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2019 Kentucky Derby betting primer

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The 145th Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve on May 4 at Churchill Downs shapes up as one of the most wide-open, competitive Derbys of this decade. A diverse group of 3-year-olds is slated to fill the 20-horse field for the world’s most popular race, including last year’s champion 2-year-old male in Game Winner, an up-and-coming West Coast-based star in Roadster, and a regally-bred East Coast contender in Tacitus as well as several other highly regarded horses.

The 2019 Kentucky Derby, held at 1 ¼ miles, boasts an increased purse totaling $3 million, with $1.86 million going to the winner. The Derby will be televised nationally on NBC with a post time of approximately 6:50 p.m. ET.  To watch the race, click here.

Follow America’s Best Racing’s Triple Crown page and social media feeds  (TwitterInstagramFacebook) for the latest information on the Derby as well as live videos and feature stories. For more, click here.

Read on for information on all of the contenders, presented in post-position order and with morning-line odds.

1. War of Will (20-1)

Jockey: Tyler Gaffalione

Trainer: Mark Casse

Owner: Gary Barber

Career record: 8 starts – 3 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $501,569

Earnings per start: $62,696

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 107

Kentucky Derby points: 60

Pedigree: War Front – Visions of Clarity, by Sadler’s Wells

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This talented colt will is facing stiff historical odds in his quest for the Derby, as since 1940, no race winner has finished worse than fifth in his final prep race – and that only happened twice, in 1951 and 1957. War of Will enters off of a ninth-place finish in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds, where he took an unusual step a few strides out of the starting gate and ended up behind a pack of horses entering the first turn. That position negated his usual pace-pressing running style, and the colt was never involved thereafter. Trainer Mark Casse said following the race that War of Will checked out fine, and he’s been working very well at Keeneland since then through the week of April 20. Prior to his Louisiana Derby mishap, he had won all three of his starts on dirt by a combined 11 ¼ lengths, including the Lecomte Stakes and Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford at Fair Grounds. Like Omaha Beach, War of Will is a son of top global sire War Front, who has had more success with turf runners but has sired some top-class dirt horses as well. War of Will’s female pedigree tilts toward turf, and he began his career with four starts on that surface, but he has shown greater affinity for dirt and overall he has a good stamina foundation for the Derby. This colt is eligible for a big bounce-back race in the Kentucky Derby, but he will need to achieve that and improve even more to topple the top pack of contenders who enter off of much better finishes in stronger prep races at Oaklawn ParkAqueduct, and Santa Anita Park. Drawing the inside post position means he will have to break well and move swiftly to gain a prominent position as the field passes through the stretch for the first time. This horse does his best running close to the pace and any sort of early misfortune similar to what happened in the Louisiana Derby will ruin his chances at bucking history and winning the Kentucky Derby.

Kentucky Derby history: Gary Barber has co-owned two prior Kentucky Derby starters, and this will be his first appearance since 2011. War of Will is Mark Casse’s sixth Derby horse; his best finish came with fourth-place Classic Empire in 2017. Talented young jockey Tyler Gaffalione returns to the Derby two years after his debut, when he finished 14th aboard fan favorite Patch.


2. Tax (20-1)

Jockey: Junior Alvarado

Trainer: Danny Gargan

Owners: R. A. Hill Stable, Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Hugh Lynch, and Corms Racing Stable

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $326,300

Earnings per start: $65,260

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 105

Kentucky Derby points: 52

Pedigree: Arch – Toll, by Giant’s Causeway

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This gelding carries one of the most appealing backstories to the 2019 Kentucky Derby, having been claimed by trainer Danny Gargan for current co-owner Hugh Lynch after his second start last September at Keeneland. Tax won that 1 1/16-mile race by two lengths and was moved up to stakes company in his very next start, where he’s remained ever since. He finished a good third in the Remsen Stakes to close out his juvenile campaign, and returned on a winning note in the 1 1/8-mile Withers Stakes at Aqueduct in early February, holding on to score by a head after stumbling at the start. Returning in the Wood Memorial Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets at Aqueduct, he battled with Tacitus in midstretch before settling for second, 1 ¼ lengths behind that foe (he was also slightly nudged toward the rail by Tacitus in the final sixteenth, but that occurred after Tacitus had forged ahead and no claim of foul was lodged). Tax will be a longshot in the Kentucky Derby but he is a hard-trying type who figures to bring his ‘A’ game to the sport’s biggest stage. The main concern is that other horses who share his stalking running style – Game Winner and Improbable, to name two – are faster and should be in better position to vie for the lead at the top of the Churchill Downs stretch, especially if Tax gets crowded and pushed back after breaking close to the rail. Tax has a classy pedigree that is a plus for the Kentucky Derby, as he was bred and originally owned by the successful partnership of Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider. 2017 Alabama Stakes winner Elate is one of several accomplished stakes-winning relatives on his dam’s side.

Kentucky Derby history: This will be the Kentucky Derby debut for trainer Danny Gargan and most of Tax’s ownership group, save for Reeves Thoroughbred Racing. Dean and Patti Reeves co-owned 2011 Kentucky Derby third-place finisher Mucho Macho Man, winner of the 2013 Breeders’ Cup Classic. Co-owner Raymond Hill III (R. A. Hill Stable) also is part-owner of Vekoma. Jockey Junior Alvarado returns for his third Kentucky Derby; he finished fourth in 2016 aboard Mohaymen.


3. By My Standards (20-1)

Jockey: Gabriel Saez

Trainer: Bret Calhoun

Owner: Allied Racing Stable

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $653,710

Earnings per start: $130,742

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 96

Kentucky Derby points: 100

Pedigree: Goldencents – A Jealous Woman, by Muqtarib

Color: Bay

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: If this fast-improving colt manages to take another step forward in form on May 4, he could hit the Kentucky Derby tote board at long odds. After two runner-up finishes as a juvenile last year, By My Standards tired late to finish third in his 3-year-old debut at Fair Grounds but then rebounded to break his maiden and then post a 22.50-1 upset in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby, both at the New Orleans track. He enjoyed a clean trip in the latter race under rider Gabriel Saez (who has been aboard for all five of this colt’s starts) and showed good courage in the stretch to overtake Kentucky Derby foe Spinoff and win by three-quarters of a length. Given that Louisiana Derby favorite War of Will had a poor start that compromised his chances, By My Standards’ win in that race is suspect in some circles, but he has been training well since then as one of the first horses to ship to Churchill Downs and has a good, stalking running style for the Derby. His sire, Goldencents, won the 2013 Santa Anita Derby at 1 1/8 miles but did his best racing at a mile, winning two Breeders’ Cup races at that distance. Read Mike Curry’s ABR profile for more in-depth analysis.

Kentucky Derby history: Gabriel Saez makes his third Kentucky Derby start this year; he finished second in 2008 aboard the filly Eight Belles. This will be the first Kentucky Derby appearance for both owner Chester Thomas’ Allied Stables and veteran trainer Bret Calhoun.


4. Gray Magician (50-1)

Jockey: Drayden Van Dyke

Trainer: Peter Miller

Owners: Wachtel Stable, Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, and Gary Barber

Career record: 8 starts – 1 win – 3 seconds – 2 thirds

Career earnings: $584,140

Earnings per start: $73,018

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 98

Kentucky Derby points: 41

Pedigree: Graydar – Burg Berg, by Johannesburg

Color: Gray or roan

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: After racing on the West Coast with a modicum of success through his first six starts, this Peter Miller trainee shipped to Laurel Park in February and finished a nonthreatening second to probable Preakness Stakes starter Alwaysmining in a listed stakes and then made his bid for Kentucky Derby points by taking the transcontinental trip to Dubai for a start in the United Arab Emirates Derby Sponsored by Saeed & Mohammed Al Naboodah Group. Gray Magician responded with a career-best effort in the 1 3/16-mile UAE Derby, gamely engaging Plus Que Parfait in deep stretch before losing by three-quarters of a length. That was his first start beyond a mile, and it will be interesting to see how Gray Magician responds in a race at a similar distance but against a much more formidable field come May 4. He projects to be one of several stalkers in a crowded middle group in the Kentucky Derby, and it’s worth noting that his only career win – a runaway 9 ½-length score last November at Del Mar – came in a race where he faced just five other horses. Based on his overall body of work and his miler’s pedigree, Gray Magician will be one of the longest shots in the 2019 Kentucky Derby field.

Kentucky Derby history: Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners has co-owned three prior Kentucky Derby starters, including 2014 third-place finisher Danza. Gary Barber, the sole owner of War of Will, has co-owned two prior Kentucky Derby starters, and this will be his first appearance since 2011. Barber’s Comma to the Top finished 19th that year, and represents Peter Miller’s lone Derby starter to date. Young jockey Drayden Van Dyke made his Kentucky Derby debut last year, and finished fourth aboard Instilled Regard.


