It's that time of year again! Get those hats out, put those bets in - the second leg of the Triple Crown is right in our backyard. Yes, I am talking about the one and only Preakness Stakes at Pimlico in Baltimore, Maryland. The race begins at 6:20 PM, Saturday May 18th.
Right now the Pimlico website has the main track as "fast" and in good condition. Since this is the fastest track in the trio of those represented in the "Triple Crown" due to the shortness of the track itself, just a little rain could make for a very interesting outcome. Orb, (who also won the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs) is the clear favorite not only to take Preakness Stakes but to take the Triple Crown. However, it is not going to be really fun to bet on him. His odds are currently 1-1 which means you bet a dollar, you get a dollar. I'd say go out on a limb and make things interesting for yourself and then brag to everybody who bet on Orb after you win--but that's just me...and I digress....
Hopefully the track at Pimlico will be nowhere near the condition of the track at Churchill Downs--muddy, soaking wet and slick:
So what is the forecast for the 138th Preakness Stakes?
Well, while although we do have an unsettled pattern of weather for the weekend, it looks like highs throughout the daytime will reach into the lower 70s with cloudy skies and a light SE wind at 5 - 10 mph. A chance of a passing shower or storm is not out of the question through the day but I only give that about a 25% shot.
By the time racetime rolls around at 6:20, temperatures will be right around 70 degrees with overcast skies. A chance of a shower or thunderstorm now at about 20% - 25% shot.
I do get a little concerned that at least one of our models, the GFS is picking up some more widespread rain for Saturday--including for Baltimore. This shows precipitation for 2:00PM EST:
However, I believe at this point the threat of more widespread rain stays well to the south of the D.C. and Baltimore areas through the day on Saturday.