The buzz and excitement that always surrounds the Kentucky Derby starts weeks before the actual running of the race, but the fervor really starts to ramp up when the post-position draw is made. It’s tough to make any sort of decent selection without knowing where each horse is going to start from.
This is especially true for the horses who get the inside post slots, as those have been an almost instant guarantee that they are not going to win the race. The draw for those positions will be made on Wednesday, at which time we will all have a better idea of which horses should be considered the favorite. While we wait, let’s take a look at some of the dark horse selections that might be worth adding to your betting tickets, keeping in mind that these picks could change after the post draw has been made.
Analyzing The Kentucky Derby 2017 Bold Picks, Dark Horses & Non-Favorites
Horses from the west coast have a history of doing well in the Kentucky Derby, and this horse should be no different. Gormley first big win came at the FrontRunner Stakes, where he went wire to wire for an impressive victory. He did not show well at the Breeders Cup, but that can be attributed to the fact that he stumbled out of the gate in that one. As a 3-year old, he has big wins at the Sham Stakes and the Santa Anita Derby, and his pedigree suggests that he should have no problem with the 1 ¼ mile trip at Churchill.
This horse started his racing life at the Fair Grounds in Louisiana, where he quickly got in the habit of winning. He has big wins at the Risen Star Stakes and the Louisiana Derby, both Grade II races, under his belt, and he has made a habit of winning against quality fields. His best efforts have come at a mile, so there is some concern that the extra distance in the Kentucky Derby may be an issue. Still one to watch, though.
Thunder Snow (16/1)
There is still some question as to whether this Irish-bred horse will race in the Derby, as he is also entered into an event in England on the same day. The winner of the UAE Derby already has over $1.5 million in earnings, but it can be argued that his best efforts have come on dirt tracks, which suggests he may be making the trip to Churchill Downs. Probably the biggest risk in this group we are discussing here, but worth a look, nonetheless.
This horse made a habit of getting in the money in big races, but never quite doing enough to get across the finish line with the lead. That all changed at the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, where he stunned a field of very talented horses to take the wire and book his ticket to the Kentucky Derby. This race could well play to his strength, as he likes to sit just off the pace and duel coming down the stretch. This is a gutsy horse that could pass many others by coming home.