Kentucky Derby Odds 2013: Analyzing Wise Long-Shot Bets

Matt Fitzgerald@@MattFitz_geraldCorrespondent IIIMay 1, 2013

Trainer D. Wayne Lukas (right) has two underdogs that could shock the world at the 2013 Kentucky Derby.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas (right) has two underdogs that could shock the world at the 2013 Kentucky Derby.Rob Carr/Getty Images

The 2013 Kentucky Derby odds are bound to fluctuate constantly, but it is worth looking at the early lines in an effort to follow the proper horses worth placing wagers on.

Whether Orb or Verrazano is officially dubbed the favorite at Churchill Downs remains to ultimately be seen. However, both are considered the consensus favorites to capture victory in the first leg of the Triple Crown, which is in its 139th annual running.

Here is a breakdown of the field as it stands, odds for every horse and then a particular focus on the under-the-radar horses that have the potential to shock the horse-racing world in Louisville.

Complete Field and Odds

Note: Odds were obtained from Mike Watchmaker of the Daily Racing Form.






Todd Pletcher

John R. Velazquez



Claude R. McGaughey III

Joel Rosario



Doug O'Neill

Kevin Krigger


Java's War

Kenny McPeek

Julien Leparoux



Todd Pletcher

Calvin Borel



Todd Pletcher

Rafael Bejarano


Lines of Battle

Aidan O'Brien

Ryan Moore



Rudy Rodriguez

Garrett Gomez


Will Take Charge

D. Wayne Lukas

Jon Court



Eddie Plesa, Jr.

Elvis Trujillo


Black Onyx

Kelly Breen

Joe Bravo


Palace Malice

Todd Pletcher

Mike Smith


Normandy Invasion

Chad Brown

Javier Castellano


Frac Daddy

Kenny McPeek

Victor Lebron



Tom Amoss

Rosie Napravnik



D. Wayne Lukas

Gary Stevens


Falling Sky

John Terranova II

Gabriel Saez


Charming Kitten

Todd Pletcher

Edgar Prado


Golden Soul

Dallas Stewart

Robby Albarado


Giant Finish

Anthony W. Dutrow

Jose L. Espinoza


Long Shots Worth Betting On

Palace Malice (30-1)

The Todd Pletcher factor looms large here, as does the fact that Mike Smith gets the mount. Smith won the 2005 Kentucky Derby and is one of the most consistent jockeys in the sport.

Palace Malice's birthday is today, and if he could talk, he would certainly be hoping to draw a strong post position in an effort to get further inside at the starting gates.

The horse has slowly worked his way up to this level, finishing third in the Grade II Risen Star Stakes and then runner-up in the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland this past month, per KentuckyDerby.com.

That upward trend is an extremely encouraging sign, and though Pletcher will be counting on Verrazano and Revolutionary as likelier candidates to win the Run for the Roses, don't be surprised if Palace Malice's speed allows him to sneak into the top three.

Oxbow (20-1)

D. Wayne Lukas has one of the most talented, underrated thoroughbreds at his disposal, and Gary Stevens is returning from retirement just to ride Oxbow.

Stevens is a three-time Kentucky Derby champion and feels as though he is riding better now than he had in the last four or five years of his career.

Unfortunately, the first outing with Stevens aboard didn't go as planned, with Oxbow finishing fifth in the Arkansas Derby (h/t Horse Racing Nation). Now that Stevens has had time to adjust to him and kicked off the expected rust from his long layoff, the odds should continue on the uptick for Oxbow.

The horse is a physical specimen that loves to be aggressive and simply needs to be ridden properly and turned loose a little more by Stevens in an effort to be a greater factor.

There is a strong team surrounding Oxbow, which should allow him to run better than expected and reward those who take a risk on him.

Will Take Charge (20-1)

Lukas has another possible contender in Will Take Charge, who came about by sire Unbridled's Song. The champion of the 1996 Florida Derby and Wood Memorial Stakes finished in fifth as the favorite in that Kentucky Derby.

However, Will Take Charge has a win to his credit at the Grade III Rebel Stakes, which should only help give him momentum entering this one.

Distance is somewhat of a concern because Will Take Charge tends to start more quickly than he finishes. At the Rebel Stakes, that was a bit of a different story as Jon Court got his horse going to take over completely in the last 100 yards.

That closing burst shows that Will Take Charge can, well, take charge of a race. If he can just maintain the pace set by the slightly more talented competitors early, he has as good a chance as any horse of exploding down the final stretch to victory.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.