5. Improbable (6-1)

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Owners: WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and Starlight Racing

Career record: 5 starts – 3 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $619,520

Earnings per start: $123,904

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 109

Kentucky Derby points: 65

Pedigree: City Zip – Rare Event, by A.P. Indy

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Press the pace/stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Like stablemate Game Winner, Improbable has seen his reputation dwindle slightly over the past couple of months after spending much of the winter ranked either first and second on most Kentucky Derby contender lists. A physically well-built colt with a fluid racing motion, he was undefeated in three starts as a juvenile, romping in the Street Sense Stakes on the Breeders’ Cup Friday undercard at Churchill Downs and finishing off his 2018 campaign with an easy win in the Los Alamitos Cash Call Futurity. In his first start at 3, he took a clear lead in the first division of the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park but was unable to hold off a late challenge from Long Range Toddy, finishing second by a neck. He returned to Oaklawn for his final prep in the Arkansas Derby, and had leader Omaha Beach in his crosshairs at the top of the stretch only to settle for second once again, this time by a length. Bob Baffert put blinkers on Improbable for the first time in the Arkansas Derby to help keep him focused during the race, but the colt reacted poorly to them when he acted up in the starting gate, according to his trainer. They’ll be removed for the Derby, and Improbable also adds the reigning Eclipse Award-winning jockey in Irad Ortiz, Jr. Since he enters on a two-race losing streak, there’s a chance that Improbable may be somewhat of an overlay in the Kentucky Derby, but this colt’s best effort places him right among the top win contenders. Ortiz Jr. is riding in career-best form and his judicious in-race decision-making skills will be put to the test in the Derby, where Improbable figures to be situated among the first five or six horses through the first mile. Look for Ortiz to urge Improbable for his run earlier in the Derby than in the colt’s prior two races, possibly as the field enters the far turn. Improbable’s pedigree is suitable for the Kentucky Derby’s 1 ¼-mile distance, even if several other contenders appear stronger in this category. He is a close relative to 2007 Kentucky Derby runner-up Hard Spun on his dam’s (mother’s) side.

Kentucky Derby history: Irad Ortiz Jr. will be making his fourth Kentucky Derby start, finishing seventh aboard Hofburg last year. Co-owners WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and Starlight Racing also campaigned last year’s Kentucky Derby winner Justify and third-place finisher Audible with Sol Kumin’s Head of Plains Partners. Jack and Laurie Wolf’s Starlight Racing has also owned or co-owned seven other Derby starters, while WinStar Farm won the 2010 Kentucky Derby with Super Saver as sole owner. WinStar has also finished second and third once each as sole owner and third in partnership. Bob Baffert can tie Ben “Plain Ben” Jones for most wins (six) in the Kentucky Derby this year, and he has three chances to do it. His previous five winners from 29 starters are Silver Charm (1997), Real Quiet (1998), War Emblem (2002), American Pharoah (2015) and Justify (2018). The last two won the Triple Crown. Baffert has also finished second in the Derby three times, and third three times.


6. Vekoma (20-1)

Jockey: Javier Castellano

Trainer: George Weaver

Owners: R. A. Hill Stable and Gatsas Stables

Career record: 4 starts – 3 wins – 0 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $788,850

Earnings per start: $197,213

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 110

Kentucky Derby points: 110

Pedigree: Candy Ride – Mona de Momma, by Speightstown

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This talented son of top sire Candy Ride enters the Kentucky Derby off of a strong 3 ½-length win in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland, his third win in four career starts and his first victory around two turns. He benefited from a clean trip and well-timed ride from Hall of Fame jockey Javier Castellano in the Blue Grass, stalking the pace and taking over on command at the top of the stretch to draw away from the rest of the field. Vekoma has a visually awkward running style where his right front leg kicks higher than normal and grabs at the ground in a choppy motion while his front left moves slightly sideways. Although it appears taxing, that is his normal motion, according to trainer George Weaver. Still, it’s a concern racing in the 1 ¼-mile Kentucky Derby against 19 other horses, and Vekoma’s dam, Mona de Momma, was a graded stakes-winning sprinter (although his extended female family features more stamina, including horses such as 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense). Vekoma shapes up as a middle-tier Kentucky Derby candidate who could very well be among the first flight of horses as the field hits the top of the stretch, but he’ll need to move forward even more off of his Blue Grass effort to reach the Churchill winner’s circle on May 4. Read Mike Curry’s ABR profile for more in-depth analysis.

Kentucky Derby history: Vekoma is George Weaver’s second horse to run in the Kentucky Derby; he finished 17th with Tencendur in 2015. Owners Raymond Hill III (R. A. Hill Stable) and Ted and Mike Gatsas (Gatsas Stable) are making their first Derby appearance. Hill also co-owns Tax. Javier Castellano has competed in 12 prior Derbys, and his best finish came in last year’s edition, when Audible finished third.


7. Maximum Security (10-1)

Jockey: Luis Saez

Trainer: Jason Servis

Owners: Gary and Mary West

Career record: 4 starts – 4 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $649,400

Earnings per start: $162,350

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 109

Kentucky Derby points: 100

Pedigree: New Year’s Day – Lil Indy, by Anasheed

Color: Bay

Running style: Pacesetter

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This colt entered the March 30 Xpressbet Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park as a wild card, having been offered in a maiden claiming race by owners Gary and Mary West in his very first start but then winning that race and two others by a combined 34 ½ lengths. He aced his class test in the Florida Derby with an unchallenged, pacesetting 3 ½-length score, and now he heads to Louisville as the only pure front-running horse in the field – which makes him a wild card yet again. The Florida Derby was Maximum Security’s first two-turn race, and he showed he could carry his speed over a route of ground, although skeptics will point out that the horse expected to challenge for the early lead, Hidden Scroll, was taken back early and never was a factor. Still, it would appear to be in the Wests’ and trainer Jason Servis’ best interests to send Maximum Security to the front early in the Derby as this colt clearly prefers to race on the lead and did not appear to be tiring much, if at all, in the late stages of the Florida Derby. That the Wests also have another contender lined up for the Derby in champion Game Winner, who employs a stalking running style, could set up a “best of both worlds” scenario for them, giving them a solid chance at winning the Derby no matter how the pace scenario turns out. Maximum Security’s young sire, New Year’s Day, won the 2013 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile but has not sired a classic-distance horse yet; his dam’s (mother’s) side of the family includes Flat Out, a two-time winner of the 1 ¼-mile Jockey Club Gold Cup. Read Mike Curry’s ABR profile for more in-depth analysis.

Kentucky Derby history: Jason Servis finished 11th in last year’s Kentucky Derby with Firenze Fire, his first appearance. Maximum Security and Game Winner will be Gary and Mary West’s fourth and fifth Derby starters, and first since 2005. Luis Saez was aboard Maximum Security in the Florida Derby and is one of the best pace jockeys currently riding, a big plus for this colt’s Derby chances. This will be Saez’s seventh mount in the Kentucky Derby.


8. Tacitus (10-1)

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

Trainer: Bill Mott

Owner: Juddmonte Farms

Career record: 4 starts – 3 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $653,000

Earnings per start: $163,250

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 106

Kentucky Derby points: 150

Pedigree: Tapit – Close Hatches, by First Defence

Color: Gray or roan

Running style: Stalker/closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott has reached the sport’s heights with stars such as Cigar, Theatrical, and Royal Delta, but he has yet to win the Kentucky Derby. Tacitus gives Mott perhaps his best chance to do so, coming into the Derby off of two impressive graded stakes wins earlier this year. A Juddmonte Farms homebred, the striking gray or roan colt is a testament to Mott’s renowned patience in training. He finished fourth in his career debut last fall and won his next start before a winter break. Tacitus came back to post visually impressive wins in both the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby and the Wood Memorial Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets. Tacitus overcame early trouble in the Wood, getting bumped and having to check entering the first turn, but recovered to grind out a 1 ¼-length victory over Tax. He is bred to handle the Derby’s 1 ¼-mile distance as a son of leading sire Tapit and out of a dam (mother) in Close Hatches who was champion older dirt female of 2014 and who won seven graded stakes at 1 1/16 miles or longer. Tacitus is a closer, and there’s not a lot of speed lined up in this year’s Derby, but the fact that he’s already shown the ability to handle traffic trouble is a big plus. Read Mike Curry’s ABR profile for more in-depth analysis.

