Field favored at 5-1, McCraken top individual in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3
Upon the conclusion of Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager (KDFW) Sunday evening, the mutuel field of “All Other” three-year-olds proved most popular at 5-1 (with $33,029.72 in the gross win pool). That would yield a $12.40 payout for a $2 wager, if none of the 23 named interests turns out to be the Kentucky Derby (G1) winner. The 5-1 price is considerably higher than in the first two pools, where the "All Others" option closed at 6-5 in Pool 1 (ended November 27) and 5-2 in Pool 2 (ended January 29).
Undefeated McCraken was preferred among the individual interests in Pool 3, bet down from an 8-1 morning line to 6-1. Hero of last fall’s Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) and most recently the Sam F. Davis (G3) in his track record-setting reappearance at Tampa Bay Downs, the Ian Wilkes trainee is on course for the March 11 Tampa Bay Derby (G2).
Hot on his heels was the 7-1 Irish War Cry, who attracted quite a lot of support off a 12-1 morning line. Graham Motion’s Curlin colt, who extended his record to three-for-three in the Holy Bull (G2), seeks to stay perfect in Saturday’s Fountain of Youth (G2) back at Gulfstream Park.
Mastery, opening at 10-1 and closing at 8-1, was the only other individual in single digits. Likewise unbeaten so far for Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, the son of Candy Ride capped 2016 with a romp in the Los Alamitos Futurity (G1). He’s expected to return in the March 11 San Felipe (G2) at Santa Anita.
Unanimous champion two-year-old colt Classic Empire continues to have loyalists, ranking as the fourth individual pick at 11-1. Yet concerns about a hoof abscess coming off his third in the Holy Bull likely caused his drift from an 8-1 morning line. Before his troubles, Classic Empire had been the top individual in the first two pools (6-1 in Pool 1 and 5-1 in Pool 2).
Rounding out the top five individuals was a newcomer to the Future Wager, the Todd Pletcher-trained One Liner, who gained fans fast in the wake of his Southwest (G3) victory last Monday. Another undefeated from three starts, he shortened from a 15-1 morning line to 12-1 at the closing bell.
According to Churchill Downs’ Darren Rogers, wagering on KDFW Pool 3 totaled $373,354, an increase of 13.8 percent from the $328,109 bet on the corresponding pool last year.
Click here for the $2 exacta probables for Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3.
The fourth and final KDFW Pool is scheduled for March 31-April 2, the weekend coinciding with the April 1 Florida Derby (G1) and Louisiana Derby (G2).