The post positions for the 2013 Kentucky Derby are set, and excitement is building in preparation for Saturday night's big race at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.
Without a clear-cut favorite in the field, there are a number of horses that have very realistic chances at coming away with the title at the first leg of this year's Triple Crown. Therefore, it should make for a tight race.
On Friday, the field got one horse smaller when long shot Black Onyx was diagnosed with a bone chip and had to be scratched from the race (via USAToday.com)
With so many talented horses in the field, even though Orb and Verrazano are slotted as the safest bets at 7-2 and 4-1, respectively, there are at least a handful of other contenders that appear capable of being the first over the finish line.
Heading into tonight's Derby, here are some bold predictions based on post positions.
Mylute and Normandy Invasion Will Cancel Out
Both Mylute and Normandy Invasion, based on talent alone, should be in contention at least for the early stages of the Derby.
But with Mylute in No. 5 and Normandy Invasion next door in No. 6, the two could end up creating problems for one another, taking both horses out of the running.
Normandy Invasion came close to taking down Verrazano at the Wood Memorial, but it won't happen tonight, as the two middle-range contenders will hold each other back down the stretch.
Orb Will Finish Second
Jockey Joel Rosario and Orb have looked great recently, including a big win at the Florida Derby, which is why he's the favorite heading into the race.
In No. 16, Orb is next to a pair of 20-1 shots in Charming Kitten and Will Take Charge, so he's going to have the opportunity to get out to a good start and ahead of the horses next to him.
And, down the stretch, he'll pass Verrazano, who is situated two spots away at No. 14.
But in the end, there will be an upset, and Orb will be the second horse across the finish line.
Rick Pitino Will Leave Happy
In 2013, it seems like everything Rick Pitino gets his hands on turns to gold. On Saturday, Goldencents will win the Kentucky Derby.
His recent performances have been impressive, and as the third-ranked contender going into the race, people have taken notice.
Owned in part by 2013 NCAA champion Rick Pitino, Goldencents captured the title at the Santa Anita Derby this year. In the race's history, seven winners have gone on to win at Churchill Downs.
At 5-1, Goldencents has a very real chance at racing to victory, and being in No. 8 will certainly aid his cause.