Kentucky Derby history: Mott has sent eight horses to the Kentucky Derby, and his best finish came last year when Hofburg finished seventh. Hofburg was the fourth Derby starter for Khalid Abdullah’s international powerhouse Juddmonte Farms, who has finished second twice with Aptitude in 2000 and eventual Belmont Stakes winner Empire Maker in 2003. Jockey Jose Ortiz has ridden Tacitus in all four of his career starts; the 2017 Eclipse Award winner finished second in last year’s Kentucky Derby with Good Magic, his best showing in four starts.


9. Plus Que Parfait (30-1)

Jockey: Ricardo Santana Jr.

Trainer: Brendan Walsh

Owner: Imperial Racing

Career record: 7 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 2 thirds

Career earnings: $1,590,400

Earnings per start: $227,200

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 96

Kentucky Derby points: 104

Pedigree: Point of Entry – Belvedera, by Awesome Again

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Plus Que Parfait earned his position in the 2019 Derby starting gate via the international route, flying half a world away to Dubai and winning the lucrative United Arab Emirates Derby Sponsored by Saeed & Mohammed Al Naboodah Group in late March. He began his career in Kentucky, however, and arguably his career-best race came not under the lights at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai, but instead last fall under the Twin Spires at Churchill, when he ran a fast-closing second to Signalman in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes. Plus Que Parfait returned at 3 to post disappointing finishes in both the Lecomte Stakes (fifth) and the Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford (13th) at Fair Grounds before shipping to Dubai, where he rallied through the stretch to defeat fellow U.S.-based traveller Gray Magician by three-quarters of a length. The ridgling stayed in Dubai for several days after his breakthrough win before shipping back to the States, and has only had light galloping since his return through April 22, which is not unusual as horses coming back from Dubai usually need a break before returning to serious training. He is a one-dimensional closer whose speed figures are lower than most of the 2019 Kentucky Derby contenders, but he has a jockey in Ricardo Santana Jr. with a lot of experience riding at Churchill Downs and also has a good stamina pedigree for the Derby as a son of 2012 Breeders’ Cup Turf runner-up Point of Entry. Look for Santana to sit well back of the early leaders in the Derby and position his horse to make one run at the top of the stretch with the hopes of weaving through tired horses and capturing a share of the purse.

Kentucky Derby history: This will be Santana’s fifth Derby starter, all coming this decade. The Imperial Racing ownership group is making its first Derby appearance, as is trainer Brendan Walsh, a native of Ireland who has risen through the ranks with several stakes winners over the past couple of years.


10. Cutting Humor (30-1)

Jockey: Corey Lanerie

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Owner: Starlight Racing

Career record: 6 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $516,967

Earnings per start: $86,161

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 103

Kentucky Derby points: 50

Pedigree: First Samurai – Pun, by Pulpit

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Cutting Humor earned his qualifying points for the Kentucky Derby with a win in the Sunland Park Derby, easily his best performance. He’ll need to take another step – more of a leap, actually – to win the Kentucky Derby, as his overall career form is substandard when compared with the Derby’s top contenders. After finishing second and third in his first two races last fall, he easily won a one-mile maiden at Gulfstream Park West in November against suspect competition, and then ran a decent second in his 3-year-old debut to Bourbon War in January at Gulfstream Park. But in his stakes debut, Cutting Humor failed to fire in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park, fading to finish seventh, which earned him a trip to Sunland Park and a final prep start in a race that usually draws second-tier Derby hopefuls. He showed grit in turning back a stretch-long challenge from West Coast-based Anothertwistafate to win the Sunland Park Derby by a neck, and has been training well in Florida through April 20 for two-time Derby-winning conditioner Todd Pletcher since then. Cutting Humor set a track record for 1 1/8 miles in the Sunland Park Derby, but the track was excessively fast that day and his overall speed figures place him in the lower ranks of Derby contenders. This colt has a good female family pedigree for the Derby’s 1 ¼-mile distance, although his sire, First Samurai, has so far has had more success with sprinters and milers.

Kentucky Derby history: Jack and Laurie Wolf’s Starlight Racing has either owned or co-owned nine Derby starters. They co-owned last year’s winner Justify with Head of Plains Partners and the two co-owners of their other 2019 Derby starter Improbable, WinStar Farm and China Horse Club. Todd Pletcher earned his first Kentucky Derby winner when Super Saver took the roses in 2010. He tallied his second Derby in 2017 with Always Dreaming, and has finished second twice and third four times among 52 overall starters prior to this year. Corey Lanerie, a veteran jockey who has won the riding title at Churchill Downs several times this decade, will be making his fifth Kentucky Derby start. He finished second aboard longshot Lookin At Lee in 2017.


11. Haikal (30-1)

Jockey: Rajiv Maragh

Trainer: Kiaran McLaughlin

Owner: Shadwell Stable

Career record: 5 starts – 3 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $373,900

Earnings per start: $74,780

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 104

Kentucky Derby points: 70

Pedigree: Daaher – Sablah, by Distorted Humor

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This Shadwell Stable homebred ran well in the Wood Memorial Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets, finishing third in his first start around two turns. He’ll need to improve substantially, however, to hit the board in the 20-horse Kentucky Derby. Haikal is a closer who has fired in each of his five starts, taking two stakes races in a row around one turn – including the one-mile Gotham Stakes – earlier this year before his third-place Wood finish. All of his races have come at Aqueduct, however, and he’ll have to carry that strong form to a new racing surface for the Derby. His sire, Daaher, was a miler, and Haikal is a half-brother (same sire, different dam) to Grade 1-winning sprinter Takaful, who was first tried in longer-distance races but didn’t have success. Despite his decent showing in the 1 1/8-mile Wood, Haikal profiles as a late-closing sprinter/miler to date in his racing career, which is not a good omen for his Derby fortunes. He does bring connections with prior Derby experience to Louisville, and their strategy could very well have Haikal sitting off the pace in the rear group through the backstretch before jockey Rajiv Maragh weaves his mount through traffic on the far turn and gets him clear for his patented closing rally.

Kentucky Derby history: Maragh has competed in five prior Kentucky Derbys, finishing third in 2011 with Mucho Macho Man. Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum’s Shadwell Stable has sent three horses to the Derby, finishing fourth twice, with both of those trained by Kiaran McLaughlin. Haikal will be trainer McLaughlin’s ninth Derby starter. He nearly pulled off a huge upset with his very first entrant in 2005, but Closing Argument could not withstand fellow longshot Giacomo in the final strides and settled for second.


12. Omaha Beach (4-1) — Scratched 

13. Code of Honor (15-1)

Jockey: John Velazquez

Trainer: Shug McGaughey

Owner: W.S. Farish

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $478,820

Earnings per start: $95,764

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 111

Kentucky Derby points: 74

Pedigree: Noble Mission – Reunited, by Dixie Union

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This colt races for elite connections and was one of the highest-regarded members of his juvenile class last fall, but enters the Kentucky Derby somewhat under the radar based on his inconsistent 3-year-old form. He missed the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile in November due to an elevated temperature but made his first 2019 start in early January, only to disappoint with a well-beaten fourth-place finish in the Mucho Macho Man Stakes at Gulfstream Park. Overlooked in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes, Code of Honor rebounded with a three-quarter-length score that placed him back among the top tier of Kentucky Derby contenders. In his final start, he finished third in the Xpressbet Florida Derby, making up some ground in the stretch but not threatening runaway winner Maximum Security and runner-up Bodexpress, who ran 1-2 for the entire race. Code of Honor is a hard-trying colt with an interesting pedigree (his sire is a full brother [same sire and dam] to former European superstar racehorse Frankel) who nevertheless has credentials on the track that are a cut below this year’s top Derby contenders. He is a closer who will be dependent on a solid early pace and also needs a clean trip as he’s shown a tendency to get into race trouble in his past starts. But if he can replicate the form he showed in the Fountain of Youth he’ll have a chance to upset the Kentucky Derby and add to the sterling résumés of his trainer, owner, and jockey.

Kentucky Derby history: Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez will be making his 21st start in the Kentucky Derby. He’s won the race twice, with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and Always Dreaming in 2017, and also finished second once. Will Farish of prominent Lane’s End Farm in Kentucky has only campaigned three Kentucky Derby starters, two of them in partnership, the last coming in 2002. Shug McGaughey has sent seven prior horses to the Kentucky Derby, and the Hall of Fame trainer renowned for his patient approach broke through with his first Derby winner when Orb captured the roses in 2013, his most recent appearance. McGaughey also finished second and third in 1989, with runner-up Easy Goer coming up short to Sunday Silence in the beginning of a classic rivalry.


