How to Bet the Oaks/Turf Classic/Derby Pick 3

Profile Picture: J. Keeler Johnson

May 3rd, 2019

There are a handful of interesting multi-day bets on the agenda at Churchill Downs, each one pairing races on Kentucky Oaks Day with races on Kentucky Derby Day.

Yesterday I shared my wagering strategy for the popular Oaks/Derby Double, but I encourage you to check out the similar Pick 3 that sandwiches the Oaks and Derby around the $1 million Old Forester Turf Classic (G1). If you like just one or two horses in the Turf Classic, playing the Oaks/Turf Classic/Derby Pick 3 in place of the Oaks/Derby Double can be a good way to boost the potential payoff without significantly increasing the cost of your tickets.

I’m mentioning this because I’m confident #12 Bricks and Mortar will come out on top in the Turf Classic, as I outlined in my preview of the race. Unlike some handicappers, I was impressed by Bricks and Mortar’s late-running victory in the Muniz Memorial Handicap (G2) at Fair Grounds, since he was conceding the runner-up nine pounds and overcame an unfavorable pace setup to prevail.

Since I’m convinced Bricks and Mortar will get the job done Saturday, I can play the Oaks/Turf Classic/Derby Pick 3 without spending any more money than I would on the Oaks/Derby Double. The risk is greater, because I’ve added a third race to the sequence and will be relying on Bricks and Mortar to beat a large field, but the reward for a winning ticket will likewise be greater.

As in my double bet, I’ll try to beat Bellafina in the Oaks with #1 Out for a Spin, #3 Lady Apple, #5 Flor de La Mar, #7 Jaywalk, #12 Street Band, and #14 Restless Rider. In the Derby, I’ll favor my top two choices #7 Maximum Security and #16 Game Winner,while adding a small ticket with #3 By My Standards, a live longshot who could potentially ride the rail to victory.

$3 Pick 3: 5,7,14 with 12 with 7,16 ($18) $2 Pick 3: 1,3,12 with 12 with 7,16 ($12) $1 Pick 3: 1,3,5,7,12,14 with 12 with 3 ($6)

Good luck!