Baffert is 4-0 in the Preakness with the Derby winner and doesn’t see any reason Justify doesn’t have another big run in him.
I like being the favorite, Baffert said Wednesday. “I don’t want to be 50-1. I like knowing that I have a chance to win. When you come in and you’re like, ‘Well, I don’t know, we’re going to need the Stanford marching band to interfere a little bit,’ then you don’t feel that well. I just feel that when you know that there’s a chance you can pull this off and when you can win on the big arena, that’s what it’s all about.”
Justify already won on horse racing’s biggest stage when he held off a hard-charging Good Magic to capture the Derby on a muddy track at Churchill Downs. Rain is expected at Pimlico Race Course in the days leading up to the Preakness and on race day, which could set up a similar scenario to how jockey Mike Smith took Justify out to the lead before the final turn and pulled away.
He’s the best horse, said D. Wayne Lukas, who trains Bravazo and Sporting Chance. “He looks terrific, he’s doing well. I watched him all week. He’s going to be very, very hard to handle.”
So, how does Ross approach the 2018 season?
He eyes a rebound and he won’t be alone, as teammates A.J. Green and Brandon LaFell have told Ross to not overthink everything on the field and just play, according to the Bengals ‘ official website.
That’s one of my biggest things, Ross said. “I’m thinking about everything I’m doing and it’s taking away from how talented I actually am. They’re in my ear a lot saying, ‘Just relax. Be yourself. We can tell when you’re yourself. You perform better. You just have to stop thinking so much.'”
Ross has also gained valuable insight from former Bengals wide receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh, who has worked out with the Ross during the offseason.
He said, ‘You got drafted ninth because you’re talented and you work hard,’ Ross recalled. “‘Just continue to do so. You’ll get better.'”