Despite an empty track at Churchill Downs on Wednesday evening, the 2014 Kentucky Derby provided a great deal of excitement.
This is because the official draw determining the field, post positions and odds took place.
Owners, jockeys, trainers, media, bettors and casual fans all awaited the fate of their respective horses as each card was pulled.
Packed crowd at Kentucky Derby draw. Sardine-like. pic.twitter.com/HuAeGbkK0Q— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncan_) April 30, 2014
In the draw's aftermath, some horses had odds shift in a good way—others were not so fortunate.
Post positions are incredibly important to race strategies.
Starting on the inside requires a fast break from the gate to avoid getting pinned against the rail. Starting in the middle allows for the chance to set a desired pace. Starting on the outside requires plenty of ground to make up throughout the race.
Before we get into the positions of this year's field, the first order of business is to ensure not a moment of action is missed from wherever you may be when the race takes place.
Let's take a look at the full race schedule, live stream information and the best way to view the race on a mobile device if you happen to be on the road.
When: Saturday, May 3
Where: Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky
Event Time: 4 p.m. ET
Post Time: 6:24 p.m. ET
Live Stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Post Positions and Odds
Here's a look at this year's field, along with their post positions and corresponding odds:
|1||Vicar's In Trouble||30-1|
|7||We Miss Artie||50-1|
|8||General A Rod||15-1|
|12||Dance With Fate||20-1|
|19||Ride On Curlin||15-1|
Obviously, there was a mixture of enthusiasm and hesitance among trainers following the draw.
After getting the first position, Mike Marker, trainer of Vicar's In Trouble, had this to say during an interview with Darren Rogers of KentuckyDerby.com:
I know we didn't have much choice, but I don't have to walk too far to saddle the horses, and maybe our riders will be friendly and give each other enough space. Hopefully, we get a good break out of Vicar like we usually do, and we get a good position pretty early.
On the other end of the spectrum, trainer James Jerkens of Wicked Strong, who drew the 20th position, was a little more hesitant about his chances:
It might be that speed is quick and they get to rolling in a clump and he can draft in behind them and it'll work out OK. The one positive is that he's not in the gate very long. I'm trying to convince myself that it's not a bad post, but I don't know if I can.
The anxiety over this prestigious race is at an all-time high. All we can do right now is wait with bated breath until it's finally time for these horses to take the track at Churchill Downs on May 3.