Derby Winner Rich Strike Won’t Run Preakness

Rich Strike won’t run Preakness. See what this means for the rest of the field.

Key Points

– Rich Strike, winner of the Kentucky Derby, will not run in the Preakness Stakes, the second leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown.

– Kentucky Derby winners not racing in the Preakness has happened before.

Not Surprising That Rich Strike Won’t Run Preakness

Surprising Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike won’t run the Preakness Stakes, the second leg of horse racing’s Triple Crown.

What’s not surprising is that the Kentucky Derby winner is not racing in the Preakness. There is some precedent. It’s also not surprising to Rich Strike owner Rick Dawson.


The Rich Strike Plan

It had been the plan all along for Rich Strike to race based on what happened with the Kentucky Derby. 

Rich Strike was not going to run at Churchill Downs until just a day before the race. The plan was then to focus on running the Preakness.

That all changed when Rich Strike was added to the Run for the Roses. Dawson and the Rich Strike camp wanted to stick to a schedule where their horse would get five to six weeks of rest between races. 

Running in the Preakness would not afford that kind of rest so Dawson elected to hold his big winner out of the race and focus on the Belmont Stakes, the final leg of the Triple Crown.

How Rich Strike Won the Derby

Rich Strike Won’t Run Preakness

In the history of the Preakness Stakes, there have only been four previous instances where the Kentucky Derby winner has not raced at Pimlico. It seems to be more of a modern problem as three of the four instances happened after 1995.

In two cases, the Kentucky Derby winner retired after winning at Churchill Downs. A third horse fell ill before the Preakness and the fourth and most recent occurrence was similar to Rich Strike. The horse was held out of the Preakness to concentrate on future races.

It’s not the first time this happened as Rich Strike won’t run Preakness.

No Triple Crown in 2022

Once again, there will be no 2022 Triple Crown winner this season. There have only been 13 horses to ever capture the honor with the most recent being Justify.

American Pharoah and Justify captured Triple Crowns within three years of each other. Both horses were trained by Bob Baffert whose horses have won six Kentucky Derbies, seven Preakness Stakes, and three Belmont Stakes.

One for the Record Books

With the time off, Rich Strike will now concentrate on the Belmont Stakes, which takes place on either the first or second Saturday of June. The Belmont is held three weeks after the Preakness.

Rich Strike may get another chance at the record books when he runs at Belmont Park. His win in the Kentucky Derby was one for the ages. 

Winning at Churchill Downs paid out $163.60. Only Donerail paid out higher at $184.90. Donerail was the longest long shot to win the Kentucky Derby doing so in 1913. 

At 80-1 to win, Rich Strike was the biggest longshot since Donerail (91-1).