The Preakness Stakes: A Race to Remember


The Preakness Stakes is an iconic American horse race that forms part of the coveted Triple Crown. Held annually at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland, this historic event draws thousands of spectators and horse racing enthusiasts from around the world.

History of the Preakness Stakes


The Preakness Stakes was first run in 1873, making it one of the oldest horse races in the United States. Named after the horse Preakness, who won the inaugural Dinner Party Stakes at Pimlico in 1870, the race has a rich heritage and tradition.

The Triple Crown

The Preakness is the second jewel of the Triple Crown, positioned between the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont Stakes. Winning all three races is a rare and prestigious achievement in the horse racing world.

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The Race

The Track

Pimlico Race Course, known for its unique and challenging track, provides an exciting and unpredictable racing experience. The race is run over a distance of 1 3/16 miles on a dirt track.

Notable Winners

Throughout its history, the Preakness Stakes has seen many legendary horses cross the finish line. Notable winners include Secretariat, American Pharoah, and Justify—all of whom went on to secure the Triple Crown.

Traditions and Festivities

The Black-Eyed Susan

The winning horse of the Preakness Stakes is draped with a blanket of black-eyed Susans, Maryland’s state flower. This tradition symbolizes the state’s pride and connection to the race.


InfieldFest is a lively and popular event held on the infield of Pimlico on race day. Featuring live music, entertainment, and food, it attracts a diverse crowd and adds to the festive atmosphere of the Preakness Stakes.

The Woodlawn Vase

The Woodlawn Vase, awarded to the winner of the Preakness Stakes, is one of the most valuable trophies in American sports. The original trophy, crafted in 1860, is kept at the Baltimore Museum of Art, while a replica is presented to the winning horse’s owner.

The Impact of the Preakness Stakes

Economic Boost

The Preakness Stakes provides a significant economic boost to Baltimore and the surrounding region. Hotels, restaurants, and local businesses thrive during Preakness week as visitors flock to the city.

Cultural Significance

Beyond the economic benefits, the Preakness Stakes holds cultural significance as a cherished tradition in Maryland and the broader horse racing community. Its storied past and vibrant present continue to captivate new generations of fans.


The Preakness Stakes is more than just a horse race; it is a celebration of tradition, athleticism, and community. From its historic origins to its modern-day festivities, the Preakness Stakes remains a beloved event that captures the spirit of competition and the joy of sport.

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