2023 Kentucky Derby Update: Contenders, Long Shots, & Betting Favorites

2023 Kentucky Derby Update: Contenders, Long Shots, & Betting Favorites

The Kentucky Derby field is set. Oddsmakers have made Todd Pletcher trained Forte the top choice. Second choice on the morning line is Todd’s second runner, Tapit Trice. Practical Move and Angel of Empire also qualify as favorites.

Check updated Kentucky Derby betting lines and analysis for the favorites, contenders, and long shots.


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149th Kentucky Derby | Grade I stakes race
When: Saturday, May 6, 2023
Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY
Distance & Surface: 1 ¼ miles on dirt


2023 Kentucky Derby Updated Favorites

Forte +300 | Tapit Trice +500 | Angel of Empire +800

Forte can win the Derby but the odds make the Pletcher runner an underlay. Not only that, but Forte may have peaked in the Florida Derby. Also, this is by far the toughest field he’s ever faced.

Tapit Trice can also win the Derby. However, the son of Tapit offers low odds. Not only that, but there’s a chance Tapit Trice goes off the chalk on Derby Day.

No doubt, the top play among the three favorites is Angel of Empire. The Brad Cox trained runner shows ascending speed ratings, has a wicked turn of foot, and shouldn’t be lower than +600 when they break from the gate.

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2023 Kentucky Derby Updated Contenders

Derma Sotogake +1000 | Practical Move +1000 | Kingsbarns +1200 | Verifying +1500 | Two Phil’s +1500

If Derma Sotogake is as good as advertised, the Japanese runner can lead these gate to wire. But Derma can also rate behind Kingsbarns.

Kingsbarns would have to take a massive leap forward to lead these gate to wire. The Pletcher trained runner could, but it’s not likely. Horses prepping in the Louisiana Derby usually don’t show their best on the First Saturday in May.

Practical Move may struggle to get the distance. The Santa Anita Derby winner should get a decent trip behind the speed, but Move struggled home the final eighth in the SA Derby. He’s got to go another eighth on Saturday.

Verifying will run up front and should get toasted. Two Phil’s will run behind. So if you don’t like Derma Sotogake and want a different contender offering excellent odds, Two Phil’s is the play.

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2023 Kentucky Derby Updated Long Shots

Long Shots:
Skinner +2000 | Hit Show +3000 | Lord Miles +3000

All three listed longshots have a chance. The top pick among the three is Hit Show. The Brad Cox trained runner has 3 firsts and a second from 5 races.

The second came by a nose to Lord Miles in the Grade 2 Wood Memorial Derby. Hit Show appeared to have the win in the bag. If Manuel Franco can make a decent trip from post-position 1, for sure, Hit Show has a chance. Candy Ride on top and a Tapit broodmare suggests this one will get better with distance.

Consider Skinner and Lord Miles only if you don’t like Hit Show. Lord Miles breaks from post-position 19 and will have a lot of work to do to win the Kentucky Derby. Skinner shouldn’t be good enough. If you want to back a high-priced dog, Hit Show is the play.

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2023 Kentucky Derby Field: Post Positions, Betting Odds, Jockeys, Trainers

# Post Position Qualifying Points TrainerJockeyOdds
1. Hit Show 60 Brad Cox Manny Franco 30-1
2. Verifying 54 Brad Cox Tyler Gaffalione 15-1
3. Two Phil’s 123 Larry Rivelli Jareth Loveberry 12-1
4. Confidence Game 57 Keith Desormeaux James Graham 20-1
5. Tapit Trice 150 Todd Pletcher Luis Saez 5-1
6. Kingsbarns 100 Todd Pletcher Jose Ortiz 8-1
7. Reincarnate 45 Tim Yakteen John Velazquez 50-1
8. Mage 50 Gustavo Delgado Javier Castellano 15-1
9. Skinner 45 John Shirreffs Juan Hernandez 20-1
10. Practical Move 160 Tim Yakteen Ramon Vazquez 10-1
11. Disarm 46 Steve Asmussen Joel Rosario 30-1
12. Jace’s Road 45 Brad Cox Florent Geroux 50-1
13. Sun Thunder 54 Ken McPeek Brian Hernandez Jr. 50-1
14. Angel of Empire 154 Brad Cox Flavien Prat 8-1
15. Forte 190 Todd Pletcher Irad Ortiz Jr. 3-1
16. Raise Cain 64 Ben Colebrook Gerardo Corrales 50-1
17. Derma Sotogake (JPN) 100 Hidetaka Otonashi Christophe Lemaire 10-1
18. Rocket Can 60 Bill Mott Junior Alvarado 30-1
19. Lord Miles 104 Saffie Joseph, Jr. Paco Lopez 30-1
20. Continuar (JPN) 30 Yoshito Yahagi Ryusei Sakai 50-1
AE 21 Cyclone Mischief 45 Dale Romans Joel Rosario  30-1
AE 22 Mandarin Hero (JPN) 40 Terunobu Fujita Kazushi Kimura 20-1
AE 23 King Russell 40 Ron Moquett Rafael Bejarano 50-1
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