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Kentucky Derby Odds and Picks

2017 Kentucky Derby Predictions

The 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby takes place on Saturday, with Classic Empire, Always Dreaming and Irish War Cry vying for the role of favorite. Those three horses are each listed with odds of about 6-1. The favorite has won the Kentucky Derby in each of the last four years with Orb winning in 2013, California Chrome in 2014, American Pharoah in 2015 and Nyquist last year. Let’s look at Saturday’s race and Kentucky Derby picks.

Bet the Kentucky Derby

Kentucky Derby Odds

Classic Empire +525

Always Dreaming +550

Irish War Cry +575

McCraken +800

Gunnevera +950

Girvin +1500

Gormley +1600

Practical Joke +1760

Thunder Snow +1780

Tapwrit +1800

Hence +2065

Battle of Midway +2300

Looking at Lee +2500

J Boys Echo +3000

Irap +3340

Royal Mo +3700

Sonneteer +4300

State of Honor +4500

Untrapped +4500

Master Plan +5000

Patch +5450

Local Hero +6500

Iliad +6500

Fast And Accurate +8000

Petrov +8500

Top Contenders

There is a good chance that Classic Empire will go off as the morning line favorite in the Kentucky Derby. The horse was the best 2-year old last year, as he won the Breeder's Futurity and Breeder's Cup Juvenile. He ran third in the Holy Bull Stakes because of a foot abscess. Classic Empire came back to win the Arkansas Derby. He is trained by Mark Casse, ridden by Julien Leparoux and his sire is Pioneerof the Nile who sired 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah.

Always Dreaming should be the second or third choice in the betting. The horse has won all three starts this year including a win over State of Honor in the Florida Derby. The horse is trained by Todd Pletcher and ridden by John Velazquez.

Irish War Cry was looking like the favorite for the Derby but then he finished poorly in the Fountain of Youth. He did bounce back to win the Wood. He is trained by Graham Motion and ridden by Rajiv Maragh.

McCraken has been getting a lot of attention in the betting odds of late, which is somewhat surprising considering he finished third in the Blue Grass. He doesn’t have a marquee trainer, as Ian Wilkes is not a big name and Brian Hernandez is not a marquee jockey.

Gunnevera has been beaten by a number of Kentucky Derby contenders including Irish War Cry and Always Dreaming. He is trained by Antonio Sano and ridden by Javier Castellano.


This year’s Kentucky Derby really looks like a race where a longshot could win. There are a number of horses that fit including Girvin who leads the Kentucky Derby point standings. Girvin will be ridden by Mike Smith who will take over in place of Brian Hernandez. Another horse that could hit at double-digit odds is Gormley who is third in the Kentucky Derby point standings. He is trained by John Shirreffs and he is ridden by Victor Espinoza. Don’t forget about Irap who is trained by Doug O’Neill who had Nyquist last year.

Kentucky Derby Picks

There is no question that Classic Empire or Always Dreaming could end up winning the Derby as the favorite but I am going with longshots this year. I will take Hence at 20-1, as he is underrated, Irap at 33-1, as he has strong connections, and Patch at 54-1, as he should be a strong closer.

Check out the latest Kentucky Derby odds at BetDSI sportsbook.