Horse racing fans are getting excited for the second part of the Triple Crown, and there is a buzz surrounding the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on Saturday, May 18. The focus now turns to Bob Baffert‘s Muth, who is favored to win against the $3.1 million winner Mystik Dan.

Muth, the winner of the Arkansas Derby, is one of the competitors for the 2024 Preakness Stakes scheduled to take place in Baltimore. At Santa Anita Park, the two-year-old earned the Grade I American Pharoah Stakes in 2023. Muth is currently the clear favorite with odds of 10-11. However, he was not allowed to run in the Kentucky Derby because of his trainer Bob Baffert’s suspension. With odds of 3-1, Mystik Dan is just behind. He defeated Sierra Leone and Forever Young in the 2024 Kentucky Derby, clocking in at 2:03.34.

However, Baffert is now concentrating his efforts on the approaching Preakness Stakes as he prepares Muth and Imagination for the 149th edition of the race. Despite his absence on the ground at the Kentucky Derby, Baffert enjoyed the three-horse photo finish from the comfort of his home in Pasadena. Now, he hopes to increase his stellar record of 8X Preakness victories – the last one achieved last year with National Treasure. The win, however, wasn’t easy for Baffert as one of his other horses, Havnameltdown, was euthanized at Pimlico Race Course ahead of Preakness Stakes.


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Baffert is now ready to take up the new challenge with a formidable field of contenders, including Just Steel, trained by D. Wayne Lukas, who has great experience in the competition. Furthermore, horses trained by D. Wayne Lukas and Steve Asmussen, respectively, such as Seize the Grey and Informed Patriot, add to the thrill. Bob Baffert is confident in his chances since two horses, Muth and Imagination, have been sent in from California. The Preakness Stakes definitely will be a chance for Baffert to strike another win, along with support from Frankie Dettori who is booked on 6-1 chance Imagination.

Why CDI won’t lift Bob Baffert’s ban

Following the events surrounding the 2021 Kentucky Derby, Churchill Downs Incorporated took a strong stand on integrity in horse racing by deciding to extend Bob Baffert’s suspension. The 71-year-old trainer Baffert, whose career has been filled with drama, was given an extra one-year suspension last July, lengthening the two-year penalty that was originally scheduled to end in 2023. The controversy arose from Medina Spirit, Baffert’s 2021 Derby victor, failing to a drug test after the event. The connection between Baffert and Churchill Downs remained tense despite further legal actions, including attempts to fight Medina Spirit’s disqualification and Baffert’s ban. The cold relationship was not much improved by Baffert’s January decision to drop legal proceedings against CDI.

By highlighting accountability and the need to stop such behavior in the future, Churchill Downs Incorporated reaffirmed its pick to extend Bob Baffert’s suspension. The CDI said at the time, “A trainer who is unwilling to accept responsibility for multiple drug test failures in our highest-profile races cannot be trusted to avoid future misconduct.” They further explained that Baffert would not be permitted to enter horses at any racetrack owned by CDI until 2024 and that his status would be reviewed thereafter. This extension is a punitive tactic as well as a way to affect Baffert’s horses’ eligibility for the Derby, which affects the field structure of the race.