2014 Kentucky Derby Preview – Horses, Jockeys & Predictions
As you may (not) be aware, the 140th Run For The Roses Of The Kentucky Derby is Saturday at 3:24pm Pacific, (coverage by NBC). If you are not participating in the most exciting two minutes in sports, you are surely missing out. Bourbon, Betting … Bimbos?? I mean cmon?!?! Just kidding … you can get beer there too.
The Derby is more than just a horse race, it is an American cultural event like no other since the race first began in 1875, yep 1875! You know who was president in 1875?! Neither do we! That’s how long ago it was ! (Ulysses S. Grant). The Stanley Cup is often regarded as the oldest competed for trophy, well sorry hockey fans, that came almost 20 years after The Derby.
Instead of pounding sponsored drink recipes into you, we thought we would give the starving man a fishing pole (vs. a fish), because that’s how we do here around here! Below is the essential information that you need to know about the 2014 Kentucky Derby, including our predictions.
POST / HORSE TRAINER JOCKEY ODDS
1) Vicar’s in Trouble Mike Maker Rosie Napravnik 30-1
This horse is aptly named as he just drew the dreaded Death Rail.
3) Uncle Sigh Gary Contessa Irad Ortiz Jr. 30-1
Named after the Duck Dynasty’s Uncle Si, he’s been a fringe horse at the top level this year, and now has the misfortune of drawing a terrible inside post. Post three has been even worse than the one post with a god-awful 0-for-35 record in the last 35 Kentucky Derbies.
4) Danza Todd Pletcher Joe Bravo 10-1
That’s right – Who’s The Boss?! He’s one of the great sleepers in this year’s Kentucky Derby field, and a definite value at 10-1 with arguably the best trainer in the business, Todd Pletcher. Sharpies on the ground at Churchill Downs this week have been raving about this horse’s training and appearance. This horse is extremely dangerous, just like Tony Banta’s left hook.
5) California Chrome Art Shurman Victor Espinosa 5-2
The deserving Kentucky Derby favorite comes into the race on a four-race winning streak. His speed figures are top in this field and if he loses, it will definitely be an upset. The only questions is can he duplicate his California form outside of Santa Anita, and will he be cooked by racing too close and too fast, for too long. The test will come on Saturday morning.
6) Samraat Rick Violette Jose Ortiz 15-1
His name is an ancient Indian title meaning “emperor.” He has one defeat in his 7 career starts. Many horses have been able to rebound from a loss in their final race to come back and win the Kentucky Derby, so it is definitely too early to count him out. He will need to post his best speed figures to date which are on the light side. The Emperor needs to shed some clothes.
8) General A Rod Mike Maker Joel Rosario 15-1
You would think owner Armando Rodriquez would have named this horse differently. In a very unusual move, this horse was sold this week. This horse never runs a bad race, but he just might stop to look at himself in the mirror. We’re out on any thing named A-Rod.
10) Wildcat Red Jose Garaffalo Luis Saez 15-1
Wildcat Red has never finished worse than second in his career. In his three defeats, he’s been disqualified from first, beaten by a head, and beaten by a neck. In other words, he’s been very close to having a perfect 7-for-7 career record. The confusing thing about this horse is its loyalty, with a name like Wildcat Red – UK or Louisville? Calipari or Pitino ?
11) Hoppertunity Bob Baffert Mike Smith 6-1
SCRATCHED – due to a foot problem. We also hear he has not been making curfew.
14) Medal Count Dale Romans Robbie Albarado 20-1
Medal Count will be making his third start in 30 days when he runs in the Kentucky Derby. The last horse to win the Derby racing three times within 30 days was Charismatic in 1999. Medal Count is the favorite long shot by many insiders.
15) Tapiture Steve Asmussen Ricardo Santana 15-1
This horse has been the lone bright spot this year for embattled trainer Steve Asmussen, whose horses have run poorly on the heels of drug allegations. On the plus side, post 15 is best position in the Kentucky Derby the last 15 years. If they can get the prescription and dosage right Tapiture could finish high.
16) Intense Holiday Todd Pletcher John Velazquez 12-1
Slipping under the radar a bit but will be ridden by John Velazquez, who won the Kentucky Derby in 2011 aboard Animal Kingdom. Post 16 is also one of the best gates to break from in the recent history of the Kentucky Derby.
18) Candy Boy John Sadler Gary Stevens 20-1
Ran well against the top competition in California all winter and spring. Candy Boy descends from the same family as 1948 Triple Crown legend Citation. His win in the Robert B. Lewis Stakes began his Kentucky Derby dreams. He would later finish third behind California Chrome and Hoppertunity in the Santa Anita Derby. He will be ridden by Hall of Fame and Derby-winning jockey Gary Stevens.
20) Wicked Strong James Jerkens Rajiv Maragh 8-1
Wicked Strong (#4 in Derby points), whose name alludes to his owner’s hometown of Boston will run for The One Fund Boston, which supports those affected by the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings. Wicked Strong figures to be among the favorites. He’s got the credentials, having impressively won the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on April 5th.
Wicked Strong is owned by a Boston-based partnership that has pledged to donate 5 percent of any money won by the 3-year-old colt during the Triple Crown series to the fund set up for the bombing victims … and that’s wicked friggin cool of owner Donald Little Jr.
(1) Wicked Strong (2) California Chrome (3) Medal Count (4) Candy Boy
What Say You ?
Sources: Blood-Horse, USA Today