As the 142nd Kentucky Derby draws closer, Nyquist continues to stand as the odds-on favorite and the most wagered on contender for Saturday’s Triple Crown stakes race at Churchill Downs in Louisville.
With connections including trainer Doug O’Neill and jockey Mario Gutierrez, Nyquist is currently a 2-1 favorite with more than $257,000 worth of bets placed on him to beat out the other 19 thoroughbreds in the field, according to the race’s official site. After earning the No. 13 post position at Wednesday’s draw, Nyquist’s odds have improved from a 3-1 morning-line favorite as he eyes the eighth consecutive victory of his career.
Still, this year’s race is considered quite wide open and Nyquist isn’t a resounding favorite unlike American Pharoah last year.
Big Chief Racing’s Exaggerator is considered Nyquist’s biggest threat by horse racing experts and the betting public. The San Anita Derby victor and son of Curlin sits at 5-1 odds, a solid bump from his 8-1 morning-line odds, and expected to challenge Nyquist from the get go at post No. 11. More than $138,000 has been placed on Exaggerator to beat out Nyquist.
The next tier of contenders includes No. 5 Gun Runner (9-1), No. 17 Mor Spirit (11-1), and No. 14 Mohaymen (12-1). Trained by last year’s Derby winner Bob Baffert, Mor Spirit is coming off consecutive runners-up finishes at the San Anita and San Felipe Stakes, while trainer Kiaran McLaughlin’s Mohaymen has one of the richest pedigree’s in the field as he calls Tapit is sire.
Latest Odds To Win 142nd Kentucky Derby
1.Trojan Nation 43-1
4.Mo Tom 20-1
5.Gun Runner 9-1
6.My Man Sam 19-1
7.Oscar Nominated 39-1
12.Tom’s Ready 42-1
17.Mor Spirit 11-1
19.Brody’s Cause 16-1
20.Danzig Candy 30-1
Prediction: There’s been a ton of movement in the days leading up to this year’s Run for the Roses, which could mean Nyquist is poised for a fall from grace. However, he will be starting from the middle of the track and won’t have to work too hard in the first quarter-mile to build a lead or find the rail. Expect Nyquist, Exaggerator and No. 10 Whitemore, who will have jockey Victor Espinosa aboard, to angle for control early and battle for first, second, and third. Exaggerator should win out, with Whitmore second, and Nyquist third.