14. Win Win Win (15-1)

Jockey: Julian Pimentel

Trainer: Michael Trombetta

Owner: Live Oak Plantation

Career record: 6 starts – 3 wins – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $367,300

Earnings per start: $61,217

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 113

Kentucky Derby points: 50

Pedigree: Hat Trick – Miss Smarty Pants, by Smarty Jones

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: A swift stretch rally to gain second in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes by a nose earned this colt 40 qualifying points for the Kentucky Derby, securing his spot in the starting gate. Had he finished third, Win Win Win would have his fortunes exchanged with those of Signalman, who lost the place photo in the Blue Grass and currently stands as the second also-eligible for the Derby. Win Win Win first turned heads at Laurel Park, where he won his two initial starts, both coming at 5 ½ furlongs, by a combined seven lengths. He then finished second to probable Preakness Stakes starter Alwaysmining in a listed stakes at Laurel before shipping to Tampa Bay Downs and romping by 7 ¼ lengths in the seven-furlong Pasco Stakes. That gave his connections confidence to test their charge at longer distances. Although he’s not disappointed them with a third-place showing in the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby and then his late-closing second in the Blue Grass, he didn’t threaten the winner in either race. Win Win Win shapes up as a horse that could very well be the prohibitive favorite in the Pat Day Mile Presented by LG & E and KU on the Kentucky Derby undercard but one that appears to be a cut below the top contenders in the 1 ¼-mile run for the roses. Julien Pimentel, who rode Win Win Win in his first four starts, regains the mount after Irad Ortiz Jr. was named to ride Improbable.

Kentucky Derby history: This will be Pimentel’s first Derby appearance. Charlotte Weber’s Live Oak Plantation has campaigned three prior Derby horses, and finished second in 1982 with Laser Light. Win Win Win is Michael Trombetta’s second Derby starter; he finished seventh in 2006 with Sweetnorthernsaint, the post-time favorite.


15. Master Fencer (50-1)

Jockey: Julien Leparoux

Trainer: Koichi Tsunoda

Owner: Katsumi Yoshizawa

Career record: 6 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $234,392

Earnings per start: $39,065

Top Equibase Speed Figure: N/A

Kentucky Derby points: Automatic qualifier

Pedigree: Just a Way – Sexy Zamurai, by Deputy Minister

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This colt earned a spot in the Kentucky Derby starting gate via Churchill Downs’ Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby race series, finishing fourth and then second in the final two preps in that schedule and then accepting the bid when connections of the top three points earners decided to remain home. He’ll be a mystery horse to U.S. handicappers and fans but is sure to draw interest from supporters in Japan, which has a fervent fan base for horse racing. After finishing second and fourth in his first two career starts on turf, Master Fencer switched to dirt and won twice at distances of about 1 1/8 miles before his two abovementioned stakes starts. He rallied to a runner-up finish in the about 1 1/8-mile Fukuryu Stakes at Nakayama Racecourse in late March, his most recent start, and overall this foreign invader profiles as a closer who could be trailing the Kentucky Derby field through the backstretch before picking off a few tired horses in the late going. Anything more than that would be a major surprise. Master Fencer is from the first crop of young Japanese sire Just a Way, who was a Japanese champion racehorse who won a top-level stakes there at 1 ¼ miles and also scored a major stakes win in Dubai, both of those coming on turf.

Kentucky Derby history: This will be the first Derby start for Master Fencer’s owner and trainer. Jockey Julien Leparoux, on the other hand, is a Kentucky Derby veteran and a regular rider at Churchill Downs, which is a plus for this colt’s connections. Leparoux has had 10 prior Derby mounts, and finished fourth in his most recent appearance aboard Classic Empire in 2017, his best showing.


16. Game Winner (5-1)

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Owners: Gary and Mary West

Career record: 6 starts – 4 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $1,846,000

Earnings per start: $307,667

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 111

Kentucky Derby points: 85

Pedigree: Candy Ride – Indyan Giving, by A.P. Indy

Color: Bay

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: With the recent emergence of Omaha Beach and Roadster, the luster surrounding 2018’s champion 2-year-old  male has dimmed slightly entering the Kentucky Derby, but it would be foolish to dismiss his chances. Game Winner returned to the track after an undefeated 2-year-old season to post runner-up finishes to Omaha Beach (by a nose in the second division of the Rebel Stakes) and to Roadster (by a half-length in the Santa Anita Derby), and his connections felt there were legitimate excuses for each start. The Rebel Stakes near-miss came after a 3 ½-month break, while both trainer Bob Baffert and jockey Joel Rosario felt that Game Winner moved a bit too soon for the lead in early stretch of the Santa Anita Derby – “When he gets by himself … he needs company,” Baffert said afterward. The five-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer is a master at bringing his horses along patiently and having them peak at the right time, and Game Winner already has racing experience on Churchill Downs’ main track as he won the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile there last fall. In addition, Game Winner’s classy pedigree contains a good dose of stamina to help him get the Derby’s 1 ¼-mile distance, and Rosario, one of the best finishing jockeys around, retains the mount for Baffert and owners Gary and Mary West, who also campaign the probable Derby pacesetter in Maximum Security. Look for Rosario to keep Game Winner as clear as possible somewhere in the first third of the crowded Derby field before making his move in the far turn.

Kentucky Derby history: Rosario won the 2013 Kentucky Derby with deep-closing Orb, and will be making his ninth Derby start this year. Maximum Security and Game Winner will be Gary and Mary West’s fourth and fifth Derby starters, and first since 2005. Bob Baffert can tie Ben “Plain Ben” Jones for most wins (six) in the Kentucky Derby this year, and he has three chances to do it. His previous five winners from 29 starters are Silver Charm (1997), Real Quiet (1998), War Emblem (2002), American Pharoah (2015) and Justify (2018). The last two won the Triple Crown. Baffert has also finished second in the Derby three times, and third three times.


17. Roadster (6-1)

Jockey: Florent Geroux

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Owner: Speedway Stable

Career record: 4 starts – 3 wins – 0 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $706,200

Earnings per start: $176,550

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 106

Kentucky Derby points: 100

Pedigree: Quality Road – Ghost Dancing, by Silver Ghost

Color: Gray or roan

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Along with Omaha Beach, this colt from the stacked stable of two-time Triple Crown-winning trainer Bob Baffert carries the most buzz into the Kentucky Derby, based on his impressive return to racing as a 3-year-old after a six-month break due to throat surgery. After taking a one-mile allowance race at Santa Anita Park in early March, Roadster rallied strongly from fifth of six in the Santa Anita Derby to edge Baffert-trained champion Game Winner by a half-length, securing 100 qualifying Derby points and joining Game Winner and Improbable to give Baffert a formidable trio for the 145th run for the roses. Roadster was highly regarded from the outset last summer, winning his debut by 4 ¼ lengths at Del Mar and then running third behind Game Winner in the Del Mar Futurity before the long layoff. Jockey Mike Smith has been aboard Roadster for all of his races but chose to ride Omaha Beach in the Derby. That opponent has more tactical speed than Roadster – a running style that has been more conducive to winning the Kentucky Derby this decade. Still, Roadster clearly is one of the most talented horses in this year’s Derby, with a good stamina pedigree to boot, and he has shown the ability to sit closer to the lead in his races prior to the Santa Anita Derby. He also picks up a rising star jockey in Florent Geroux, who is very familiar with Churchill Downs and is coming off of a red-hot spring meet at Keeneland. Geroux is a patient rider and will seek to work out a good trip from midpack before angling Roadster out through the far turn in hopes of setting up an explosive late kick through the stretch. Read Mike Curry’s ABR profile for more in-depth analysis. Roadster is the highest-priced horse sold at auction in this year’s Derby field, purchased for $525,000 by owner Speedway Stable from breeder Arthur Hancock’s Stone Farm consignment at the 2017 Keeneland September yearling sale.

Kentucky Derby history: Florent Geroux will be making his fourth start in the Kentucky Derby; he finished third in 2016 with Gun Runner, who went on to be named Horse of the Year in 2017. This is the first Derby appearance for Speedway Stable (Peter and Ann Fluor and K.C. Weiner). Bob Baffert can tie Ben “Plain Ben” Jones for most wins (six) in the Kentucky Derby this year, and he has three chances to do it. His previous five winners from 29 starters are Silver Charm (1997), Real Quiet (1998), War Emblem (2002), American Pharoah (2015) and Justify(2018). The last two won the Triple Crown. Baffert has also finished second in the Derby three times, and third three times.


