Derby Post Position Analysis: closers draw inside, primary speed hung out in 20

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May 4th, 2016

Undefeated juvenile champion Nyquist was installed as the 3-1 morning line favorite for Saturday's 142nd Kentucky Derby (G1) at Churchill Downs at the post position draw conducted late Wednesday afternoon.

Nyquist will break from post 13 in a field of 20, perhaps a little farther outside than his connections might have preferred. Although an outside trip is possible from this starting position, it must be remembered the colt endured an extremely wide journey last fall in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) and prevailed.

Danzing Candy, who has long been expected to be the primary pacesetter, arguably drew worst of all in post 20. However, he will be one of the last horses loaded into the starting gate and might not have too much trouble clearing most of the foes to his inside to gain early position.

The dreaded inside posts, 1 and 2, along with posts 3 and 4, were all taken by confirmed closers. The maiden Trojan Nation, runner-up in the Wood Memorial (G1), drew post 1 early in the process. If it wasn't planned already, he'll be forced to take back early where he'll be in company with Suddenbreakingnews, Creator, and Mo Tom, who respectively drew the next three slots.

Breaking from post 5, the winningest post in Derby history, is Gun Runner. In most every respect it's a positive draw as the Louisiana Derby (G2) winner figures to outbreak the four rivals to his inside and secure a stalking trip hugging the rail. A pocket journey similar to the one he enjoyed at Fair Grounds could be in the offing.

Longshot Oscar Nominated and Tampa Bay Derby (G2) winner Destin drew on either side of the unpredictable Japanese invader Lani, and connections will have to hope the quirky UAE Derby (G2) hero does not do anything unexpected.

Those that were probably expected to stalk the pace will have to do so from outside posts. Mohaymen (14), Outwork (15), Mor Spirit (17), and possibly Brody's Cause (19) will all have to show some early foot in order to gain favorable position before entering the first turn.