The Kentucky Derby remains one of the biggest races on the international racing calendar, and this year’s edition of the race already promises to be one of the most exciting in years. This year’s Triple Crown opener will be staged on Saturday, May 6, 2023, with Churchill Downs, once again playing host to the prestigious Grade 1.
The field for the race this year is already beginning to take shape, which means bettors are closely examining the leaderboard on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. But, what are some tips that all punters wagering on the race this year should follow?
Examine Latest Form
It goes without saying that all bettors should examine all pieces of form from all the leading contenders before making a bet on the Kentucky Derby. This also includes looking at the live Kentucky Derby odds by TwinSpires.com, as there may be a potential value angle from a previous run.
For example, the few that wagered on Rich Strike in the Derby last year all spotted that his maiden was broken at Churchill Downs. Performances in the graded company will be the most important to study, while horses that look best placed to perform better over the extended distance covered in the Classic race should also perform at Churchill Downs.
Trainers and jockeys with proven records in the Kentucky Derby should also be examined. However, that could be trickier this year given that Bob Baffert remains suspended from making entries. Instead, many of the leading contenders from the Hall of Famer’s yard will be transferred to other stables in order to line up in the Kentucky Derby.
Trainers with negative records in the Kentucky Derby should also be pointed out, which includes a trainer such as Steven Asmussen, who is still looking for his first win in the race. The most successful recent jockey in the Derby is John Velazquez, who has won the showpiece at Churchill Downs on two occasions since 2017.
Watch Prep Races
The key pieces of research for bettors occur pretty much every weekend before the race at Churchill Downs, as the prep races take place across the United States. These races will offer slightly different qualifying points for the runners involved.
One of the most important preps will take place in the form of the Santa Anita Derby, which has produced three winners of the Derby since the start of 2018. Meanwhile, some other preps on the calendar have poor records of producing Derby winners, including the Wood Memorial.
Bettors will also be looking for betting angles when it comes to the Kentucky Derby, and there is always something that could point to a winner. Favorites have consistently struggled in recent editions of the race, with each of the previous four top-priced selections failing to win the race at Churchill Downs.
Meanwhile, the only winning favorite in the previous five editions of the race was Justify in 2018. However, each of the previous three favorites has finished in the top three, including Epicenter, who took second behind Rich Strike last year.
Many bettors will often wait until the week of the Derby to make their final selection, as the post position of each of the runners could play a hugely significant role. For example, no posts have produced as many winners of the race as four and five, with both recording ten wins throughout Derby history.
Other prominent starting posts include seven, ten, and 15, which have all produced at least five winners. Meanwhile, the least successful posts are wide, with 17 failing to produce a single winner, and only one winner coming from each of the 19th and 20th stalls.