13-1 shot Cloud Computing springs upset in Preakness

Brown already had won eight Breeders' Cup races, but Cloud Computing was just his sixth starter in any of the Triple Crown races: the Kentucky Derby, Preakness or Belmont.

Cloud Computing (2), ridden by Javier Castellano, second from left, wins142nd Preakness Stakes horse race at Pimlico race course as Classic Empire (5) with Julien Leparoux aboard takes second, Saturday, May 20, 2017, in Baltimore.

Classic Empire stood in second behind Always Dreaming until taking the lead at the top of the stretch. Cloud Computing hadn't run in six weeks. And veteran jockey Javier Castellano celebrated his third Preakness win just a few months before he will be inducted into the National Museum of Racing's Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., on August 4.

Classic Empire returned $4.40 and $4, and 31-1 shot Senior Investment was another 4 3/4 lengths back in third and paid $10.20. "The only thing is, Always Dreaming backed out of the race early, so I got to the lead early, maybe too early".

Always Dreaming was the first to throw in the towel, surrendering the lead to Classic Empire midway around the final turn. By the time they passed Pletcher and much of the crowd of 140,327 the first time, Pletcher thought Always Dreaming seemed to be "dragging" jockey John Velazquez and seemed to be on a "loose rein".

He paced in front of his Kentucky Derby winner's No. 40 stall on Saturday evening, about an hour before the race, chatting on his cell phone as though it was just another day at the office.

"I'm not going to dispute the fact that we brought in a fresh horse - that was part of our strategy", trainer Chad Brown said. "So I think that's actually why we're here today". Only 46,870 attended the year before, when Street Sense and Curlin split the first two races. No one passes the Derby when they can get in the field, but Brown was practical enough to understand that his horse would have been a rank outsider in the Derby field and was an unlikely victor. Our horse is very talented, too, but Classic Empire and Always Dreaming are two outstanding horses. But the Preakness came to tell another story, and that involved Seth Klarman, who owns the colt with William Lawrence.

"It just didn't work out in the Wood. We stuck with the plan", Castellano said. "We're just going to take it race by race with this horse".

He started that "gambling" 25 years ago, and concluded, "This is the culmination of 25 years of hard work and learning and trying to figure this game out", uttering this after a Preakness so few had figured out. "This is gambling. It's really been a thrill and this is the highlight of our career so far as thoroughbred owners". The horses who competed at the Derby had just a two-week layoff.

The pace of the race is going to be dictated by the #10, Conquest Mo Money, and the lightly raced Multiplier, victor of the Illinois Derby, who will break from the rail.

  • Julie Sanders