Wednesday May 4, an overflow field of 22 was entered for the 137th Kentucky Derby. The top 20 by graded stakes earnings made it in the Kentucky Derby field with Sway Away and Ruler On Ice being eliminated.
Unlike the "draft draw" held for several years, Churchill Downs reverted back to the traditional double-blind draw last year and again this year. After the numbers were drawn, handicapper Mike Battaglia announced the morning line, saying that despite the post positions he did not make any changes. Florida Derby winner Dialed In at 4-1 is a narrow favorite over 2-year-old champion Uncle Mo, who was set at 9-2. Arkansas Derby runner-up Nehro is next at 6-1 with Arkansas Derby winner Archarcharch and Blue Grass Stakes winner Midnight Interlude both at 10-1.
Morning line favorite Dialed In drew post 8 for jockey Julien Leparoux. Trainer Nick Zito said, "I was happy with it. I think, actually, most the major players got good post positions, too. I think the draw went OK. Obviously, Archarcharch, they're going to talk about the '1,' but we were certainly happy with our draw. I thought so all week (that Dialed in would be favored). Everybody saw my horse. I guess it could have gone either way. I guess they could have put Uncle Mo at 4-1 and us 9-2, but they made us the favorite, so that's OK. I'm flattered by it, very humbled by it. We'll see what happens."
Todd Pletcher, trainer of both Uncle Mo (post 18 with John Velazquez) and Stay Thirsty (post 4, Ramon Dominguez) said, "We're happy with both the draws. We were afraid of the No. 1. We didn't want to be down there. But Uncle Mo will be OK from the 18. He wants to get a good stalking position and he can do that from there. And Stay Thirsty - we were sort of rooting for the No. 4. We had great luck there last year (with Super Saver) and we don't mind going back there again."
Nehro drew the 19 hole, a post position which has never won the Derby. Owner Ahmad Zayat said, "Well, let's put it this way, I'm told that from the 19 hole there has never been a winner so far. So I guess this would have to be a first. A first for (trainer Steve) Asmussen, a first for (jockey) Corey Nakatani, a first for 19, and a first for Zayat." Trainer Steve Asmussen added, "He hasn't been eliminated, you know what I mean? He needs to run the race of his life, but all is well. I really like the horses that are immediately to his inside; they've got pace. There are a lot of scenarios in a 20-horse field that will change how you get to the backside but I think this gives us a good chance."
Triple Crown quick links:
- Free past performances - from BRISnet (click link by Uncle Mo) for all the top contenders.
- Analyzing the top 2011 Kentucky Derby contenders - My annual analysis of the top contenders to try and select a winner by matching each to the profile of a Kentucky Derby winner using many of the more popular angles and statistical trends. No surprise there is a 3-way tie for top spot this year.
- 2011 Kentucky Derby Workout Photos - For a change it wasn't muddy this morning at Churchill Downs but it was very cold and overcast. Here are photos of and comments for 12 of the Kentucky Derby horses on the track Wednesday morning, including Uncle Mo and Archarcharch.
- Kentucky Derby Central - a guide to all things Derby
- Derby Contender Graded Stakes Earnings - This figure is what determines who can get into the Kentucky Derby as only the top 20 horses by earnings entered get to start. Updated weekly.
- Triple Crown Trail - prep race schedule with results updated weekly
- 2011 Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool Two - ran from March 11-13 and Uncle Mo wound up the favorite at 3-1 with the field next at 7-2. The Kentucky Oaks Future Wager only had a single pool this year and Kathmanblu was the favorite at 7-2.
- 2011 Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool One - ran from February 18-20 and the field was once again the favorite with Uncle Mo next.
- 2011 Triple Crown Nominations - There were 364 3-year-old thoroughbreds nominated for the 2011 Triple Crown by the January 22 early deadline. Early nominations are $600 while late nominations, which close on March 26, are $6000.
- 2010 Experimental Free Handicap - ranks the top 2-year-olds of 2010 and determines the Dual Qualifiers for the Derby
- Review: Betting the Kentucky Derby - How to Wager and Win on America's Biggest Horse Race by Dean Keppler
- Derby Weather - several forecasts for Louisville.
- Kentucky Derby and Oaks Future Wagers -There will again be three future wager pools for the Derby on February 18-20, March 11-13, and April 1-3 with both exacta and win wagering. There will be a single pool for the Oaks on March 11-13 with win and exacta wagering also.
- Kentucky Derby 101 - An overview of the Kentucky Derby from history to handicapping to how to attend. Perfect for beginners.
- Kentucky Derby Winners - all the winners with their connections and other info
- Fillies in the Kentucky Derby - information about the fillies who have run in the Kentucky Derby
- More Derby info - lots more stats and other info about the Derby
- Official Kentucky Derby site from Churchill Downs
- Derby Tickets and Seats - how to get them and which are the best seats
- Louisville Courier Journal coverage - one of your best news sources for the Derby
- Lexington Herald-Leader - another good source for Kentucky racing news
- Blood Horse Triple Crown Mania
- Thoroughbred Times Road to the Triple Crown
- DRF Kentucky Derby Special
- Triple Crown Index - the master list with even more info
|3||Twice the Appeal||Bonde||2.11||Borel||20-1|
|6||Comma to the Top||Miller||2.20 *||Valenzuela||30-1|
|7||Pants On Fire||Breen||3.00||Napravnik||20-1|
|11||Master of Hounds||O'Brien||1.07||Gomez||30-1|
|13||Mucho Macho Man||Ritvo||2.43||Maragh||12-1|
|16||Animal Kingdom||Graham Motion||1.67||Velazquez||30-1|
|SCR||Uncle Mo||Pletcher||2.20 *||Velazquez||scratched|
|20||Watch Me Go||O'Connell||2.56||Bejarano||50-1|