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Derby Champ Animal Kingdom Made Favorite in Preakness

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May 18 (Bloomberg) -- Kentucky Derby champion Animal Kingdom was made the 2-1 favorite in the 136th Preakness Stakes, the second leg of thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown.

Dialed In, Nick Zito’s Derby favorite, is next at 9-2, followed by Mucho Macho Man at 6-1, according to the morning line by Pimlico Race Course handicapper Frank Carulli.

Animal Kingdom will run from the 11th post position, Dialed In starts from the 10th gate and Mucho Macho Man drew the ninth post.

The May 21 race over 1 3/16 miles at Baltimore’s Pimlico racetrack will be contested by 14 horses.

Animal Kingdom, training at Fair Hill Training Center in northwestern Maryland, won’t go to Pimlico until the morning of the race, his trainer, Graham Motion said.

“The advantages are for staying in his stall until he has to leave,” said Motion, who won his first Derby with Animal Kingdom.

One horse has won the Preakness from the 11th post position -- Tabasco Cat in 1994. Animal Kingdom, ridden by John Velazquez, will be running only his second race on a dirt track.

“He is in great form. He came out of the race super,” said Motion, whose previous three Preakness entries never ran better than third. “He hasn’t missed a meal.”

Zito, who won the Preakness in 1996 with Louis Quatorze, said Dialed In “didn’t lose anything in stature” when the colt came in eighth in the Derby.

“Nick Zito still believes Dialed In is the best 3-year-old in the country and if he can come with his best game, he can run down Animal Kingdom,” Zito said.

PP Horse              Jockey             Trainer        Odds
1  Astrology          Mike Smith         Steve Asmussen 15-1
2  Norman Asbjomson   Julian Pimentel    Chris Grove    30-1
3  King Congie        Robby Albarado     Tom Albertrani 20-1
4  Flashpoint         Cornelio Velasquez Wesley Ward    20-1
5  Shackleford        Jesus Castanon     Dale Romans    12-1
6  Sway Away          Garrett Gomez      Jeff Bonde     15-1
7  Midnight Interlude Martin Garcia      Bob Baffert    15-1
8  Dance City         Ramon Dominguez    Todd Pletcher  12-1
9  Mucho Macho Man    Rajiv Maragh       Kathy Ritvo     6-1
10 Dialed In          Julien Leparoux    Nick Zito       9-2
11 Animal Kingdom     John Velazquez     Graham Motion   2-1
12 Isn’t He Perfect   Edgar Prado        D. Shivmangal  30-1
13 Concealed Identity Sheldon Russell    Eddie Gaudet   30-1
14 Mr. Commons        Victor Espinoza    John Shirreffs 20-1

To contact the reporter on this story: Nancy Kercheval in Washington at nkercheval@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net