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Medina Spirit heads down the horse path from the stakes barn to the gap on Friday morning.

Preakness Friday Photos

Date: 05/14/2021

Some of the Preakness horses were out Friday morning for a last minute tune up before the big day tomorrow. The Pimlico main track was fast on a sunny Friday morning with temperatures in the low 60's during training but warming up to the low 70's as the morning progressed.

Per the condition of entry agreement into Preakness 146 between the Maryland Jockey Club and trainer Bob Baffert reached earlier this week, Baffert trained horses Medina Spirit, Concert Tour and Beautiful Gift underwent three rounds of out-of-competition blood sample testing. The Maryland Racing Commission (MRC) took two samples, one on May 6th and the other on May 10th. A third sample was taken by 1/ST RACING and the Maryland Jockey Club (MJC) on May 11th. The samples were screened for both prohibited and therapeutic substances and were reported clear for all horses.

Here are photos of 9 Preakness horses and 1 Black-Eyed Susan filly from Friday. Click on the small one to see the larger version.


Concert Tour galloped 1 1/4 miles Friday morning at Pimlico Race CourseGary and Mary West's Concert Tour is rated second at 5-2 in the morning line. In his most recent start he was third as the favorite in the Arkansas Derby (G1) on April 10. Mike Smith, the 55-year-old Hall of Fame jockey, will ride Concert Tour for the first time from Post No. 10.
Crowded Trade was first out for trainer Chad Brown at 6am and galloped his usual 1 1/4 miles. Jose Hernandez, Brown's assistant who is caring for the horses here, said he would like to see Crowded Trade, who was third in the April 3 Wood Memorial (G2) at Aqueduct, race closer to the pace. Risk Taking, he said, should be doing his best running late. He also ran in the Wood and was a disappointing seventh as the 2-1 favorite.
France Go de Ina went through his final preparations Friday morning, walking on the track with exercise rider Masaki Takano aboard. The son of Will Take Charge then did some schooling in the starting gate, which was an important priority. In his last start, France Go de Ina broke poorly from the gate in the March 27 UAE Derby (G2) in Dubai and finishing a non-threatening sixth. Friday, the horse stood in the gate and it was hand opened for him to walk out. "We wanted him to get used to people standing around him." trainer Hideyuki Mori said.
Keepmeinmind marks the first Preakness appearance for both trainer Robertino Diodoro and jockey David Cohen. "What needs to happen is what it looks like is going to happen on paper," Diodoro said. "We just need it to happen on dirt now, where we need Midnight Bourbon, we need both of [trainer Bob] Baffert's horses (to go out to the lead) to get a little pace to run out. But definitely with his running style, we need a pace to run at."
Medina Spirit galloped 1 1/4 miles Friday morning at Pimlico Race Course under the direction of Jimmy Barnes, trainer Bob Baffert's longtime assistant. Medina Spirit, owned by Zedan Racing Stables, is rated as the 9-5 favorite in the field of 10 after leading the May 1 Kentucky Derby (G1) from start to finish. "We had a little bit of a lighter day for them today because they have such a big day tomorrow," Barnes said. "Both horses came off the track fresh and happy and looking awesome."
Midnight Bourbon was a little spicy on Friday morning. He galloped over the Pimlico surface the day before Saturday's Preakness Stakes (G1). Irad Ortiz Jr. will be aboard for the first time. The defending three-time Eclipse Award-winning jockey will seek his first Preakness victory after finishing off the board in two prior mounts. "He's a fun horse to train," trainer Steve Asmussen said. "The horse is obviously very strong-minded and willful. But he's exciting to be around. He's extremely physical. He's a gorgeous horse to watch. Like I said, we're very optimistic as horsemen. The giddy part, or the humorous part, was that less than two weeks after the disappointment of the Derby, here we are crazy enough to think we can do it again."
Ram went to the track for light training Friday morning at Pimlico Race Course in preparation for a start in Saturday's Preakness Stakes (G1) for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Lukas, 85, is aiming for his record-tying seventh Preakness victory with Ram, a son of 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah. "We tapered off a little today. We just went a mile," Lukas said. "Tapered off and let him get his energy. He had a lot of energy, too. He was sharp today. He's gotten better every single day on his energy level since we're been here."
Risk Taking galloped 1 1/4 miles at Pimlico, the same as Thursday while preparing for starts in Saturday's Preakness Stakes (G1). Jose Hernandez, Brown's assistant who is caring for the horses here, said they are both ready to roll. "They are doing good, and they are training good," Hernandez said. "We will see what happens on Saturday. Everything they have done here, they have done well."
Rombauer earned a fees-paid entry into the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown by winning the Feb. 13 El Camino Real Derby, a Preakness ‘Win & In' event, at Golden Gate Fields. Most recently, he finished third in the Blue Grass (G2) on April 3 at Keeneland.. He is the first starter in a Triple Crown race for is owners Diane and John Fradkin. "That's exciting," John Fradkin said. "Generally speaking, we think of ourselves as small-time, commercial breeders. We aim to sell our progeny. This is a rarity. In the past we've pretty much only raced horses that we couldn't sell. This is kind of an exception, just the way it all transpired."

Black-Eyed Susan

Army Wife was out this morning for a last minute gallop and later that afternoon she won the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) for trainer Mike Maker who also won the Pimlico Special (G3) with Last Judgment.

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