There have been many comparisons between American Pharoah and Justify in the two weeks between the Kentucky Derby and the 143rd Preakness on Saturday.
Most of them have been raised with trainer Bob Baffert, who in 2015 helped American Pharoah become the first Triple Crown Winner since Affirmed in 1978.
By Saturday night, there could also be similarities with the wet and wild conditions in which both horses won the Preakness.
Three years after the favorite 1-5 American Pharoah won by 7 lengths on a track of the Pimilco racecourse that became an equine sliding and sliding, Justify will go out as a 1-2 favorite in the field of eight horses.
Comes after the undefeated 3-year-old, who did not race like a 2-year-old child, won in similarly adverse conditions at Churchill Downs.
Shortly after the Baltimore horse arrived on Wednesday, Baffert joked that he could consult with a "good meteorologist" on when he should work Justifying before the race.
"I need a window," said Baffert, well aware of unfavorable forecasts. "We're all in the same boat."
Although there seems to have been enough water this week to float an ark, Baffert does not seem to be worried about the possibility of another wet and sloppy trip on Saturday.
Asked if the forecast makes him a little uneasy, Baffert said: "No, that's something you can not control." The point is, I think he just puts more pressure on the track [superintendent] to make sure it's safe. "
At just 28, Chris Bosley started working in that position for the Maryland Jockey Club last month after passing the previous five years in the same job at Timonium, where his father, Chuck, retired after 35 years as superintendent of track maintenance.
"There are ideal conditions for track , but we are doing everything we can, "Bosley said in front of his office on Thursday when the rain came down." We are taking out floats and trying to carry it out. seal, squeeze below [the surface] so horses do not run while you say slip and slide. It is what it is. "
To seal the track, which is made of a combination of sand, clay and silt, Bosley said, the floats, weighing about a ton, leave behind the tractors every morning when the horses they are not working and after each race on Thursday, Friday and Saturday
"As we drag [the floats] they compress what we call the cushion: what sand is and what horses are running on, and that makes it so strong as possible, "said Bosley." Squeeze the water and run down the runway bench to the gutter. "
According to Bosley, the runway has already received about 3 to 4 inches of rain this week.
"It also holds up as can be expected in this kind of conditions," Bosley said. "People ask you in this climate, what is the condition of the track? It is careless, but careless can mean many different things. You run the floats and pack it, and it will keep it in good condition. It's all about the horses Try to do it as fair and as safe as possible "
Baffert He said in Wednesday's raffle that Justify is the type of horse that "brings the track with him," which means he can run on any kind of surface, given the conditions at Churchill Downs two weeks ago, it seems unlikely that the surface of the Saturday does not have a big impact on the result.
Justify's performance at this year's Kentucky Derby, similar to that of American Pharoah three years ago at Pimlico, almost makes the term "mudder" seem obsolete.
" All the horses, all have to cross the same track, no matter what the conditions are, "Bosley said." Usually, the best horses, no matter what the condition, Generally, some horses adapt better to the conditions of the track than others, but the best horses can overcome any track condition and reach the top. "
Scott Blasi, the assistant coach of 20-1 long shots, said the horse's father, winner of the 2007 Preakness Curlin, ran well in the mud during his career.Good Magic, which will come out as the second favorite behind Justify, also he was a descendant of Curlin.
"Curlin enjoyed the mud," Blasi said in the draw after the position. "He won a Classic Breeders Cup. I think many of their descendants have run well on sloppy tracks. I definitely think he plays in today's races and handicaps. "
Searching through the gallery window on the wet track on Thursday morning during the Alibi Breakfast, the Quip Rodolphe Brisset's trainer said that the muddy surface looks worse than it really is.Although this is his first Preakness, Brisset took one of his foals to Pimlico for the Black Eyed Susan a couple of years ago.
" It's not as bad as it seems, "said Brisset, a former jockey in his native France." It's when it's well sealed, it's not really bad at all. the same for everyone, we know that the Derby winner liked mud, and we know that he must win. We'll see what happens. "
In a national teleconference last week, six times Coach D winner of the Preakness, Wayne Lukas said the conditions in Pimlico and Churchill The decreases have become more similar in recent years, which is a good omen for Justify if the forecast of rain remains for Saturday.
"I would not worry too much about the surface in my handicap and if a horse could handle it or not. It is very, very similar. And I think a horse that can handle Churchill will probably handle Pimlico quite well, even if it's dry or wet, "Lukas said.
Three years ago, after his horse, Mr. Z seems to slide down the opposite straight to Moving from a close second after a distant fifth behind American Pharoah, Lukas said he could not think of many races he had experienced in more difficult conditions.
When asked if he thought the conditions that day were unsafe for the horses, fans had to leave the grandstand due to lightning – Lukas said, "Take a big storm to stop a horse race."