Commentary

Analyzing the Preakness field

Animal Kingdom will likely run, but probably won't go off as the favorite

Updated: May 8, 2011, 5:40 PM ET
By Lane Gold | Special to ESPN Insider
Animal KingdomAP Photo/Morry GashAnimal Kingdom had a great run at the Kentucky Derby. Can he win the Preakness as well?

With all the Kentucky Derby fanfare and hoopla behind us, it is already time to look ahead to the second leg of the Triple Crown and who will try and step up and beat Animal Kingdom.

Typically, the Preakness attracts a handful of Derby participants, as well as a group of "new shooters" that either could not get into the crowded Derby field or elected to wait until mid-May to tackle the best 3-year-old horses in the country. Unlike the Derby, the Preakness is limited to 14 horses.

No Preakness field would be complete without the Derby winner and Animal Kingdom appears to be packing bags for Baltimore. However, there may be up to nine new candidates attempting to knock off the Derby winner. Here is a breakdown of what the Pimlico field may look like:

Derby runners

Animal Kingdom -- The Derby winner came out in great shape and will pack up for his Maryland home on Tuesday. His owner indicated on Sunday that they are "pretty sure" they will try and capture the next leg of the Triple Crown.

The colt, who had never raced on dirt in four previous starts, ran the best race of his life on Saturday. He was sent off at odds of 20-1 based mostly on the fact he had no dirt experience. You can be certain that his odds will be lower at the Preakness, but he still may not be the favorite.

Lane Gold

ESPN Insider

A lifelong horse racing fan, Lane Gold hosts a weekly radio show called the Kentucky Winner's Circle and has a horse racing blog.