There is really nothing like the three American races known as the Triple Crown. The Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes comprise one of the most elusive and sought after prizes in all of sport. Breeders, trainers, owners, jockeys and bettors – as well as everyone else involved with horse racing on any level – maintain a laser-like focus on this trio of races designed for the best three year-old runners.
Triple Crown Odds
High stakes. Huge races. Maximum adrenaline and excitement. The Triple Crown is racing life with the volume turned up. It’s no secret that bettors come out of the woodwork to bet the Kentucky Derby and other Triple Crown races. While horse racing is essentially a niche sport in North America, the mainstream public has always shown that it will bet the Triple Crown races with great gusto – particularly when a horse like American Pharoah is chasing history. With this in mind, everyone deserves a great racebook to place those wagers even if the account sits idle for the rest of the year.
Many racebooks offer Kentucky Derby futures as well as props and matchups not available at the racetrack. Finding a good online racebook also allows bettors to take advantage of sign-up bonuses and rebates that sweeten the deal for any player.
Kentucky Derby talk begins in the early stages of each new year as the first round of preps begin in late January and early February. It builds up to a crescendo as the bigger preps like the Santa Anita Derby, Arkansas Derby and Florida Derby approach. With all this pent-up excitement in the air, future wagers have become increasingly popular among horse players.
As the name suggests, a “future” bet allows players to select a runner or runners well in advance of the big race. So, a horse that shows promise in February and might still be flying under-the-radar, can be played at generous odds via an online racebook. The risk inherent in future bets is that the runner will not live up to his potential, get injured or simply miss the Kentucky Derby for another reason, so players are best advised to accept nothing less than 30/1 for this kind of speculation. Almost all online racebooks accept future bets for the Kentucky Derby.
Triple Crown Betting
Betting the first and most significant leg of the Triple Crown, the Kentucky Derby, is unlike any other wagering event offered throughout the year in North America. With 20 horses running, the field is massive and the wagering pools are gargantuan. One of the most critical elements of handicapping the Kentucky Derby is to remember that there are always – literally always – about five or six runners who have no business being in the race. This was perhaps more true in the days before the current point system was established, but there are still a fair number of throw-outs.
One hard and fast rule for tossing a horse completely out of the mix is a quick analysis of the runner’s previous Beyer Speed Figures. In most years, the Kentucky Derby winner will have earned a Beyer Figure of close to 100 before running in the Derby.
This has been true for each of the last five Kentucky Derby winners and would certainly hold true with a larger sampling. Nyquist (2016), American Pharoah (2015), California Chrome (2014), Orb (2013) and I’ll Have Another (2012) all recorded Beyer Figures exceeding, or close to 100 in their prep races before going on to win the roses. While horses can and do improve upon their previous speed figures on Derby Day, a horse who shows a career-best Beyer Speed Figure in 80’s or low-90’s is likely too slow to seriously be considered for a win bet. This is significant because occasionally such horses are among the top betting choices based on their trainer or jockey. It’s best to remember a profoundly simple adage about horse racing: fast horses beat slow horses.