Kentucky Derby Field 2022: Entries List, Betting Lines and Picks

Maurice Bobb@@ReeseReportFeatured ColumnistMay 5, 2022

Kentucky Derby Field 2022: Entries List, Betting Lines and Picks

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    The Kentucky Derby, the first and perhaps most important leg of the Triple Crown, is just two days away and horse racing fans will finally get to see what the race looks like without a Bob Baffert-trained colt on the track.

    Zandon, this year's betting favorite to win in the field of 20 thoroughbreds at 3-1, enters the 148th Run for the Roses having won the Grade 1 Blue Grass at Keeneland just a month ago.

    Joining the Chad Brown-trained horse in the top three projected finishers are Epicenter (7-2) and Messier (8-1).

    With Baffert out, there's a really good chance that a dark horse could emerge to surprise the three favorites to $3 million purse and make it a very interesting run for the Triple Crown going into the Preakness Stakes later this month. 

    The Greatest Two Minutes in Sports is scheduled to run this Saturday, May 7, at Churchill Downs in Louisville, with a post time of 6:57 p.m ET.

    The storied event will be televised live on NBC or fans can stream it on

Kentucky Derby 2022 Post Positions and Odds

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    1. Mo Donegal (10-1)

    2. Happy Jack (30-1)

    3. Epicenter (7-2)

    4. Summer Is Tomorrow (30-1)

    5. Smile Happy (20-1)

    6. Messier (8-1)

    7. Crown Pride (20-1)

    8. Charge It (20-1)

    9. Tiz The Bomb (30-1)

    10. Zandon (3-1)

    11. Pioneer Of Medina (30-1)

    12. Taiba (12-1)

    13. Simplification (20-1)

    14. Barber Road (30-1)

    15. White Abarrio (10-1)

    16. Cyberknife (20-1)

    17. Classic Causeway (30-1)

    18. Tawny Port (30-1)

    19. Zozos (20-1)

    20. Ethereal Road (30-1)

    Odds via

Preview and Picks

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    Based on the top three betting favorites, the smart money at this point in the week is on Zandon, Epicenter or Messier to take the lead down the stretch and cross the finish line first.

    For bettors with ice water in their veins, the pick might be Zandon, but for those that aren't as sure, maybe the best option is going with a place bet with either of the top three.

    A good idea for a show bet might be Taiba, who used to be trained by Baffert, but is now trained by Tim Yakteen.

    Taiba upset Messier last month and came in first at the Santa Anita Derby to qualify for the 148th Run for the Roses.

    "It’s the hand that was dealt us," Yakteen told Jim Chairusmi of the Wall Street Journal. "We were fortunate to run [Taiba] in the Santa Anita Derby and find out he is an exceptionally gifted horse. We always knew he was talented."

    As with any race of this caliber, there is always room for doubt on which horse crossing the finish line first.

    The experts chose Zandon, but there is always a good chance for a surprise colt to break free and pull off the upset.

    Mo Donegal drew the rail, but it's a horst that might fit that bill.

    Trained by Hall of Famer and two-time Derby winner Todd Pletcher and ridden by jockey Ortiz Jr., Mo Donegal has a real shot at Churchill Downs.

    "He didn't win his first race, but he came charging from behind just like he does now," CEO of Donegal Racing Jerry Crawford told Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register. "If he's in contact with the leaders, turning for him, and he's got a seam ahead of him, then it could be a big day."

    Another sleeper pick is Tiz the Bomb, currently sitting at 30-1 odds.

    If the Jeff Ruby Steaks at Turfway Park winner does manage to finish first, it will be the colt's first grade-one victory and give trainer Kenny McPeek, who is zero for six in the Derby, his first win.

    "Any horse that makes a million dollars the way he’s done it up to now, this horse has every bit of a chance,” McPeek told Jessie Oswald of the NKyTribune.

    Win: Zandon

    Place: Taiba

    Show: Epicenter