Kentucky Derby Kicks Off Triple Crown In Louisville

Updated 12:33 PM

The first of the Triple Crown races is set for May 6, 2017 in Louisville, Kentucky. The Kentucky Derby, or the “Run for the Roses”, has been around since 1875 and covers 1 ¼ miles at Churchill Downs. The Derby draws quite the crowd, with ladies sporting the traditional huge, elaborate hats and patrons enjoying mint julep beverages. There’s a $2 million prize for the winner, which isn’t a bad payday at all.

Betting lines for the 143rd Kentucky Derby are open and there are 20 options to choose from. It’s anyone’s race to win, but Girvin is the horse currently atop the leaderboard. Oddsmakers have Girwin winning the race at +2600 odds. Classic Empire lands in second on the leaderboards and is projected to win at +450 odds. Gormley rounds out the top three on the Derby leaderboard and is set at +2000 odds of winning.

The Triple Crown is one of the most exciting series of races in the sports world. The prestigious event marks the first installment of the Triple Crown, with the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes following soon after. You can bet on all three races, either selecting the same horse to win it all or adjusting your wagers after each race. Winning the Triple Crown means winning all three races and the last time that happened was in 2015 by American Pharoah. The likelihood of another horse winning the Triple Crown is slim, but the coveted prize has been claimed a total of twelve times.

Betting lines differ between which sportsbook or racebook you use. Most US facing racebooks offer prop bets on the occurrence or non-occurrence of a single horse winning. However, most racebooks also offer what are called win, place or show bets. A win bet is just like it sounds—you bet on a specific horse to win (these are the common prop bets). A place bet means betting on a horse to either place in first or second. A show bet extends that range to the top three places. Win wagers yield the most profitable payout because you are betting on a more specific occurrence.

Some racebooks offer what are called exacta and trifecta bets, which are essentially parlays. An exacta bet means picking two horses to place in first and second, respectively. A trifecta bet means betting on three horses to place in first, second and third, respectively. The order of the winners has to match your wager for you to win, so it is understandable why the payouts for these two types of bets is so high given the risk level involved. Oddsmakers, bettors and fans alike will be watching closely as the race takes place this weekend.


2017 Pole Positions For Kentucky Derby

In the Kentucky Derby, pole position is a key factor for racers and something worth paying attention to in this year’s race. The starting position of each horse has had a historical impact on the winners. Certain stalls have produced more winners than others. For example, the No. 1 and 2 slots are more difficult for horses because they are starting close to the rails and don’t have as much room to run. The more inward you go, the luckier the stalls seem to be.

The pole positions and odds for the 2017 Kentucky Derby have been announced and are as follows: Lookin At Lee (20/1), Thunder Snow (20/1), Fast And Accurate (50/1), Untrapped (30/1), Always Dreaming (5/1), State Of Honor (30/1), Girvin (15/1), Hence (15/1), Irap (20/1), Gunnevera (15/1), Battle Of Midway (30/1), Sonneteer (50/1), J Boys Echo (20/1), Classic Empire (4/1), McCraken (5/1), Tapwrit (20/1), Irish War Cry (6/1), Gormley (15/1), Practical Joke (20/1) and Patch (30/1). Before the official Morning Lines were announced, Girvin was the favored horse and was at the top of the leaderboards. Now, it is Classic Empire that is expected to win with McCraken close behind. All horse racing fans know how unpredictable the sport is, but the proposed betting lines give an idea of what oddsmakers are thinking.