American Pharaoh Favorite in Kentucky Derby Futures Betting

Posted on: Oct 06, 2014

The Kentucky Derby won’t take place until May 2015 and the field won’t be set until shortly before that. You can place your bets on the race now, however, thanks to futures betting markets like the one at the Wynn Las Vegas Race and Sports Book. They’re usually one of the first to post futures odds on big races and there’s been a shake up in their numbers for the 2015 Kentucky Derby.

Following his impressive win in the Grade 1 Santa Anita’s FrontRunner Stakes, American Pharaoh is the new Kentucky Derby betting favorite. The victory was his second Grade 1 win in two tries having earlier captured the Del Mar Futurity. He’d finished an unimpressive 5th in his maiden race but is now the favorite to win the Kentucky Derby at odds of 12/1. American Pharaoh wasn’t exactly ‘overlooked’ before his back to back Grade 1 wins–he opened betting at 40/1 while most horses open at 100/1 or higher.

Of course it doesn’t take a genius to tell you that there’s simply no ‘overlay’ to bet on a Derby favorite at short odds this far out. At this stage it’s doubtful that there’s a horse in the country–even American Pharaoh–that’s not at least 25/1 or higher to just *make* the Kentucky Derby. Sharp players look for better value at higher prices. One horse that has attracted the attention of ‘wise guys’ is Holy Boss who is 125/1 despite an impressive victory by ten lengths in his debut race.

Other horses at (relatively) short odds: Carpe Diem (40/1), Competitive Edge (50/1), Cozmic One (60/1), El Kabeir (45/1), Hashtag Bourbon (60/1), I Spent It (35/1) and Savoy Stomp (75/1). Longshots about at this stage of the year with a slew of horses priced at 300/1 or higher with several priced as high as 500/1. Obviously these prices will come down as the three year old picture clarifies and the Kentucky Derby draws near. The next big adjustment will likely come after the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile is run.

The Kentucky Derby is traditionally held on the first Saturday in May which will put the 2015 race on May 2nd. The race is the first leg of the ‘Triple Crown’ and is held at Louisville’s iconic Churchill Downs.