Horse Racing

Kentucky Derby Odds 2014: Top Picks, Updated Vegas Lines for 140th Race

LOUISVILLE, KY - APRIL 29: Wicked Strong is ridden by Kelvin Pahal during the morning exercise session in preparation for the140th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on April 29, 2014 in Louisville, Kentucky.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Chris RolingFeatured ColumnistMay 1, 2014

Believe it or not, the 2014 Kentucky Derby draw, like any draw for the annual spectacle, is just as important as the race itself.

Just look at the odds.

The Derby itself is guesswork for bettors. This horse is too inside near the rail, so he could simply get lost in the shuffle and never recover, right? That one is far enough outside to break away from the pack, but does he have enough speed to keep pace for the entire two minutes?

Still, it's some of the most fun sports fans can have all year. Do some research on the posts and horses, and walk away with some cash too.

 

2014 Kentucky Derby Lineup

2014 Kentucky Derby Post Positions
Post Horse Jockey Trainer Owner
1 Vicar's In TroubleRosie NapravnikMike MakerKenneth L. and Sarah K. Ramsey
2 Harry's HolidayCorey LanerieMike MakerSkychai Racing LLC, Sand Dollar Stable, LLC, Terry Raymond & Jana Wagner
3 Uncle SighIrad Ortiz Jr.Gary ContessaWounded Warrior Stables & Anthony C. Robertson
4 DanzaJoe BravoTodd PletcherEclipse Thoroughbred Partners
5 California ChromeVictor EspinozaArt ShermanSteve and Carolyn Coburn & Perry and Denise Martin
6 SamraatJose OrtizRick Violette Jr.My Meadowview Farm
7 We Miss ArtieJavier CastellanoTodd PletcherKenneth L. and Sarah K. Ramsey
8 General a RodJoel RosarioMike MakerStarlight Racing & Skychai Racing, LLC
9 VinceremosJoe Rococo Jr.Todd PletcherWinStar Farm LLC and Twin Creeks Racing
10 Wildcat RedLuis SaezJose GaroffaloHonors Stable Corp.
11 Hoppertunity (scratched)Mike SmithBob BaffertKarl Watson, Mike Pegram & Paul Weitman
12 Dance With FateCorey NakataniPeter EurtonS. Alesia, Bran Jam Stable & Ciaglia Racing, LLC
13 ChituMartin GarciaBob BaffertTanma Corporation
14 Medal Count Robby AlbaradoDale RomansSpendthrift Farm
15 Tapiture Ricardo Santana Jr.Steve AsmussenWinchell Thoroughbreds
16 Intense HolidayJohn VelazquezTodd PletcherStarlight Racing
17 Commanding CurveShaun BridgmohanDallas StewartWest Point Thoroughbreds
18 Candy BoyGary StevensJohn SadlerC R K Stable LLC
19 Ride On CurlinCalvin BorelWilliam G. GowanDaniel J. Dougherty
20 Wicked StrongRajiv MaraghJames A. Jerkens Centennial Farms
KentuckyDerby.com

 

Updated Odds

2014 Kentucky Derby Odds
Horse Odds
California Chrome 11-4
Wicked Strong 7-1
Danza 9-1
Hoppertunity scratched
Samraat 16-1
Intense Holiday 18-1
Dance With Fate 20-1
Ride On Curlin 20-1
Vicar's in Trouble 20-1
Wildcat Red 20-1
Candy Boy 25-1
Tapiture 28-1
Social Inclusion 33-1
General a Rod 33-1
Chitu 33-1
We Miss Artie 40-1
Medal Count 40-1
Uncle Sigh 40-1
Commanding Curve 40-1
Vinceremos 50-1
Harry's Holiday 50-1
OddsShark.com

 

Top Picks

Wicked Strong 7-1

LOUISVILLE, KY - APRIL 30:  Wicked Strong runs on the track during the morning training for the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on April 30, 2014 in Louisville, Kentucky.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Look, California Chrome is the odds-on favorite, but the returns make the investment price a bit too much to ask.

Let's talk some Wicked Strong instead.

Bettors may shy away from Wicked Strong thanks to the No. 20 post, but David Grening of the Daily Racing Form captures the thoughts of those in the know, who suggest the post may work in the horse's favor:

Why perfect? Wicked Strong has steady burst, endurance and, well, a wicked ability to kick into final gear in the closing stretches. Horses with similar skill sets have won from the outside in the past, and, given the odds, Vegas seems to understand that. The payout is worth the risk.

 

Danza 9-1

LOUISVILLE, KY - APRIL 30:  Danza ridden by Ezequiel Perez goes over the track during the morning exercise session in preparation for the 140th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on April 30, 2014 in Louisville, Kentucky.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

The No. 4 slot isn't horrible, but it's interesting how much firepower Danza has next to him. On one side is California Chrome; on the other side is Uncle Sigh.

So why the favorable odds? Danza might just have the quickest step of all, meaning he has the ability to break free from the pack early and ride strong endurance to the win.

At the Races' Steve Byk says Danza got the best draw of any horse in terms of post and skill set:

Forget skill set for a minute and look at something as simple as history, which Yahoo! Sports' Pat Forde points out:

Any way you slice it, Danza is a superb pick, and the payout is sound.

 

 

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