25K claimer.

7. NY Traffic Saffie Joseph Jr. Horacio Karamanos 15-1

Sharp since disappointing run in Derby. Karamanos —”Special” K — is the all-time winning jockey at Colonial Downs.

8. Max Player Steve Asmussen Paco Lopez 15-1

Only colt that set to compete in all the Triple Crown races; third at Belmont for $100K, fifth at Derby for $90K.

9. Authentic Bob Baffert John Velazquez 9-5

Baffert, with seven Preakness wins, has Derby winner “chalk” for jockey John Velazquez.

10. Pneumatic Steve Asmussen Joe Bravo 20-1

Asmussen, a Hall of Fame trainer with 9,000-plus winners, has three Preakness victories, and this stalker may be biggest upset chance.

11. Liveyourbeastlife Jorge Abreu Trevor McCarthy 30-1

Post position is no help for longshot; Trevor McCarthy must make late run at huge price.+1