Rich Strike owner Rick Dawson said that his horse will not race in the 2022 Preakness Stakes on May 21, ending the possibility of the first Triple Crown winner since 2018.
“It’s very, very tempting to alter our course and run in the Preakness at Pimlico, which would be a great honor for all our group,” Dawson said, according to the Associated Press. “However, after much discussion and consideration … we are going to stay with our plan of what’s best for Ritchie.”
Rarely in the history of horse racing has the winner of the Kentucky Derby not raced in the Preakness Stakes, but for various reasons, it has happened in the past.
Kentucky Derby winners to miss Preakness Stakes
Back in 1932, the Kentucky Derby was officially placed on the horse racing calendar ahead of the Preakness Stakes. Prior to that, there had been several years where the race at Pimlico Race Course would take place before the race at Churchill Downs.
Since the calendar became more solidified, however, there have only been 11 horses that have not raced in the Preakness Stakes after winning the Kentucky Derby.
|Year||Horse||Reason||Race at Belmont?|
|1951||Count Turf||Not eligible||Yes|
|1982||Gato Del Sol||Rest||Yes|
|1985||Spend A Buck||Rest||No|
*Won the Kentucky Derby due to a horse’s disqualification
The first two that missed the Kentucky Derby did so in a situation that is all but impossible to take place now. Though their wins have stood up in history and were not disqualified, Lawrin (1938) and Count Turf (1951) were not eligible to race in the Preakness Stakes.
According to the Courier Journal, Lawrin was not nominated for the race, and the Kentucky Derby wrote that, similarly, Count Turf was not eligible to compete in the Preakness. The Kentucky Derby wrote that back then, there was a different nominating process for each race as opposed to a single process for each of the three Triple Crown races, and reported that it took three decades before that would change.
Last year, Mandaloun’s trainers opted not to have the horse race in the Preakness Stakes after finishing second to Medina Spirit in the 2021 Kentucky Derby. However, Medina Spirit failed a drug test and was stripped of the win in February and Mandaloun was named the retroactive winner.