California Chrome is a dominant favorite at 5-2 in the morning line for the Kentucky Derby. The Art Sherman trainee was considered a big favorite prior to the posts being set, and Wednesday's draw did nothing to change that.
Chrome will be coming out of the fifth gate. That post has fielded eight winners since 1930 with the latest being Funny Cide in 2003. He is far from the only worthwhile play, however.
Have a look at all the posts and odds, and then I'll point out the horses I'll be keeping an eye on.
|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|
Source: NBC Sports
Getting to Know the Favorite
California Chrome is an overwhelming favorite for a reason. He's been consistently dominant in a field where consistency is lacking.
Chrome has won his last four starts and done so by over a combined 24 lengths. His last time out came in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby. He won by over four lengths.
On top of his dominant resume, California Chrome is easy to root for. His pedigree is so unremarkable he defies logic even being in the race. His owners, Steve Coburn and Perry Martin, work day jobs, and trainer Art Sherman is making his first appearance in the Derby as a trainer. He is 77.
The owners are so attached to Chrome and their current situation that they've turned down barrels of cash to sell their prized colt. Yahoo Sports' Pat Forde highlights:
"The answer wasn't no. It was hell no." Why California Chrome's owners declined a huge offer for their Derby horse. http://t.co/Kt1Ws1lE7c— Pat Forde (@YahooForde) April 30, 2014
It would be great for the sport if this horse made a run at the triple crown.
The odds on California Chrome are going to be very low. To get a decent payout, bettors will have to hit on a different horse. I have my eye on two, and they both happen to be starting on the side of California Chrome.
Which horse will finish higher?
Danza is in the fourth post and is listed at 10-1. Samraat is in the sixth post and listed at 15-1. This creates a group, along with Chrome, of three horse who can pace against each other while planning for the win.
Both Danza and Samraat have the speed to hang with the favorite.
Danza proved his worth in his last start when he dominated at the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn. That was just his second start after a seven-month layoff due to some knee trouble, and he looked like a horse hitting his stride.
Danza is a Todd Pletcher trainee. Pletcher won the Derby in 2010 with Super Saver. Super Saver drew the fourth post for his historic run.
Samraat carries a far different resume than Danza. He was undefeated in five races before his last start when he came in second to Wicked Strong. After a rough start, Samraat looked great down the stretch in that race.
TVG's Caleb Keller knows Samraat is a good play:
For me the most undervalued is Samraat. Not flashy. Hard hitter with a great style. J Ortiz should ride with confidence & nothing to lose.— Caleb Keller (@calebtvg) April 30, 2014
The consistent results are a strong indication Samraat is ready to finish in the money, and at 15-1, he's a solid play to win.