Kentucky Derby Betting Update
Gate position may be a factor in determining the Kentucky Derby best bets, and there are a few notables that come out of Wednesday's draw.
Gun Runner and Exaggerator appear to have good post positions for Saturday's race, while Danzing Candy has a bad one. Gun Runner (No. 5) and Exaggerator (No. 11) should be able to drop back and find good positions for their stalking and closing styles without having too much to the inside to deal with. The favorite, Nyquist (No. 13) should have a similar opportunity. He starts next to Mohaymen (14) and they may run together most of the race. Nyquist won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last year from Post 13.
Meanwhile, Danzing Candy drew No. 20 to the outside and will have to dash like crazy if he wants to take the frontrunning position he likes. He may be forced four or five wide early. Joining him outside are Brody's Cause (19), Majesto (18) and Mor Spirit (17), who will settle where they can.
Whitmore may be another one to watch for an upset. He suffered wide trips in both the Rebel Stakes (GII) and Arkansas Derby (GI) when finishing second and third, respectively. With a No. 10 post position Saturday, he should be looking to the inside to save ground.
Since the turn of the century, War Emblem (2002) has been the only horse to take the Kentucky Derby gate to wire. Five others have tried it since.
Bob Baffert's Mor Spirit put in a five-furlong workout in :59.80 on Monday, which has been among the impressive times at the distance on the Churchill course.
Lani worked the same distance in 1:01. But it was Tuesday morning, and the move was the third fastest of 18 at the distance.
Exaggerator did five furlongs Saturday in 1:02. But his connections are looking at conditioning more than speed. "He’s going to [start] far, far in the back," trainer Keith Desormeaux said, making no attempt to disguise his strategy.
Nyquist did a longer distance, and over at Keeneland on Friday. Regular rider Mario Gutierrez worked the favorite a mile in 1:41 in company with Grade 1 winner Ralis, ridden by an exercise rider.
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