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The Latest: Official expects track to be fast for Preakness

May 20, 2017

BALTIMORE (AP) — The Latest on the Preakness Stakes (all times local):

3:30 p.m.

Rain that fell Friday afternoon muddied up the main track at Pimlico, but it’s expected to be fast by the time the Preakness goes off around 6:48 p.m. The track was listed as “muddy” for the first few races of the day and upgraded to “good” by the time Race 9 went off.

Maryland Jockey Club president and general manager Sal Sinatra said he was pretty confident the track would be upgraded to “fast” even without sun to dry it out.

“It’s drying out pretty good,” Sinatra said. “I got here this morning and there was a lot of water on it. I think we’re in good shape.”

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3:10 p.m.

Recruiting Ready has extended his winning streak to three in a row with a 3¾-length victory in the $200,000 Chick Lang Stakes for 3-year-old sprinters at Pimlico.

It was also the third win on Saturday for jockey Horacio Karamanos.

Recruiting Ready improved his overall record to 4 for 9 for trainer Horacio DePaz. The colt paid $7.40 to win after running six furlongs in 1:10.35.

Aquamarine, trained by Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, rallied up the rail to get second.

Yoshida added some international flair to the Preakness day undercard with a four-length victory in the $100,000 James W. Murphy Stakes for 3-year-olds on the turf.

The Japan-bred colt got his second win in three starts, all in the U.S., for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.

Ridden by Joel Rosario, Yoshida paid $7.60 to win. He ran a mile in 1:36.83.

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2:20 p.m.

Support has softened for Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming in early wagering for the Preakness.

After opening as the 1-5 favorite on Friday, the colt’s odds have drifted up to 3-2, which translates into roughly a $5 win payoff for each $2 wager.

Classic Empire, who was fourth in the Kentucky Derby, is giving the favorite a run for his money as the 2-1 second choice.

Lookin At Lee, the fast-closing runner-up in the Derby, is third choice at 8-1.

Conquest Mo Money, expected to vie with Always Dreaming on the early lead, is fourth choice at 9-1.

The other six horses are all at double-digit odds.

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1:54 p.m.

This is not your father’s Preakness Day infield. Heck, it’s not even your big brother’s infield.

A food court? A DJ spinning electronic dance tunes? No lines for beer?

It’s been a long time since fans were allowed to bring their own kegs into Pimlico on the day of the Preakness.

Now, fans can receive endless refills of modestly sized mugs or buy drinks of Jack Daniel’s whiskey at $10 a pop.

The change has certainly made it a safer environment. But it’s also much more drab than in the crazy days when the infield mascot was named “Kegasus.”

Instead of breaking legs running over portable toilets, the millennials are buying turkey legs.

Oh, and there’s this: More people are vaping than smoking cigars.

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1:25 p.m.

Everything Lovely has kicked off the Preakness Stakes undercard with a front-running victory in the $100,000 Very One for filly and mare turf sprinters at Pimlico.

The 5-year-old trained by Kate Demasi grabbed hold of the softened course rated good Saturday following heavy rain a day earlier. It was her sixth win in 20 starts, and a sharp rebound from last year when she finished 11th in this race.

Javier Castellano was aboard for the five furlongs in 57.93 seconds. Everything Lovely held off Sunnysammi by a length and paid $7.80 to win.

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1:10 p.m.

The infield party is in full swing ahead of the 142nd running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico in Baltimore.

Country singer Sam Hunt and electro house music DJ Zedd are co-headlining the pre-race concert under cloudy skies. Also on the bill is Good Charlotte.

The racetrack is listed as muddy after Friday’s rainstorm. After three straight days of 90-degree weather, Saturday’s high is 66 degrees (18 C).

The U.S. Army Golden Knights will parachute, the B-2 Stealth bomber is set for a flyover and the Budweiser Clydesdales will parade later on.

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