18. Long Range Toddy (30-1)

Jockey: Jon Court

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Owner: Willis Horton

Career record: 8 starts – 4 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $854,459

Earnings per start: $106,807

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 109

Kentucky Derby points: 53.5

Pedigree: Take Charge Indy – Pleasant Song, by Unbridled’s Song

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This Oaklawn Park-based contender enters the Kentucky Derby off of his first poor showing through eight career starts, a sixth-place finish in the Arkansas Derby where he was defeated by 14 ¾ lengths. That race was run on a sloppy track after a deluge of rainfall pelted Oaklawn for several hours, and it’s very possible that Long Range Toddy simply did not handle the racing surface. Prior to the Arkansas Derby, he had finished either first, second, or third in every start other than his debut, culminating with an impressive neck win over Improbable in the first division of the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn. If he can rebound from the Arkansas Derby and put forth an effort similar to his Rebel win, Long Range Toddy has shown the consistency and has a good enough pedigree to merit consideration as a trifecta or superfecta filler in the Kentucky Derby. He prefers to race at a target and has a veteran jockey in Jon Court who should work out a good trip from a midpack position and move him into contention at the top of the stretch. In his other two starts of 2019 aside from the Arkansas Derby and Rebel, however, his closing rally wasn’t enough to get him to the winner’s circle (finishing second and third in two Oaklawn stakes), so he’ll need to take a great leap forward in form on May 4 to post the upset.

Kentucky Derby history: Jon Court is making his fourth career Derby start this year, and first since 2013, when he finished eighth aboard Willis Horton-owned Will Take Charge, the eventual champion 3-year-old male for that year. Horton also co-owned 18th-place Combatantlast year. Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen has sent 19 prior horses to the Kentucky Derby, finishing second with Nehro in 2011 and Lookin At Lee in 2017 and third with Curlin in 2007 and Gun Runner in 2016. Both of those third-place Derby finishers would eventually be honored as Horse of the Year (Curlin in 2007 and 2008, Gun Runner in 2017).


19. Spinoff (30-1)

Jockey: Manny Franco

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Owners: Wertheimer & Frere

Career record: 4 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $260,000

Earnings per start: $65,000

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 101

Kentucky Derby points: 40

Pedigree: Hard Spun – Zaftig, by Gone West

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Spinoff returned after a long break in February and kicked off his 3-year-old campaign with an 11 ¾-length runaway win in a Tampa Bay Downs allowance race that reminded onlookers of the talent he flashed in his two juvenile starts during summer 2018. He had won on debut at Gulfstream Park and then finished third in the Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga before being sidelined, and his Tampa win generated plenty of excitement as the Todd Pletcher trainee prepared for his sophomore stakes debut in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby. Spinoff took the lead in upper stretch after pressing the early pace, but could not hold off an inside challenge from By My Standards and lost by three-quarters of a length. He did finish five lengths clear of the third-place finisher in the Louisiana Derby and has been training steadily since then for Pletcher at Palm Beach Downs in Florida through April 20. Spinoff shapes up as an intriguing longshot candidate to hit the board in the Kentucky Derby. He’s a lightly raced colt with a very good stamina pedigree that may be developing late, and he gained valuable experience in his first two-turn graded stakes start – a recipe that Todd Pletcher has used before to Derby success with horses such as 2017 Derby winner Always Dreaming and 2014 third-place finisher Danza.

Kentucky Derby history: Pletcher earned his first Kentucky Derby win when Super Saver took the roses in 2010. He tallied his second Derby in 2017 with the aforementioned Always Dreaming, and has finished second twice and third four times among 52 overall starters prior to this year. Alain and Gerard Wertheimer, owners of such star racehorses as Goldikova and Halfbridled, have never started a horse in the Kentucky Derby before. This will also be the debut Derby for jockey Manny Franco.


20. Country House (30-1)

Jockey: Flavien Prat

Trainer: Bill Mott

Owners: Mrs. J. V. Shields Jr., E. J. M. McFadden, and LNJ Foxwoods

Career record: 6 starts – 1 win – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $260,175

Earnings per start: $43,363

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 99

Kentucky Derby points: 50

Pedigree: Lookin At Lucky – Quake Lake, by War Chant

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: As opposed to Tacitus, the other Bill Mott trainee in the Kentucky Derby, Country House shapes up as one of the probable longshots in the 20-horse field. He earned his spot in the starting gate by picking up qualifying points in three consecutive preps – a runner-up finish in the Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford, a fourth-place effort in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby, and a third-place showing in the Arkansas Derby. His best performance came three starts back in the Risen Star, where he managed second to War of Will but raced greenly in deep stretch. Country House impressed Derby trail onlookers with a rallying win in a January allowance race at Gulfstream Park, but his three stakes appearances since then have shown this son of 2010 Preakness Stakes winner Lookin At Lucky to be more of a methodical, grinding-type racehorse that may have the stamina to stay the Kentucky Derby’s distance but lacks the speed and professional makeup to compete against the best of his class. He won’t be compromised by the far outside post given his come-from-behind running style, however.

Kentucky Derby history: This will be the first Kentucky Derby appearance for Country House’s ownership group. Hall of Famer Mott has sent eight horses to the Kentucky Derby, and his best finish came last year when Hofburg finished seventh. This will be Flavien Prat’s third mount in the Kentucky Derby. He finished third on Battle of Midway in 2017.


21. Bodexpress (also-eligible, 30-1)

Jockey: Chris Landeros

Trainer: Gustavo Delgado

Owners: Top Racing, Global Thoroughbred, and GDS Racing Stable

Career record: 5 starts – 0 wins – 3 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $208,700

Earnings per start: $41,740

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 103

Kentucky Derby points: 40

Pedigree: Bodemeister – Pied a Terre, by City Zip

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace/stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Still a maiden, Bodexpress will need one defection Kentucky Derby qualifiers prior to May 3 to secure a spot in the starting gate. If he does gain access, he’ll be one of the longest shots in the field and would have to unleash an otherworldly performance to win. He earned his 40 qualifying points for the Derby with a runner-up effort in the Xpressbet Florida Derby at 71.50-1 odds behind unchallenged pacesetter Maximum Security in a race where the top two horses ran in that order from start to finish. (Spinoff also has 40 total Derby points but has accrued more earnings in nonrestricted stakes races.) Once again, Maximum Security projects as the early, and perhaps lone, speed in the Kentucky Derby, but this race is certain to be much more hectic and difficult for a relatively inexperienced colt such as Bodexpress than the Florida Derby was. On the positive side, his sire, Bodemeister, finished a very good second in the 2012 Kentucky Derby and has already sired a Derby winner in 2017 hero Always Dreaming.

Kentucky Derby history: If Bodexpress draws in, it would be the first Derby appearance for his ownership group. Florida-based trainer Gustavo Delgado finished 18th with Majesto in 2016. Chris Landeros, a regular rider on the Kentucky circuit, would also be making his first Derby start.

2019 Preakness Stakes betting primer

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After one of the most controversial Kentucky Derbys in history, Saturday’s Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore shapes up as an opportunity to gain clarity in what is currently a very jumbled 3-year-old division.

Neither Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve winner Country House nor first-place finisher Maximum Security (disqualified and placed 17th) will contest the $1.5-million, 1 3/16-mile Preakness, but four other horses from the Derby will be present, along with a few horses that missed qualifying for the Derby and a local contender in Alwaysmining who enters the race on a six-race winning streak.

Read more on the Preakness Stakes at America’s Best Racing

The 144th Preakness Stakes anchors a stakes-rich racecard on Saturday and will culminate seven total hours of coverage at Pimlico from NBC Sports spanning Saturday as well as Friday, May 17, which features the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

NBCSN will air the Black-Eyed Susan on May 17 from 3-5 p.m. ET. Saturday’s Preakness Stakes coverage begins at 2 p.m. on NBCSN and switches to NBC at 5 p.m. The Preakness post time is set for 6:50 p.m. See the full broadcast schedule here.

Read on for information about all 13 of the Preakness Stakes starters.

1. War of Will (4-1)

Jockey: Tyler Gaffalione

Trainer: Mark Casse

Owner: Gary Barber

Career record: 9 starts – 3 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $501,569

Earnings per start: $55,730

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 107

Pedigree: War Front – Visions of Clarity, by Sadler’s Wells

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Despite the absence of both the Kentucky Derby winner (Country House) and first-place finisher (Maximum Security) in Saturday’s Preakness, the race still carries a high degree of expectation and excitement. That’s partially due to its historical prestige and to its handicapping allure, of course, but also because of War of Will’s presence in the race. Racing fans will be tuning in by the droves to see if this hard-luck colt can rebound from enduring the worst of the controversial multi-horse incident that resulted in Maximum Security’s disqualification in the Kentucky Derby. War of Will had raced just behind pacesetter Maximum Security through the first six furlongs of the Derby, saving ground in fourth place, and then had to check hard after rushing to claim a spot that opened up alongside Maximum Security through the far turn when that foe drifted out several paths. War of Will recovered to remain in contention into early stretch, but then tired to cross the finish line eighth in the Derby (moved up to seventh). The Kentucky Derby followed a toss-out performance in the Twinspires Louisiana Derby, where he lost his stride early behind a pack of horses and never recovered. Prior to that, the son of War Front had won three straight route races, two of them in Derby prep stakes races at Fair Grounds. He appeared to have recovered that earlier form in the Kentucky Derby before all hell broke loose. If that is indeed the case, he’ll be a formidable win contender in the Preakness, at a slightly shorter distance which should suit him. Look for War of Will to fashion a similar pace-pressing trip to the one he ran in the Kentucky Derby, with hopes of better racing luck this time.

