2021 Kentucky Derby Horse Racing Expert Analysis Update

2021 Kentucky Derby Horse Racing Expert Analysis Update

Written by on January 8, 2021

When it comes to the Kentucky Derby, no trainer in history touches the great Bob Baffert. Check out information on how Kentucky Bob, again, has the best hand heading into the Triple Crown. Also check out top plays and Horse Racing Odds from Kentucky Derby for Saturday, May 1. You can also visit our Online Racebook to place your bets on active racetracks.

2021 Kentucky Derby Update: Baffert Unleashes Life is Good and Medina Spirit

  • When: Saturday, May 1, 2021
  • Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, KY

2021 Kentucky Derby Top 20

  • Essential Quality
  • Keepmeinmind
  • Jackie’s Warrior
  • Spielberg
  • Get Her Number
  • Sittin On Go
  • Brooklyn Strong
  • Capo Kane
  • Life is Good
  • Hot Rod Charlie
  • Midnight Bourbon
  • Cowan
  • Rombauer
  • Reinvestment Risk
  • Super Stock
  • Ten for Ten
  • The Great One
  • Smiley Sobotka
  • Eagle Orb
  • Medina Spirit

Life is Good and Medina Spirit finish 1-2 in the Sham Stakes

In last week’s Derby article, we talked about how if Life is Good won the Sham Stakes, all of us should send him to the top of our Derby Rankings. The MyBookie oddsmakers must have read the article because not only did Life is Good show up in the Kentucky Derby Futures, but the powers that be made the Baffert trainee the favorite.

It makes sense. Based on his breeding, Life is Good should get better the longer he runs. He’s also got natural cruising speed like stablemate Authentic. So, yes, he Life is Good deserves the top spot.

But the second-place finisher, Medina Spirit, also deserves a look. He ran great when getting up for the place. He’s a cheaper equine than the Sham winner, sired by Protonico and from a Brilliant Speed mare. Baffert, though, has proven in the past that he could get 3-year-olds to run beyond their breeding. 

Baffert purchased Real Quiet, the 1998 Derby winner, for $17,000. If Bob believes in Medina Spirit, we better as well. 

Capo Kane dominates the Jerome

Although Life is Good rocked it, we shouldn’t disregard Capo Kane, the Jerome winner. Trained by Harold Wyner, the son of Street Sense pulled away like a monster in the stretch. If Kane improves at all, we must consider the Wyner trained runner a serious contender for the roses.

Street Sense won the 2007 Kentucky Derby. Not only that, but the Jerome winner calls Hard Spun, the second-place finisher in the 2007 Derby, his grandfather. Visually, Capo Kane looked every bit as talented as Life is Good. We rank him below the Baffert runner for now, just because the Jerome is a one-turn mile, but Kane is definitely one to keep on the radar.  

Life is Good and Essential Quality favorites on MyBookie

Both favorites on MyBookie, Life is Good at +500 and Essential Quality at +850, offer underlay odds. Right now, we shouldn’t put money on a horse to win the Derby at odds less than +1500.

It’s not that Life is Good and Essential Quality can’t win the Derby or shouldn’t be the favorites. It’s that it takes an incredible amount of luck, as well as having the best horse, to win on the First Saturday in May. 

Thoroughbreds are fragile animals. We can’t tell you how many times the winter book favorite ended up missing the race due to an injury. So, for now, hold off on backing horses at short prices to win the Kentucky Derby. Wait until Life is Good and Essential Quality come out of their next preps, probably in late March or early April, before putting money on either runner.