Tags: Orb | Quest | Triple | Crown

Preakness — and Triple Crown — Slip Away from Orb

Saturday, 18 May 2013 03:39 PM


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Kentucky Derby winner Orb pulled up well short at the Preakness Stakes on Saturday, losing a bid for horse racing's coveted Triple Crown.

Oxbow, who was ridden by three-time Preakness winning jockey Gary Stevens, finished first at Maryland's Pimlico Race Course. The horse had been a longshot with 15-1 odds.

"I couldn't be more pleased with the way he's doing," Orb's trainer, Shug McGaughey, said at his final pre-Preakness media briefing Friday morning. "I can't see any adversity. I would have to think it would take a pretty darn good horse to beat him if he goes over and runs his race."

A win for Orb at the 1  3-16-mile Preakness on Saturday would have set up a Triple Crown try in the Belmont Stakes in three weeks. Orb was the even-money favorite. Racing has not had a Triple Crown champion since Affirmed in 1978.

Orb had a Derby two weeks ago, when jockey Joel Rosario patiently guided the colt from 17th to first in the final half mile over a sloppy track.

In the Preakness, Orb broke from the No. 1 post, a spot that had seen only one winner — Tabasco Cat in 1994 — since 1961.

D. Wayne Lukas, who trained three of the nine entries, including Oxbow, Will Take Charge and Titletown Five, now has six Preakness wins.

"I get paid to spoil dreams," he told NBC. "Unfortunately we go over here and you can't mail them in. It's a different surface and a different time. And you got to line them up and win them."

His victory in the Triple Crown race gives him a record 14 — one more than "Sunny Jim" Fitzsimmons.

Oxbow finished sixth and Will Take Charge finished eighth in the Derby, while Titletown Five ran fourth in the Derby Trial.

"You have to be careful about that much emphasis on one race," Lukas cautioned earlier of Orb's Derby win. "You change the surface, you shorten the race, you put him in the one-hole. These are things he'll have to overcome. He's the best horse. It's his race to lose. But it only takes one horse to spoil your day."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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