Bleacher Report Preakness 2023 Picks & Predictions: National Treasure Will Battle Mage

The Preakness Stakes barn

Bleacher Report’s picks and predictions for the 2023 Preakness Stakes have been released. Find Bleacher Report’s Preakness 2023 picks and predictions for the second leg of the Triple Crown.

The 148th running of the Preakness Stakes is set for Saturday, May 20, from the Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. All eyes will be on Mage, who will look to continue its run at the Triple Crown after winning the Kentucky Derby.

Here are Bleacher Report’s picks and predictions for the 2023 Preakness Stakes.

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Bleacher Report’s Preakness 2023 Picks & Predictions

The oddsmakers at BetOnline currently have Mage (-135) as the favorite to win the Preakness. Jake Rill at Bleacher Report believes Mage has what it takes to win and will not be surprised if he does. However, Rill has his eyes on National Treasure to beat out Mage. “There are some other strong horses in the field, but National Treasure and Mage will prove to be the two best, with the former outlasting the latter,” Rill said.

National Treasure (+270)

National Treasure is gaining momentum as the pick to take down Mage. The three-year-old is coming off a disappointing fourth-place finish in Santa Anita Derby. In fact, National Treasure has only one first-place finish in five starts. However, the horse has reportedly been training well. His jockey, John R. Velazquez, has won three Kentucky Derbys and two Belmonts. National Treasure’s trainer, Bob Baffert, has seven Preakness victories, tied for the most all-time.

“Despite National Treasure’s lack of previous wins, he has a lot of potential,” Rill said. “The prediction here is that’s what National Treasure will do and earn the biggest victory of his career. And he’ll do so by passing Mage in one of the final turns, before holding him off down the final stretch.”

Mage (-135)

Rill knows Mage will be a popular pick to win, but Rill believes it will run second to National Treasure. Mage backed up its reputation for having great acceleration by storming up the final stretch to win the Kentucky Derby. Mage should be fast out of the gate. It’s the only horse in the field who ran the Kentucky Derby, so he’s battle-tested in big races.

“It’s quite possible Mage will win on Saturday, and he should be among the horses near the front of the field for much of the race at least,” Rill said. “But it’s not a lock that he’ll emerge victorious.”

Preakness Stakes Betting Guides 2023

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