Ten Tips on Betting the Kentucky Derby
Betting on the Kentucky Derby
doesn't have to be a crapshoot ...
Here's the Top
10 list on what to do or avoid when handicapping the Kentucky Derby, Dave Letterman
style, so pay attention!
Don't wait until Derby
Day to decide on what you can afford to wager and the kind of bets you
will make. Set a total dollar amount and stick to it, win or lose, unless one
of your selections is scratched.
9. Don't try to assimilate so much information that you become confused.
Stay with the handicapping formula that works best for you.
Thoroughbreds that didn't race as a 2-year-old haven't smelled the roses since
the 19th century. Apollo did it in 1882. Other winners of Triple Crown races
that year: Vanguard in the Preakness and Forester in the Belmont.
No runner with only four career outings has won since Exterminator in 1918.
There were so many horses (26) in that year's Preakness that it was run in two
divisions. The winners: War Cloud and Jack Hare Jr.
Avoid horses with a pedigree that don't display both stamina and speed. In
19 of the past derbies, 13 horses with Buckpasser
in their bloodline finished first or second. Ironically, quarter-cracks kept him
off the Triple Crown trail, but he won 13 in a row after running second in his
3-year-old debut. His victories in '66 included the Travers, American Derby, Woodward
and Jockey Gold Cup.
Only one horse has visited the winner's circle without taking a stakes race
during his or her early career since Proud Clarion in '67: that was Giacomo
The last winner after running fifth or worse in the final prep was Iron Liege
in '57. Only two horses that were fourth in their last prep since the '50s
won: Thunder Gulch in '95 and Sea Hero in '93, both in the Blue Grass.
Since 1947, only Sunny's Halo won off two preps - the '83 Rebel Stakes and
Arkansas Derby. Forget about horses with one or no stateside preps.
Don't waste your money betting the post time favorite to win. Since Spectacular
Bid lived up to his odds in '79, only two have: Smarty Jones in '04 and Fusaichi
Pegasus in '00. Trifectas offer much bigger returns even when one or two low-priced
horses hit the board.
about the horse-for-the-course angle. In the past decade,
no 3-year-old that had one or more starts at Churchill Downs repeated
in the Run for the Roses. The average finish of nearly 50 runners,
including 21 that had previously won over the main track, was
well off the board.
© Doc's Sports
Greg Melikov of Doc's
Sports for more Kentucky Derby information.