Marcus Hersh Preakness Picks & Predictions: Why underdog Perform wins

Preakness Stakes contender Perform practices.

Marcus Hersh has been a regular writer for the Daily Racing Form since 1998. Based in Chicago, Illinois, and New Orleans, Louisiana, Hersh’s 25 years of horse racing expertise is very valuable when making your Preakness picks on Saturday.

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  • 🐴 Event: Preakness Stakes
  • 📅 Date & Time: May 20th, 6:50 pm
  • 🌎 Location: Pimlico Race Course, Baltimore
  • 📺 TV Channel: NBC
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Marcus Hersh 2023 Preakness Picks

Hersh is very well known at Arlington Park, Hawthorne, and Fair Grounds. Picking a horse that is at +1600 may be a little risky, but remember Mage was at +1400 when it won the Kentucky Derby and Rich Strike was at +8000 at Churchill Downs a year ago.

Perform (+1600)

From a statistical standpoint, Perform is not supposed to be very fast. However, he is according to Hersh even though the Beyers numbers state otherwise. Hersh has been very impressed with the horse’s overall improvement and the turn he made earlier this season in Tampa. Perform’s win at Laurel Park really impressed Hersh as it came when the horse was initially last.

Mage (-135)

Most everyone is picking Mage to win outright. Not Hersh, however, who is expecting a degree of regression after winning the Kentucky Derby. Two knocks on Mage is the horse’s inexperience and slow starts. The slow start happened at Churchill Downs, and time will tell if it happens at Pimlico.

National Treasure (+300)

Like horse racing experts, Hersh is hesitant about National Treasure because of the horse’s lack of improvement throughout the year. Interestingly, he points to mental limitations as the reason.

Blazing Sevens (+700)

Hersh has the same concerns about Blazing Sevens as National Teasure. He is questioning the horse’s mindset and desire to win the race. Hersh was also not very impressed with Blazing Sevens at the Blue Grass Stakes, a race won by Tapit Trace.



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