Creative Minister: A Dark Horse in the 147th Preakness Stakes
A Sneaky Contender with a Creative Entry
In the world of horse racing, the nomination process for prestigious events like the Preakness Stakes is crucial. However, Creative Minister’s journey to the 147th Preakness Stakes wasn’t a conventional one. A hefty check of $150,000 was required to supplement his entry, a move considered by some as a creative act. While this may not be the traditional route for a contender, Creative Minister is quickly gaining popularity among horseplayers as a dark horse in this highly anticipated race. With a 2-for-3 record heading into his stakes debut, Creative Minister has already proven himself as a formidable competitor.
A Costly Decision: Supplemental Entry for Creative Minister
The decision to supplement Creative Minister into the Preakness Stakes came with a hefty price tag. Due to his late debut, the colt missed the initial deadline for Triple Crown nominations, which would have cost only $600. However, waiting until the late nomination deadline on March 29 would have cost a staggering $6,000. Despite the significant expense, Creative Minister’s connections opted to supplement his entry as they saw immense potential in the horse. At the time of their decision, Creative Minister had only one race on his resumeâ€”a neck loss in a maiden special weight event at Gulfstream Park.
Unbeaten and Unyielding
Since that initial race, Creative Minister has competed twice more, emerging victorious on both occasions. His triumph in an April 9 Keeneland maiden special weight race, where he won by 1 1/2 lengths, caught the attention of many racing enthusiasts. However, it was his performance in an allowance race on the Kentucky Derby undercard that truly impressed both fans and horse experts. Despite a slow start and sitting far off the pace, Creative Minister powered through to secure a resounding three-length victory. Adding to the excitement surrounding Creative Minister is the impressive 108 Equibase Speed Figure he achieved over a 1 1/16 mile distance.
A Chance Encouraged by a Speed Figure
When majority owner Greg Back saw Creative Minister’s remarkable 108 Equibase Speed Figure, he became convinced that the Preakness Stakes was the next logical step for the talented colt. Back approached trainer Kenny McPeek, who also owns 10% of Creative Minister, with the idea of entering the horse in the prestigious race. McPeek, who had previously discussed the horse’s future, contemplated the proposition and eventually agreed, emphasizing the significance of the exceptional speed figure. This figure not only surpassed that of any other Preakness contender but even exceeded the 106 Equibase Speed Figure earned by Rich Strike in his victorious Kentucky Derby run.
Embracing the Underdog Status
Word of Creative Minister’s potential spread like wildfire among horseplayers. He quickly became known as the “wise-guy” horseâ€”a sleeper pick that could shake up the race and potentially yield generous payouts. Originally listed at +1,495 odds on Circa Sports’ Preakness board, Creative Minister’s odds have since dropped to 9/1, confirming his status as a legitimate contender. The enthusiasm surrounding Creative Minister’s chances stems not only from his recent victories but also from his owners’ reputations and backgrounds.
A Collaboration of Successful Owners
Greg Back, who sold his trucking company several years ago, and Paul Fireman, former owner of Reebok, each own 45% of Creative Minister. Both individuals possess a strong track record of success in their respective fields, and their belief in Creative Minister’s potential speaks volumes. To secure his entry into the Preakness, Back and Fireman have each contributed $67,500, while McPeek invested the remaining $15,000. Remarkably, this entry fee is only $30,000 less than what the horse was originally purchased for. With a total purse of $1.65 million, Creative Minister and his competitors will be vying for a substantial reward, making hitting the board a crucial milestone for the investment to pay off.
A Gamble on Success
Greg Back, known for his gambling spirit, acknowledges the risks involved but remains optimistic about Creative Minister’s chances. With a genuine belief in the horse’s abilities, Back sees the Preakness as an opportunity not only to hit the board but potentially claim victory. He recognizes the importance of timing and the endurance of other horses in determining Creative Minister’s success. With a style that relies on a strong finishing kick, Creative Minister’s chances may improve if other contenders tire out during the intense race.
Creative Minister’s unconventional journey to the 147th Preakness Stakes has captured the attention and imagination of horse racing enthusiasts. From the creative decision to supplement his entry to his impressive performances on the track, Creative Minister has emerged as a dark horse with tremendous potential. The support and confidence of his owners, Greg Back and Paul Fireman, coupled with trainer Kenny McPeek’s belief in the horse’s talent, further solidify Creative Minister’s status as a formidable contender. As the Preakness Stakes approaches, all eyes will be on this intriguing and enigmatic horse, eager to witness if he can exceed expectations and make a lasting impression on the racing world.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can you explain the concept of supplementing a horse’s entry into a race?
Supplementing a horse’s entry refers to adding them to a race after the nomination deadline has passed. This process usually involves paying a significant fee to ensure the horse’s eligibility. In Creative Minister’s case, his debut occurred after the initial nomination deadline for the Triple Crown races, necessitating a supplemental payment of $150,000 to secure his entry into the Preakness Stakes.
2. Why is Creative Minister gaining a reputation as a wise-guy horse?
Creative Minister is being touted as a “wise-guy” horse due to his potential to surprise and outperform expectations. Betters and horseplayers are taking notice of his recent victories, impressive speed figures, and the betting odds offered on him. This combination has generated excitement and intrigue, as many perceive him to be an undervalued contender capable of delivering substantial payouts.
3. How do Creative Minister’s owners contribute to his chances in the Preakness Stakes?
Creative Minister’s owners, Greg Back and Paul Fireman, bring both financial investment and extensive business acumen to the table. Their backgrounds of success in their respective industries instill confidence in Creative Minister’s potential. Their collaborative decision to supplement his entry and their dedication to supporting his racing career demonstrate a strong belief in his ability to succeed.
4. What is the significance of the Equibase Speed Figure and Creative Minister’s 108 rating?
Equibase Speed Figures provide a standardized measure of performance for horses in a race. A higher Equibase Speed Figure reflects a faster and more impressive performance. Creative Minister’s 108 rating surpasses that of any other contender in the Preakness and even exceeds the figure earned by Rich Strike in his Kentucky Derby victory. This exceptional speed figure further solidifies Creative Minister’s potential for success in the upcoming race.
5. How does Creative Minister’s running style affect his chances in the Preakness?
Creative Minister is known for his strong finishing kick, which can be advantageous in a race like the Preakness. If other horses tire out or fail to maintain their early pace, Creative Minister’s ability to accelerate in the final stretch could work to his advantage. His running style positions him as a potentially formidable competitor in the race, increasing his chances of hitting the board or even claiming victory.