The start of a new calendar year means that we are edging nearer to the time when selections will be made for the Kentucky Derby. The opening leg of the Triple Crown will be staged on the first Saturday in May, and it is looking set to be one of the most competitive in recent memory.
2024 Kentucky Derby Futures Picks
- Pick: Nysos (+1500)
- Pick: Timberlake (+4000)
At this stage, there is no clear front-runner in the Kentucky Derby odds, but important prep races over the next two months could be pivotal in determining the most likely contender. You can find the latest Horse Racing odds and our early 2024 Kentucky Derby predictions right here.
Kentucky Derby 2024 Information
Kentucky Derby 2024
Location of the race: Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky
Date & Time: Saturday, May 4, 2024.
How To Watch: NBC
Kentucky Derby 2024 Odds
|Odds to Win
|City of Troy
|Book Em Danno
Fierceness is the early favorite for one of the hottest upcoming horse races, with the Todd Pletcher runner priced up at +1200 for the opening leg of the Triple Crown after winning the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Nysos is the shortest-priced runner from the Bob Baffert yard after winning on each of his two starts.
The three-year-old is currently available at +1600. Locked, Muth, and Track Phantom are all available at +2000, with Coach Prime priced up at +2200.
Key Upcoming Kentucky Derby Preps
The Road to the Kentucky Derby is already well underway, but the significance of the preps will be stepped up a gear over the coming months. Among the standout horse racing events to consider with the Derby in mind over the opening three months of the year, including the Rebel, Fountain of Youth, and the Tampa Bay Derby.
However, the big scoring races to watch with increased attention when it comes to making 2024 Kentucky Derby predictions take place across late March and early April. The Florida Derby and Arkansas Derby are both staged on March 30, before the Blue Grass, Santa Anita Derby, and Wood Memorial could be the most intriguing preps, with all staged on April 6.
Leading Kentucky Derby 2024 Contenders
Todd Pletcher’s Fierceness has already made a strong case for his position at the top of the betting for the Derby this year. The three-year-old has won two from three career starts and was stunning when landing the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile by over six lengths from Muth.
The step up in distance brought out massive improvement in the runner, but further progression will be required to cement his claims as one of the standout Kentucky Derby predictions.
The 150th Derby will be a massive event, but it is also worth remembering that Bob Baffert will once again be eligible to make entries. He undeniably holds a number of leading chances, but none have been as impressive as Nysos to this point.
The three-year-old was a winner by over ten lengths on debut at Santa Anita, beating Urban Legend. Nysos landed a near nine-length victory over Stronghold at Del Mar, thus franking that form on his previous appearance. He certainly appears to be the Baffert A-team for the Derby this year.
Locked remains among the leading contenders for the Derby in 2024, despite having finished over six lengths behind Fierceness in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
Prior to that effort, the three-year-old has won twice from three starts, and was mightily impressive when landing the G1 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland by just under a length from The Wine Steward. He didn’t really run his race in the Juvenile, but we’ll expect a response from him in early 2024.
Outsiders To Consider
When assessing the odds of how to bet on horse racing, it is easy to see that there is value at this point in the betting. Timberlake was among the standout selections for the Juvenile at Santa Anita, but the Brad Cox runner faded quickly to finish fourth. However, he is now available at +4000 for the Derby, which could be an excellent price based on his victory over Fierceness when landing the G1 Champagne Stakes by over four lengths.
Real Men Violin could also be a runner to keep tabs on for trainer Kenneth McPeek. The three-year-old already has plenty of experience at Churchill Downs, having won over a mile at the track in October, before finishing second with a 93-speed figure in the G2 Kentucky Jockey Club. That track experience could be a vital factor to consider before making 2024 Kentucky Derby predictions.
Early Kentucky Derby 2024 Prediction
At this early stage, we are very sweet about the chances of Nysos for Bob Baffert in our horse racing predictions. The three-year-old looked incredibly progressive when winning twice as a two-year-old, and further improvement could be expected over an extended distance. Timberlake may also be a runner worth keeping on side after failing to produce his effort in the Juvenile.
- Pick: Nysos (+1500)
- Pick: Timberlake (+4000)
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