Preakness history: This will be rising star jockey Tyler Gaffalione’s first Preakness appearance. Mark Casse has had four prior horses in the Preakness, and nearly won the 2017 edition with Classic Empire, who lost to Cloud Computing by a head.


2. Bourbon War (12-1)

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

Trainer: Mark Hennig

Owners: Bourbon Lane Stable and Lake Star Stable

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $202,100

Earnings per start: $40,420

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 110

Pedigree: Tapit – My Conquestadory, by Artie Schiller

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This well-bred Tapit colt did not earn enough points to qualify for the Kentucky Derby but has shown throughout his young career that he belongs in races with the best of his age group, and he looms as a worthy upset candidate in the Preakness. After winning one of two races last year at age two, he won his first 2019 start impressively at Gulfstream Park and in his next start finished a fast-closing second to eventual Kentucky Derby runner-up Code of Honor in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes at Gulfstream. Bourbon War then finished fourth the Xpressbet Florida Derby behind Kentucky Derby first-place finisher Maximum Security, where a soft early pace compromised his come-from-behind running style. He should get swifter fractions to close into in the Preakness, although it must be said that most of the recent editions of this race have favored horses who are forwardly placed. Regular rider Irad Ortiz Jr., the reigning Eclipse Award-winning jockey, keeps the mount, and trainer Mark Hennig said after the colt’s May 9 workout at Pimlico that he expected Bourbon War to race a little closer to the pace than in in his prior races and that his charge would wear blinkers in the Preakness.

Preakness history: Irad Ortiz Jr. finished fifth aboard Lone Sailor last year in his debut Preakness start. Trainer Mark Hennig is starting a horse in the Preakness for the third time, and the first time since 2004. He finished third with Eddington that year.


3. Warrior’s Charge (12-1)

Jockey: Javier Castellano

Trainer: Brad Cox

Owners: Ten Strike Racing and Madaket Stables

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 0 seconds – 3 thirds

Career earnings: $138,110

Earnings per start: $27,622

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 108

Pedigree: Munnings – Battling Brook, by Broken Vow

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Pacesetter

Notable achievements and interesting facts: The connections of Warrior’s Charge paid a $150,000 supplemental fee to enter their horse in the Preakness, where he will join stablemate Owendale from Brad Cox’s barn. He finished third in his first three races dating back to last November but broke through at Oaklawn Park in a 1 1/16-mile race on March 16, leading from gate to wire in a six-length win. The Munnings colt then backed that performance up with another front-running win at the same distance and track on April 13, scoring by 6 ½ lengths and boosting his Equibase Speed Figure from 103 to a career-best 108. He has been training well at Churchill Downs since those back-to-back scores and if he can continue the upward trajectory, Warrior’s Charge will add intrigue to the Preakness as the main pace threat to Alwaysmining. His sire, Munnings, was a sprinter and his dam’s (mother’s) side of the family through three generations consists of primarily sprinters and milers, but this colt has already shown the ability to carry his speed a route of ground. He faces a class hike in Saturday’s Preakness, but picking up the services of a Hall of Fame jockey in Javier Castellano is a major plus.

Preakness history: Castellano, a four-time Eclipse Award-winning rider, has won the Preakness twice from seven starters: Bernardini (2006) and Cloud Computing (2017). Cox, one of the rising young trainers in the game, will be making his first Preakness appearance.


4. Improbable (5-2)

Jockey: Mike Smith

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Owners: WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and Starlight Racing

Career record: 6 starts – 3 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $769,520

Earnings per start: $128,253

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 109

Pedigree: City Zip – Rare Event, by A.P. Indy

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Press the pace/stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This colt should vie for favoritism in the Preakness along with War of Will and Alwaysmining based on his back class, although he is still winless as a 3-year-old. Improbable took late money in the Kentucky Derby to leave the starting gate as the post-time favorite at 4-1 odds, and he crossed the finish line fifth in an even performance where he sat between two and five lengths behind pacesetter Maximum Security during the race but never made any forceful rally to challenge for the lead. He was moved up to fourth after Maximum Security’s disqualification, but that still represents his worst career finish, and follows two runner-up efforts in the first division of the Rebel Stakes and the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park, where he could not match strides in the stretch with Long Range Toddy and Omaha Beach, respectively. There’s no doubting this colt’s talent, however, and he’s easily the most consistent starter in the Preakness based on speed figures, having posted five triple-digit figures in a row dating back to last fall. The cutback in distance to 1 3/16 miles in the Preakness should benefit Improbable, and getting Hall of Famer Mike Smith to ride for the first time is another plus. Look for Smith to keep Improbable very close to projected pacesetters Alwaysmining and Warrior’s Charge through the backstretch. Smith’s renowned decision-making skills will be put to the test in determining just when to push the button on Improbable and make a bid for the lead, as the colt has had trouble finishing off his races this year after a stellar juvenile campaign.

Preakness history: Smith will be riding in his 17th Preakness and will be seeking his second consecutive win and third overall after taking last year’s race aboard eventual Triple Crown winner Justify. He also won the 1993 Preakness on Prairie Bayou, and has finished second in the race twice and third four times. Hall of Famer Bob Baffert is tied with R. W. Walden with seven all-time Preakness wins. His came with Silver Charm (1997), Real Quiet (1998), Point Given (2001), War Emblem (2002), Lookin At Lucky (2010), and Triple Crown winners American Pharoah (2015) and Justify (2017). WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and Starlight Racing also co-owned Justify along with Head of Plains Partners.


5. Owendale (10-1)

Jockey: Florent Geroux

Trainer: Brad Cox

Owner: Rupp Racing

Career record: 8 starts – 3 wins – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $187,225

Earnings per start: $23,403

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 106

Pedigree: Into Mischief – Aspen Light, by Bernardini

Color: Bay

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: The first of two Brad Cox trainees in the Preakness along with Warrior’s Charge, Owendale arrives in Baltimore on the heels of a breakthrough performance in the Stonestreet Lexington Stakes at Keeneland in April, where he rallied coming out of the far turn and drew away from a good field at 12.70-1 odds, besting Preakness foe Anothertwistafate by 1 ¾ lengths. That eye-opening win erased a dismal eighth-place finish in the Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes Presented by Lamarque Ford in February and makes this son of Into Mischief one of the more intriguing Preakness contenders. He has posted two routine works at Churchill Downs, followed by a bullet five-furlong workout in :59.20 on May 11, since the Lexington Stakes and should be in top shape to prove that his career-best effort at Keeneland wasn’t a fluke. Florent Geroux, who rode Owendale for the first time in the Lexington, retains the mount, and he should have the colt positioned somewhere behind the front tier but ahead of the deep closers going into the far turn at Pimlico.

Preakness history: This will be the third straight Preakness for Geroux, Brad Cox’s first-call rider. Cox, one of the rising young trainers in the game, will be making his first Preakness appearance with this colt and Warrior’s Charge.


6. Market King (30-1)

Jockey: Jon Court

Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas

Owners: Robert Baker and William Mack

Career record: 8 starts – 1 win – 1 second – 2 thirds

Career earnings: $148,007

Earnings per start: $18,501

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 97

Pedigree: Into Mischief – Divine Presence, by A.P. Indy

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace/stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: A major turnaround will be required for this colt to contend in the Preakness Stakes. After outrunning his 48.30-1 odds to finish third in the second division of the Rebel Stakes in March at Oaklawn Park, Market King finished 11th of 14 in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, contending for six furlongs but fading in the stretch to end up 37 ¼ lengths behind winner Vekoma. He had shown improvement earlier in his 3-year-old season at Oaklawn, winning his maiden in February (in his fifth attempt) and then running a good third in an allowance race before checking in third again in the Rebel behind Omaha Beach and Game Winner, defeated by 8 ¼ lengths. This son of Into Mischief has been training well at Churchill Downs over the past several weeks and should be a pace factor if he can recover his early 2019 form, but he hasn’t shown the talent level to compete with the best of his class so far in his career and will be a deserved longshot in the Preakness. Market King sold for the highest price at auction among all Preakness contenders, purchased by his owners for $550,000 as a yearling at the Keeneland September sale in 2017.

