AMERICAN Pharoah duly landed the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico on Saturday to set up a crack at the elusive Triple Crown in the Belmont Stakes on June 6th. There can be little doubt that he is a top-notcher, even though, as in the Kentucky Derby, his overall time might suggest otherwise.

It was the slowest Preakness since 1950, and even an adjustment for the deluge which arrived just before the race does not make it anything better than a half respectable time.