LEXINGTON, Ky.—Just about everyone has assumed that miracle Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike’s next race will be the Preakness Stakes on May 21. The horse appears to have bounced out of the Derby in good shape, and thus is compelled by tradition, market forces and the allure of a Triple Crown to contest the second leg in Baltimore.
But on this idyllic patch of land off Russell Cave Road where Rich Strike resides, crab cakes are not yet on the menu. At Mercury Equine Center, Eric Reed’s training farm on the outskirts of Lexington, they are tapping the brakes on the Triple Crown. They may well still end up at the Preakness, but nothing is certain yet.