National Treasure notches close win in Preakness Stakes

May 20, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA;  National Treasure with John R. Velazquez up (1) defeats Blazing Sevens with Irad Ortiz, Jr. up (7) to win the 148th running of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

National Treasure took the lead from the start, then survived a stretch duel with Blazing Sevens to win the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on Saturday. Kentucky Derby winner Mage, the 7-5 favorite, had to settle for third.

The top two finishers bumped several times in the stretch but National Treasure, the second choice in the race at 5-2 odds, proved to have enough stamina to pull off the mild upset.

Trainer Bob Baffert captured his record eight Preakness victory, while jockey John Velazquez won the second leg of the Triple Crown for the first time.

The field was reduced to seven due to the early scratch of morning-line second choice First Mission. He was withdrawn due to a left hind leg injury. The field size was the smallest in the Preakness since a seven-horse field in 1986.

–Field Level Media

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