Pimlico | WYPR

Pimlico

AP Photo/Nick Wass

It was probably difficult to see on television Saturday, what with all that fog and mist that enveloped Pimlico, but a few seconds after Justify won the Preakness, another horse crossed the finish line.

This horse, however, is far older than the field of three year-olds in the race, but know this: If Justify has this horse’s stamina, he’ll win the Belmont and thus the Triple Crown going away in less than three weeks.

In a nod to the group, America, this horse has no name, per se, but rather a theme, namely that Pimlico Race Course is in trouble.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Mayor Catherine Pugh offered an update Thursday on her estimated $110 million plan to redevelop the blighted Park Heights neighborhood, which abuts Pimlico Race Course. She made the announcement just days before the Preakness is to be run at the aging track.

Pugh’s plan calls for acquiring and demolishing vacant buildings, putting up new, affordable housing and building a new school. She says its part of the effort to keep the Preakness, the second jewel in racing’s triple crown, in the city.

Karen Hosler

Maryland’s horse industry, once thought to be on life support, has rebounded. And at places like the Yearling show in Timonium, where year-old thoroughbreds strut their stuff before a judge who rates their likely racing success based on physical appearance, there’s an air of almost giddy optimism.

"We needed an influx of money and horses and new owners, and I think we are on our way," said long-time trainer Linda Gaudet.

Karen Hosler

There was no shortage of enthusiasm from the hardy band of mostly local folk of a certain age in the Pimlico clubhouse last Saturday. They spent Kentucky Derby day watching horse races from around the country on video display terminals and eagerly placing their bets.

But they also had to be wondering what will become of this decrepit old track that has been reduced to a 12-day live racing season that includes the Preakness, the second jewel in the Triple Crown.

Joel McCord and Karen Hosler, of the WYPR News team, talk about the $300 million price tag for restoring Pimlico Race Course and preserving The Preakness.

Oh sure, the second day of Pimlico’s 2016 season was rain-soaked and gloomy. It was so bad the small scrum of spectators for the opening race didn’t even bother to leave the comfort of the freshly scrubbed clubhouse, watching the action on relatively new flat screen TVs instead.