Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Not Quite as Dignified

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:
Preakness Stakes Infield Party

When we think of the Kentucky Derby, images of Edwardian style hats and mint juleps will typically come to mind.  The Preakness Stakes at Pimlico:  Men running around in their underwear, garbage strewn across the field and idiots jumping in front of the galloping horses.  And of course there is the usual flashing of the breasts.

The Preakness infield is known for its rowdy antics and, after banning alcohol coolers last year, inebriating beverages are making a triumphant return for the 2010 race, according to the Huffington Post, which featured a number of crazy Preakness Pimlico party pics on its site.

When organizers barred coolers filled with alcohol, a Preakness mainstay, attendance fell from 112,222 to 77,850, the lowest figure in more than 20 years, according to the New York Times.

Tickets have been reduced to $40, and an additional $20 secures unlimited beer refills. From 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., $1 draft beers will be sold.

In 1999, the Preakness revelry came to head when a fan ran onto the track and tried to punch a horse during an early race. Then the advent of YouTube made the spectacle increasingly hard to ignore, the Times reports.

"People are talking about it - there's a definite buzz," he said. "It's helped keep the Preakness and Maryland racing in the public eye."

The Preakness itself nearly shut down.  The company that owns the track went into bankruptcy last year, which prompted the General Assembly to pass emergency legislation authorizing the state to buy or seize the race course by eminent domain if necessary, declaring the Preakness "a sporting event of historical and cultural importance to the State of Maryland."

Attendance at the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico was estimated to be around 2008 numbers based on preliminary ticket sales.

Be sure to place your bets on the Preakness Stakes 2010 at one of Gambling911.com's top online sportsbooks here

Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com



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