Kentucky Derby Quesitons and Answers: second choices, the bubble, and the best region

Profile Picture: Ed DeRosa

April 17th, 2016

We anticipated having some answers following the conclusion of the Kentucky Derby Championship Series, but as always there are some questions as well.

Before Saturday’s races we asked:

After Saturday’s races, I have answers to all of those questions, though sometimes the answer is in the form of more questions!

1.       Who will be the second choice in the Kentucky Derby?

Before today, I’d have made Cupid the favorite to be second favorite expecting a win in the Arkansas Derby, but now I have to think it’s Santa Anita Derby winner Exaggerator. Other options include TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby winner Gun Runner or Blue Grass Stakes winner Brody’s Cause.

2.       Who’s on the Kentucky Derby bubble points wise?

We have a firm answer to this, as right now maiden Trojan Nation is the “last horse in” with the 40 points he earned in the Wood Memorial Stakes. The likelihood of all 20 horses currently in the Derby actually entering is extremely small, however, so Mo Tom is in good shape as is Fellowship. Adventist, Laoban, and Dazzling Gem all need help, but shouldn’t be discouraged.

Trojan Nation’s spot in 20th is sure to invite criticism of a maiden keeping out horses with more impressive blacktype than his, but the anomaly this year is that 40 points is the bubble more than a maiden is on it. Most years that 40 points would be safely in, and it wouldn’t look so bad (to some) that a maiden was keeping others out.

3.       Which region has the best Kentucky Derby contenders?

The toteboard will answer this question with California, as the favorite Nyquist is based there (or was before shipping to Kentucky from his Florida Derby win), and the Santa Anita Derby exacta of Exaggerator and Mor Spirit will be among the top six choices as well, but the Kentucky Derby results might answer differently as both Louisiana and Arkansas horses have looked good, albeit mostly running against each other.

4.       Who’s going to get an all-expenses paid VIP trip to Churchill Downs to bet $25,000 to win on the Kentucky Derby?

We actually don’t know the answer to this quite yet. It will be interesting to see if the winner had both Oscar Nominated AND Creator, but rest assured s/he had at least one of those. Also worth pointing out, that his/her $25,000 win bet on the Kentucky Derby could have a small say in the answer to question #1!