Horse Racing

American Pharoah is solid Derby favorite

American Pharoah solidified his role as the betting favorite for the Kentucky Derby (G1) at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 2 by winning his final prep in impressive fashion, his odds dropping at Sportsbook from 9/2 last week to 2/1.

The Bob Baffert trainee won the Arkansas Derby (G1) by eight lengths as the short priced favorite, a dominating performance in his second start this year. The colt won the Rebel Stakes (G2) in his previous start off a 5 ½ month layoff, rolling to a 6 ¼ length victory.

After a fifth place finish in his debut, he won the Del Mar Futurity (G1) and Frontrunner (G1) last year and was going to be the betting favorite for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) until a foot issue knocked him out of the race.

The Hall of Fame trainer Baffert will be seeking his fourth win in the Kentucky Derby and first since War Emblem took the field gate to wire in 2002, and he has a solid one-two punch.

The trainer will also saddle the undefeated Dortmund, who is currently at Derby betting odds of 9/2 at Sportsbook, good for second choice in the wagering.

The colt swept the three key Kentucky Derby preps in Southern California – the Robert B. Lewis (G3), San Felipe (G2) and Santa Anita Derby (G1). The colt amassed 170 points, good for second in the Road to the Derby points standings.

The only runner with more points is International Star with 171. The Mike Maker trainee swept the LeComte (G3), Risen Star (G2) and Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds.

Trainer Todd Pletcher will be seeking to improve on his 1 for 40 record in the Kentucky Derby by saddling four runners, his top threat being Carpe Diem, who is currently the third choice in Kentucky Derby wagering at Sportsbook at 6/1.

Carpe Diem has won four of his five career starts and is perfect in two starts this year, winning the Tampa Bay Derby (G1) and the Toyota Blue Grass (G1).

Odds to Win 2015 Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs at Sportsbook as of April 15:

American Pharoah 2/1 Dortmund 9/2 Carpe Diem 6/1 Mubtaahij 9/1 Materiality 9/1 Frosted 14/1 Firing Line 14/1 Upstart 16/1 International Star 16/1 El Kabeir 25/1 Ocho Ocho Ocho 25/1 One Lucky Dane 25/1 Itsaknockout 25/1 Ocean Knight 33/1 Far Right 33/1 Danzig Moon 33/1 Tencendur 33/1 Imperia 40/1 Mr Z 50/1

Michael Dempsey will be providing full analysis of the Kentucky Oaks and Derby Day cards at