2024 Kentucky Derby Picks
Horse Racing

2024 Kentucky Derby Picks: Sierra Leone Is The Best Bet

It’s the 150th running of the most famous horse race in the world, so let's lock in some 2024 Kentucky Derby picks. 

For this first leg of the Triple Crown, I've got my best bet, a sleeper pick, and one long-shot selection I'll be making solely based off vibes. Let's pick a fast pony for the 2024 Kentucky Derby:

Betting Odds To Win The Kentucky Derby
Sierra Leone+300
Catching Freedom+850
Just A Touch+1000
Forever Young+700
Mystik Dan+2500
Just Steel+2500
Honor Marie+1800
Strong Hold+1800
Mystik Dan+2500

Odds as of May 4th, 2024

Kentucky Derby Best Bet: Sierra Leone (+300)

Sierra Leone and Fierceness have been going back and forth for the top spot in these 2024 Kentucky Derby odds over the last few weeks, but I think Sierra Leone is the most likely to cross the finish line first.

Sierra Leone has a tough draw, starting in post two, but I don't think the starting position should matter much for this horse. Sierra Leone usually starts at the back of the pack, as far as I can tell, and wins races at the end. It may take a while to sweat out this bet but look for Sierra Leone to take it at the end.

Kentucky Derby Sleeper Pick: Just A Touch (+1000)

Just A Touch is one of trainer Brad Cox's three horses in this year's Kentucky Derby and I like JAT as a value pick. For starters, the horse was born in Kentucky, so I like the home-field advantage. 

But, there are some more 'real' reasons I'm backing this sleeper pick, too. For starters, JAT comes from the line of Justify, who won the 2018 Triple Crown, so that's a good pedigree. Also, the horse is on a hot streak, coming first or second in the last three races. In Just a Touch's most recent race, the horse came a narrow second at the Blue Grass Stakes to my best bet for this year's Derby, Sierra Leone. We know JAT can hang with the top horses, and at these odds, I'll take a value swing on Just A Touch to have a big day.

If you're looking for more value for this year's race, check out my complete Kentucky Derby Sleeper Picks.

Kentucky Derby Vibes Pick: Catalytic (+6000)

As a writer, new words always catch my eye. And, I'll admit, I had to look up what "catalytic" meant. Per the good old dictionary, it's "relating to or involving the action of a catalyst." So, that's a fun name, which is already worth a sprinkle.

But, I also like this horse because of the post position. Catalytic has the pleasure of starting in the No. 5 spot, which has the most winners in Kentucky Derby history. In Derby history, 10 winners have come from the No. 5 post position, which is a good sign for my vibes pick.

When is the Kentucky Derby?

The 2024 Kentucky Derby meet will occur on the afternoon of Saturday, May 4th. Big Race Post time is 6:57 p.m. ET so expect the race to end around 7 p.m. ET.

It'll happen pretty quickly, so be sure to lock in before 7. As the famous saying goes, it's "the most exciting two minutes in sports.”

Last 10 Kentucky Derby Winners

Last 10 Kentucky Derby Winners
2022Rich Strike+8000
2019Country House+3000
2017Always Dreaming+450
2015American Pharoah+300
2014California Chrome+250

Look at that value in the last few years when it comes to betting on the Kentucky Derby winner! The average odds to win for the last four winners is around +3200. This is why the Derby so popular, not only is there is a lot of money to be made but that also means there are plenty of upsets to watch in the main race.

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