American Pharoah wins Preakness in driving rain

BALTIMORE -- American Pharoah won the Preakness by seven lengths in driving rain Saturday, keeping alive his Triple Crown bid.

With victories in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, American Pharoah needs a win in the Belmont Stakes to become the sport's first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978.

American Pharoah will bring a six-race winning streak into Belmont on June 6 in New York.

Trained by Bob Baffert, American Pharoah was a heavy favorite in the Preakness despite starting from the unfavorable No. 1 post.

Breaking fast on a sloppy track as thunder roared in the background, American Pharoah took control early and won easily.

Tale of Verve finished second, a length ahead of Divining Rod. Dortmund was fourth.

The winner paid $3.60, $3.40 and $2.80.

Jockey Victor Espinoza rode American Pharoah. A year ago, Espinoza won the Derby and Preakness aboard California Chrome before losing in the Belmont.