Preakness Stakes Best Bets: Expert Picks to Win, Superfectas, Longshots

Preakness Stakes Best Bets: Expert Picks to Win, Superfectas, Longshots article feature image

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images. Pictured: A race at 2023 Preakness Day ahead of the Preakness Stakes as we preview the best bets and expert picks to win, superfectas, longshots and more exotics.

We're coming down to the wire before the 2023 Preakness Stakes, scheduled to begin at 6:50 p.m. ET on NBC — which means you only have minutes left to make the most of our Preakness Stakes best bets and expert picks to win and for superfectas, longshots and other exotics.

Our horse racing betting experts have shared their Preakness Stakes best bets and expert picks on horses to win, superfectas, longshots, and more exotics. Those best bets and expert picks include Kentucky Derby winner Mage, who's looking to win his second leg of the Triple Crown as the only horse running in the Preakness Stakes from the 2023 Kentucky Derby field.

Keep in mind, there's been significant changes in the odds since the morning lines, as we cover in our 2023 Preakness Stakes Updated Odds— but Mage remains the betting favorite at this moment.

Here are our 2023 Preakness best bets: expert picks to win, for superfectas and longshots, and more.

Preakness Stakes Best Bets: Expert Picks to Win, Superfecta, Longshots

Expert Picks to Win 2023 Preakness Stakes

Sean Zerillo: No. 3 Mage (8-5)

First Mission was going to be my pick for the Preakness, before he was scratched. Now, I really think it comes down to the No. 1 and the No. 3.

The pacing here should be pretty slow, and the way Mage won the Kentucky Derby, coming from 16 lengths off the lead — he needed a very fast pace to run into and close it. He'll need to be closer to the pace in this race to win the Preakness Stakes.

It's very possible a horse like National Treasure gets out to a soft lead and is able to run a merry-go-round around the track, and Mage, just by virtue of being too far back at the half-mile call, is not able to catch up to him in the stretch run.

I do think Mage is a justifiable favorite, though, as the only Derby horse coming back against a much weaker field. If he ran the race he ran in the Derby, it's tough to imagine anybody beating him. Mage is my top win contender, but I'm going to have National Treasure in there right behind him.

Mike Conti: No. 1 National Treasure (4-1)

National Treasure is a Bob Baffert horse shipping in from California. If you go watch his race in the Santa Anita Derby, he had to all but stop on the far turn, and then you watch the last 1/16 and you really see him pick his stride back up. He galloped out well.

They put blinkers back on this horse for the Preakness. He will be forwardly placed, if not in the lead, in a 2023 Preakness Stakes that lacks pace.

Look for this horse either to go gate-to-wire or sit just off of No. 4 Coffeewithchris, and I think this is a great value bet at 4-1.

Expert Picks for 2023 Preakness Stakes Superfecta

How does a Superfecta work? Think of it like a parlay. In the first example below, we're essentially betting two different parlay tickets: For Mage (3) to finish first, National Treasure (1) to finish second, and then either Red Route One (5) to finish third and Perform (6) to finish fourth, or Perform to finish third and Red Route One to finish fourth.

Somich: 3 | 1 | 5,6 | 5,6

I loved Mage at 15-1 to win the Kentucky Derby, and while we're not quite getting that price, I think Mage is able to win the Preakness this weekend, as long as we can come even close to replicating that Derby effort.

I agree with Conti; I think National Treasure runs big here. I think he is the fastest early horse, and I think he is able to hold on for a long time — but I think he gets caught by Mage late.

I really like the 3 | 1 cold on top, with Mage over National Treasure. With the superfecta, I think you can insert some value by adding a couple of prices in the third and fourth spots. So, I'll take No. 3 Mage in first, then No. 1 National Treasure in second. Then I'll take No. 5 Red Route One and No. 6 Perform in the third and fourth spots.

Before the scratch, I liked adding No. 8 First Mission in those spots as well, but there still should be value with the 5,6 in both in the slightly smaller field.

Conti: 1 | 3 | 5,6 | 5,6

I'm similar yet different to Somich, with National Treasure up top and Mage in second. In third and fourth, I'm putting Perform and Red Route One, just like Mike.

Before the scratch, I was going to do just Perform and First Mission in the third spot, then Red Route One, Perform and First Mission in the fourth spot. With First Mission's scratch, we'll play both longshots in both positions, with my first two spots just flip-flopping Mike's above.

Expert Picks for 2023 Preakness Stakes Longshots

Conti: No. 6 Perform (15-1)

Yes, it took this horse six races to break his maiden. Then you go back and look at who this horse lost to in the first five starts of his career, including Mage, and it's a really strong list of horses.

Now, Perform has won two in a row, and if you go watch that last race, this horse was navigating some serious traffic in the lane coming for home. At one point, he ducks down to the rail and then has to come back off the rail in the last 100 yards or so.

While I don't think Perform is a win contender, I do think Perform is a great horse to key underneath in your exotic bets for the Preakness.

Zerillo: No. 6 Perform (15-1)

Just based on where I think these horses will be situated early in the race, Perform should be in that second flight with Mage, and I think they're going to get the first run on the leaders before everyone else does in a race where I don't see much pace.

And I think Perform, Mage and National Treasure are going to be the horses closer to the lead who end up hitting the board.

Somich: No. 5 Red Route One (10-1)

The pace is probably against this horse. He's going to be coming from the absolute clouds. But I think this is a great horse to be using underneath in your trifectas and in your superfectas. The horse has a huge kick late, and he loves running second and third, which is exactly what you're looking for from this price here.

So, I think using Red Route One in that second and third spot in your exotics is a great bet. I mentioned I like the 3 | 1 exacta, and I kind of like the 3 | 1 | 5 cold trifecta, as well, if you want to add some value. I even think Perform makes a ton of sense running out into that three- or four-spot in your superfecta.

Expert Picks for 2023 Preakness Exacta

Mike Somich: 3 |1 Cold Exacta

My absolute best bet in the Preakness is playing the 3 | 1 Exacta. I'll put Mage up top, National Treasure in second, hopefully get something in the 8-1 or 10-1 range on that, and try to make some value out of an 8-5 favorite up top.

2023 Preakness Stakes Odds

PostHorseUpdated OddsMorning Line
1National Treasure5-24-1
2Chase the Chaos9-150-1
5Red Route One7-110-1
7Blazing Sevens9-26-1
8First MissionScratchScratch

Updated odds via TwinSpires.

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