Union Rags Out of 2012 Preakness Stakes
It appears that I’ll Have Another’s path to win the second leg of the Triple Crown just got a little easier. According to confirmed reports, Kentucky Derby odds favorite, Union Rags will not be competing on May 19’s 2012 Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland.
After listing Union Rags as probable for “The Run for the Black-Eyed Susans”, trainer Michael Matz made the official announcement this week during an interview with The Blood-Horse. Claiming that the ultimate goal was to become the firsts to win the Triple Crown since Affirmed (1978), Matz sees no reason to strain the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile runner-up.
“It’s a long year and I just don’t think it’s necessary to bring him back in two weeks if he doesn’t have a chance at the Triple Crown,” he said just 10 days away from the race.
As to whether or not Union Rags will be joining them in the final leg of the Triple Crown, Matz wouldn’t commit. The 2012 Belmont Stakes is scheduled to take place Saturday June 9, 2012, from Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. After being listed as the second betting favorite to win at Churchill Downs, many oddsmakers had actually listed Union Rags as the outright frontrunner to win the 138th Run for the Roses.
From the moment the gates at Churchill Downs opened, the son of Dixie Union simply couldn’t get into a good position. Bumped and squeezed by Dullahan on one side and Take Charge Indy on the other, Union Rags never really had a chance to showcase his talents, falling all the way back to 18th place.
But the Fountain of Youth winner wouldn’t let up, as he made a push after the far turn to finish a respectable seventh place. Although Union Rags came out of the race fine, Matz was emotionally drained and didn’t seen the need to do it again two weeks later.
“It was just a shame,” he added. “It’s one of those things that happens and there’s nothing you can do about it.”
Union Rags currently has a 4-1-1 record in seven starts, which have yielded earnings of $1,198,800 for owner Phyllis M. Wyeth and Chadds Ford Stable.
With Union Rags out, it appears that the 2012 Preakness Stakes will literally be a two-horse race between Bodemeister and 2012 Kentucky Derby winner, I’ll Have Another. Who do you think will have the upper hand in round 2 of this great matchup? Check out a complete list of 2012 Preakness Stakes odds and don’t forget to get your free Preakness Stakes 2012 picks right here!
- Bodemeister: 3/1
- Ill Have Another: 3/1
- Dullahan: 6/1
- Hansen: 8/1
- Creative Cause: 8/1
- Went The Day Well: 8/1
- Liaison: 12/1
- Isnt He Clever: 15/1
- Zetterholm: 15/1
- Paynter: 15/1
- Optimizer: 16/1
- Brimstone Island: 20/1
- Cozzetti: 20/1
- Pretension: 20/1
- Hierro: 20/1
- Teeth of the Dog: 25/1
- Tiger Walk: 25/1
- Guyana Star Dweej: 25/1
- Trinniberg: 25/1