Preakness history: Robert Baker and William Mack sent Dublin to the Preakness in 2010 and Sporting Chance last year; the horses finished fifth and sixth, respectively. Both were trained by Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, who has won the Preakness six times from 43 starters heading into this year, most recently with Oxbow in 2013. His other winners: Codex (1980), Tank’s Prospect (1985), Tabasco Cat (1994), Thunder Gulch (1995), and Charismatic (1999). Lukas-trained Bravazo, his other entry in last year’s Preakness, came closer than any other horse to toppling Justify in the Triple Crown races, finishing a half-length behind the champion.


7. Alwaysmining (8-1)

Jockey: Daniel Centeno

Trainer: Kelly Rubley

Owner: Runnymede Racing

Career record: 12 starts – 7 wins – 0 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $386,192

Earnings per start: $32,183

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 109

Pedigree: Stay Thirsty – What Will Be, by Anees

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Pacesetter

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This talented, fast gelding enters the Preakness as the local hero who’s primed to push aside some of the more well-known contenders and snatch the Woodlawn Vase and a share of the national spotlight. After making his first three career starts in Kentucky, Maryland-bred Alwaysmining returned to his home base of Laurel Park and promptly won a 5 ½-furlong sprint last June, but he really didn’t get into gear until the fall, when he returned to the dirt after an unsuccessful turf start and won a one-mile allowance by 10 lengths. Since then, he’s taken five consecutive stakes races at Laurel by a combined 26 ½ lengths, most of them in gate-to-wire fashion. His last two races have been the best of his career, as he won the about 1 1/16-mile Private Terms Stakes by 6 ¾ lengths and then romped in the 1 1/8-mile Federico Tesio Stakes, the local Preakness prep, by 11 ½ lengths. In the Federico Tesio, regular jockey Daniel Centeno actually kept Alwaysmining just off of the early leaders instead of moving up as usual to set the pace, which adds another dimension to this gelding’s arsenal for the Preakness. He’s never won away from Laurel Park and will be making a class leap on Saturday, but he’s already defeated Win Win Win by 1 ½ lengths (in a seven-furlong Laurel stakes last December) and his Equibase Speed Figures place him among the top rank of Preakness contenders. The presence of horses such as Warrior’s Charge, Anothertwistafate, and Improbable should ensure that Alwaysmining has company on the front end, but this razor-sharp runner is the one they’ll have to catch in the Preakness, and a logical win candidate. No Maryland-bred has won the Preakness since Deputed Testamony in 1983.

Preakness history: This will be the first Preakness appearance for all of Alwaysmining’s connections.


8. Signalman (30-1)

Jockey: Brian Hernandez Jr.

Trainer: Ken McPeek

Owners: Tommie Lewis, Steve Crabtree, Dean Demaree, David Bernsen, Jim Chambers, and Magdalena Racing

Career record: 7 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 2 thirds

Career earnings: $552,900

Earnings per start: $78,999

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 100

Pedigree: General Quarters – Trip South, by Trippi

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Signalman just missed the qualifying points cutoff for the Kentucky Derby after Win Win Win rallied late to nip him by a nose for the runner-up spot in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, and now this hard-trying lunch-pail type runner with a modest pedigree heads to Baltimore after posting some solid workouts at Churchill Downs in recent weeks for trainer Ken McPeek. He already has a graded stakes win in a two-turn race on his résumé, that coming last fall in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes, and aside from his seventh-place finish in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes two starts back (his 3-year-old debut), he’s always answered the bell even if his ceiling appears to be lower than several other Preakness contenders. Signalman’s a grinding closer and will need a solid early pace to set up his run along with some racing luck, but he’s a worthy candidate for trifecta and superfecta tickets and could sneak into the Preakness exacta if everything falls into place.

Preakness history: Brian Hernandez Jr. has ridden Signalman for his most recent five starts – all in stakes – and will be making his second Preakness start after finishing sixth in 2013. Ken McPeek has one third-place finish (Senior Investment in 2017) among his four prior Preakness starters.


9. Bodexpress (20-1)

Jockey: John Velazquez

Trainer: Gustavo Delgado

Owners: Top Racing, Global Thoroughbred, and GDS Racing Stable

Career record: 6 starts – 0 wins – 3 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $208,700

Earnings per start: $34,783

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 103

Pedigree: Bodemeister – Pied a Terre, by City Zip

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace/stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Although he finished 13th (moved up from 14th) in the Kentucky Derby, this maiden outran his 71-1 odds in the run for the roses. Sent off as the longest shot in the 19-horse field, Bodexpress hung with pacesetter Maximum Security and pressing Long Range Toddy through the first six furlongs of the Derby before the controversial incident occurred roughly at the five-sixteenths pole through the far turn, when Maximum Security moved out several paths and impeded the progress of three horses. Bodexpress was one of those impeded, and he swiftly retreated from third after being taken up by his jockey to finish well out of contention. He had moved into the Derby starting gate following Omaha Beach’s scratch as the first also-eligible entrant and gained that alternate entry by virtue of his runner-up effort to Maximum Security in the Xpressbet Florida Derby. Bodexpress still has a lot of maturing to do, but this colt has shown enticing talent in his most recent three starts. He may very well be the longest shot in the field again when the Preakness starting gate springs open, but he should be a pace factor at the very least and could hang around long enough to make things interesting in early stretch.

Preakness history: Hall of Famer John Velazquez has had eight prior mounts in the Preakness, and finished second in 2011 aboard Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom and in 2013 on Itsmyluckyday. This will be the first Preakness for trainer Gustavo Delgado and Bodexpress’ ownership group.


10. Everfast (50-1)

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Trainer: Dale Romans

Owner: Calumet Farm

Career record: 10 starts – 1 win – 1 second – 1 third

Career earnings: $134,805

Earnings per start: $13,481

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 102

Pedigree: Take Charge Indy – Awesome Surprise, by Awesome Again

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Coming into the Preakness off of three disappointing starts, this colt is certain to be one of the longest shots in the field when the gates open – maybe the longest. Everfast took his career debut last summer at Ellis Park but in nine starts since has only come close to the winner’s circle two more times, finishing third in his fourth start in a 1 1/16-mile allowance at Churchill Downs in November and then second to Harvey Wallbanger at odds of 128.70-1 in the 1 1/16-mile Fasig-Tipton Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park in February. Since then, he has finished eighth in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes, ninth in the Xpressbet Florida Derby, and fifth in the Pat Day Mile Stakes Presented by LG and E and KU, beaten by a combined total of 43 ¾ lengths. While he picks up one of the best closing jockeys in the business in Joel Rosario, Everfast would have to not just replicate, but improve upon, his unexpected showing in the Holy Bull Stakes and then have several other Preakness horses fail to show up in order to have any chance at winning on Saturday – a very unlikely scenario to say the least. He should be near the back of the field through the first mile and could pass a few straggling horses in the stretch to improve position, but anything more than that would be a major surprise.

Preakness history: Joel Rosario will be making his sixth Preakness appearance; he finished second two years in a row on Ride On Curlin (2014) and Tale of Verve (2015) and third in 2012 aboard Creative Cause. Dale Romans is also back for the sixth time in the Preakness. He won the 2011 edition with Shackleford and finished second twice with First Dude (2010) and Cherry Wine (2016). Calumet Farm, one of the most storied names in horse racing, has been a fixture at the Preakness Stakes through the years. Under the ownership of the Wright family, Calumet tallied seven Preakness wins, with two of those horses, Whirlaway (1941) and Citation (1948), winning the Triple Crown. The final Calumet Farm horse to run in the Preakness was Hall of Famer Alydar, second to Triple Crown winner Affirmed in 1978. Calumet returned to the Preakness this decade under Brad Kelley’s ownership and has been well represented in the second jewel of the Triple Crown, with Oxbow’s win in 2013 and Bravazo’s runner-up finish to Justify last year.Bet Everfast in the Preakness Stakes.


11. Laughing Fox (20-1)

Jockey: Ricardo Santana Jr.

