And… They’re Off: Kentucky Derby Best Bets

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This year’s Kentucky Derby is less about the horses and more about how the track has been playing so
far this meet. With racing taking place starting Tuesday, the dirt track has shown it’s old form of early
speed holding on to win and pressers and stalkers having a chance at winning. No horse has closed
from off the pace by more than five lengths at the top of the stretch into any of the front runners so
far. What running style are the two favorites for the Kentucky Derby you may ask? Unfortunately, they
are closers, who will be running on from the far back of the pack. Can they maneuver around 15-18
other horses in time to claim victory? I think not.

Here Is the Kentucky Derby field, with morning line odds and notes:

  1. Hit Show (30-1)- Kentucky Derby winning owners, favored in every race in their young career and then took second by a nose in the Wood Memorial in New York. The post is brutal for this horse who would like to stalk the pace but may now be buried inside.
  2. Verifying (15-1)- A nice second in the Bluegrass Stakes only be a neck has this horse at fair odds
    with connections who dominate Kentucky racing. They should be closer to the front end so this horse better break well or they are in trouble.
  3. Two Phil’s (12-1)- They exploded with the best prep race out of nowhere winning the Jeff Ruby in impressive fashion, but that race was on synthetic dirt and this one has lost to most of the true
  4. Confidence Game (20-1)- Off since February when they won the Rebel Stakes, this horse has been training quite well over a course they’ve won at twice already.
  5. Tapit Trice (5-1)- Winner of the Bluegrass Stakes, this horse is a true grinder and has a very hot
    jockey recently who should push this one into a good position.
  6. Kingsbarns (12-1)- Undefeated in three starts with the last being the Louisiana Derby, but the
    jockey who won on him is jumping off to ride another horse? Something tells me this horse isn’t that special if that is the case.
  7. Reincarnate (50-1)- A former Bob Baffert trainee, this horse will be going off at 25/1 and will be
    looking to flash some early speed. The last two races for this one weren’t spectacular, but I mean, tactical speed is huge in this race.
  8. Mage (15-1)- Took a very nice second to the Kentucky Derby favorite last out in the Florida Derby but their jockey also bailed out for another horse. This one sure is talented but is a closer who will need some pace to run into.
  9. Skinner (20-1)- Back to Back 3 rd place finishes but is improving in each race and may like the added distance.
  10. Practical Move (10-1)- Winner of the Santa Anita Derby, this horse had to really work for it to
    barely nose out two horses.
  11. Disarm (30-1)- Some seconds and thirds in key preps but this horse doesn’t seem to have the
    goods to get the distance.
  12. Jace’s Road (50-1)- The perfect example of why the Derby points system just doesn’t work. This
    horse doesn’t win but somehow draws in due to mediocre thirds and fourths. This one has no chance.
  13. Sun Thunder (50-1)- If you want to watch a horse struggle in the last three furlongs of every race, this horse is for you.
  14. Angel of Empire (8-1)- This impressive winner of the Arkansas Derby finished that race faster than any other horse in any other prep. Flavien Prat chose to ride this horse over undefeated Kingsbarns.
  15. Forte (3-1)- The favorite and 2-year-old champion after winning all the Florida preps, but does his running style of closing from the clouds work on this speedy Churchill track?
  16. Raise Cain (50-1)- This one could beat a chicken in a race, maybe?
  17. Derma Sotogake (10-1)- No horse has won the derby from Japan. No horse has won from the 17
    hole. No horse has won coming over from the UAE Derby. That is what we call a trifecta of horror in our world. They will be on or near the lead. Or they could take dead last?
  18. Rocket Can (30-1)- This horse has taken third and fourth against much better in this field. I am
    surprised if they are 30/1 come post time, because this horse can’t win.
  19. Lord Miles (30-1)- Surprising winner of the Wood Memorial but also a horse that will be coming
    from off the pace.
  20. Continuar (50-1)- The other Japanese horse who got their invitation by beating no one on their
    island. They’ve lost to Derma Sotogake as well.

Horses who are versatile and have speed are going to be the ones taking home the placings this year.
My main bet will be (17) Derma Sotogake at 10/1 to finish in the Top 3, so I’ll be betting him to Win,
Place, and Show. He has the early speed and could be able to get the distance. Other horses who
could be on or near the lead I am leaning toward are (4) Confidence Game at 20/1 and Angel of Empire at 8/1. Either would be no surprise to me based on their last race.

For more sports betting information and plays, follow David on Twitter: @futureprez2024

Written by David Troy

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