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Owners: Alex and JoAnn Lieblong

Career record: 7 starts – 3 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $338,518

Earnings per start: $48,360

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 99

Pedigree: Union Rags – Saskawea, by Stormy Atlantic

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This colt gained automatic entry to the Preakness by winning the inaugural running of the Oaklawn Invitational Stakes, a 1 1/8-mile race at the Hot Springs, Ark., track that went off a few minutes after the Kentucky Derby on May 4. He had raced in two of Oaklawn Park’s major Derby preps prior to the Oaklawn Invitational, finishing a disappointing seventh in the second division of the Rebel Stakes in March and then a decent fourth in the Arkansas Derby on April 16. In the Oaklawn Invitational, he rallied from eighth early on to post a hard-fought neck win and realize the potential he’d first shown when winning two route races earlier in Oaklawn’s spring 2019 meet. He will need to improve even more to hit the board in a competitive Preakness Stakes, but this colt has strong connections and a pedigree that’s suitable for 1 3/16 miles. Laughing Fox will be one of the longer shots in the Preakness, but he shouldn’t be left off of trifecta and superfecta tickets and has the look of a colt on the improve who’ll win a graded stakes race – or maybe even several of them – down the road.

Preakness history: Jockey Ricardo Santana Jr. made his Preakness debut a successful one last year, rallying late with Tenfold to finish three-quarters of a length behind eventual Triple Crown winner Justify in third, and just a neck behind Bravazo in second. Tenfold was Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen’s ninth starter in the Preakness and his second third-place finisher. He has won the classic twice, with two of the best racehorses of this century: Curlin in 2007 and superstar filly Rachel Alexandra in 2009.


12. Anothertwistafate (6-1)

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

Trainer: Blaine Wright

Owner: Peter Redekop

Career record: 6 starts – 3 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $303,505

Earnings per start: $50,584

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 103

Pedigree: Scat Daddy – Imprecation, by First Defence

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This California-based contender nearly qualified for the Kentucky Derby after posting two consecutive runner-up efforts in graded stakes races offering Derby points in March and April. Anothertwistafate was the second also-eligible for the Derby, but his connections decided to skip the May 4 classic and target the Triple Crown’s second jewel, and this talented son of Scat Daddy should be one of the top betting choices come Saturday. He emerged at Golden Gate Fields over the winter with three consecutive dominant, pacesetting wins on the synthetic Tapeta Footings main track, and was sent to New Mexico for the March 24 Sunland Park Derby to see if he could handle a dirt track after racing poorly on that surface in his career debut last year. Anothertwistafate nearly won the Sunland Derby, finishing second by a neck to Cutting Humor, and then ran well on dirt again when second to Owendale in the Stonestreet Lexington Stakes at Keeneland on April 13, where he encountered some early trouble and was boxed in during the far turn. He projects to be one of the horses competing for the early lead in the Preakness Stakes, and his new jockey, Jose Ortiz, is a very good judge of pace. This colt joins Alwaysmining as the “new shooters” with the best chance of toppling Kentucky Derby horses such as Improbable and War of Will in what is shaping up as a wide-open Preakness Stakes.

Preakness history: This will be the first Preakness starter for California trainer Blaine Wright. Jose Ortiz will be making his third consecutive Preakness start; he finished fourth aboard Good Magic last year.


13. Win Win Win (15-1)

Jockey: Julian Pimentel

Trainer: Michael Trombetta

Owner: Live Oak Plantation

Career record: 7 starts – 3 wins – 2 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $367,300

Earnings per start: $52,471

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 113

Pedigree: Hat Trick – Miss Smarty Pants, by Smarty Jones

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This stakes winner put forth the first disappointing effort in his career in the Kentucky Derby, racing far back early and moving past several tired horses to finish a non-threatening 10th (moved up to ninth after Maximum Security was disqualified). Prior to that, he had finished no worse than third and had shown versatility by winning races from a pace-pressing position and also by coming from farther back. He qualified for the Kentucky Derby with a third in the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby and then a late second in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, where he recovered from being bumped at the start and then steadied entering the far turn. If he can rebound from his poor Derby, Win Win Win has an outsider’s chance to have his connections and backers at the betting windows shouting his name and adding a fourth “Win!” when the Preakness field hits the homestretch. Look for jockey Julian Pimentel to position Win Win Win a bit closer to the early leaders than in his three prior route races, but this contender still should be in the second division of runners through the first three-quarters of a mile.

Preakness history: Charlotte Weber’s Live Oak Plantation brings Win Win Win to the Preakness as its second starter after High Fly finished 10th in 2005. Trainer Michael Trombetta will also make his second appearance; his Sweetnorthernsaint finished second to Bernardini in 2006. Win Win Win is Julian Pimentel’s third Preakness mount.

Watch the 2019 Preakness Stakes only on NBC and NBCSN. Coverage on NBCSN begins Friday, May 17 at 3 p.m. ET with the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes and continues on Saturday May 18 at 2 p.m. before moving to NBC at 5 p.m. Post time is set for approximately 6:50 p.m. See the full broadcast schedule here.

Best Kentucky Derby Prop Bets

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When it comes to the Kentucky Derby, there has been a very clear evolution in how intricate wagers can be, and how you can almost bet on any type of outcome on Derby day. We have really moved far beyond just picking a winner or a second-place finisher and moved into head-to-head wagers, bets on racing fractions, length of victory, as well as bets like how many Tweets President Donald Trump will make. Although I tend to find myself trying to rationalize and come up with quantifiable numbers to support my bet, who knows what will happen after three Mint Julep’s and being down $300 before the actual race even begins?

More from America’s Best Racing

Here are three of my favorite proposition wagers for the Kentucky Derby:

How many lengths will be winner win by? Over 1.5 (-160), or Under 1.5 (+120)

The Kentucky Derby has been decided by less than one length on 42 occasions. On the opposite end, the Derby has been won by four lengths or more 23 times.

In this year’s run for the roses there seems to be a lot of speed horses entered, or at least horses that tend to favor the front end. With a lot of vying for early positioning, a potential pace duel might ensue upfront. If that is the case, then it tends to benefit horses that are sitting just off the speed, and gives a fair shot for some of the deep closers to run down the frontrunners in the stretch.

The most likely case scenario for this bet to cash would be for faster fractions upfront and a bunched-up finish at the wire. In a field as competitive and closely matched as this one, there is a lot of value in taking the underdog option for the margin of length victory.

Will any horse win two of three Triple Crown Races? No (-175), or Yes (+135)

The odds on this sure have changed since Justify became the 13th Triple Crown winner in history. Since 2002 there have been many near misses – six – with War Emblem, Funny Cide, Smarty Jones, Big Brown, I’ll Have Another, and California Chrome.

Triple Crown winners tend to come in bunches with three winners in the 1930s, four in 1940s, and three in the 1970s. This trend seems to be really be factored in to the odds of this wager, and the recency bias of Justify capturing the bid last year.

With the Kentucky Derby field as wide open as it has been in years, and with no overwhelming favorite – cash on an easy proposition wager this weekend and bet the “No.”

The Last Place Saddlecloth Number Will be? Odd (-200), or Even (+160)

This number seems to overvalue the fact that the longest shot on the board draws post 15. Although there are two 50-1 morning-line runners, the Japanese horse #15 Master Fencer will likely go off at higher odds than that at the call to the post.

Despite who performs or underperforms based on their odds, the most likely last-place finisher is a runner who records a DNF or has to pull up. This can often happen due to unforeseeable circumstances and is something you cannot handicap for. Assuming that the race is run smoothly, five of the 10 runners at 20-1 odds or higher will be breaking out of a gate with an even saddlecloth number. At +160, that seems like a lot of value to take a 50/50 proposition bet.

Good luck this weekend, and enjoy the “most exciting two minutes in sports!”

Special Kentucky Derby Prop Bet Bonus – Picks from BlackJack Fletcher

Will There Be a Triple Crown Winner? No (-700)

The horses in this field are simply too close in terms of talent in order for one to truly separate themselves. There are a lot of very talented horses in this year’s field, but not a truly transcendent one. Lay the juice on the no.

Over/Under 1.5 Lengths Margin of Victory in Kentucky Derby: Under (+120)

We have seen Game Winner in neck-and-neck battles in both the Rebel Stakes and the Santa Anita Derby. I expect to see him in a close battle again.

Will Secretariat‘s Record Winning Time Be Broken? No (-7500)

There is a reason this prop is set at -7500. It is not going to happen. There have been a lot of unbelievable, once in a generation horses since Secretariat, and none have touched his time of 1:59.40. This is not the year it is going to happen.

Will There Be a Wire-to-Wire Winner? No (-1000)

With Omaha Beach scratched, the speed in this race is really just Maximum Security. I expect him to be on the lead early and fade as the field turns for home. I will lay the juice and say there is no wire-to-wire winner this Saturday.

What Post Position Will The Winner Come From? 16-20 (+130)

This bet gives you both Game Winner (#16) and Roadster (#17) which are two of the top three choices and you’re still getting plus money. This is easily the best value among these bets.