It’s that time of the year! The greatest horse racing event in the world takes place at Churchill Downs this Saturday and the More Sports Now crew is on it. We mixed up a batch of mint juleps and ponied up our less than expert staff picks for this years derby where a Jersey horse is the sentimental favorite.
2017 Kentucky Derby Details
Where: Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky
Post Time: Saturday, May 6, at 6:34 p.m. ET
Matt Loughlin – Irish War Cry
He is racing from Post 17 from which no Derby winner has ever started. But he’s currently at 6-1 which makes for a good price. And he is the Wood Memorial winner. Plus he has local connections.
The horse was foaled at Overbrook Farm in Colts Neck. The last Jersey-bred horse to race in the Derby was Dance Floor which finished third in 1992. No Jersey-bred has won the Derby since Cavalcade in 1934. His owner is Isobelle de Tomaso, the daughter of Amory Haskell, the founder of Monmouth Park, so there is horse racing history everywhere you turn.
Plus that name! If the Cubs can do it, if Cleveland can celebrate a championship, then it’s time for New Jersey to win the Run for the Roses.
Irish War Cry brings it home.
Rich Bauer – Irish War Cry
Steve Tichenor – Tapwrit
Matt and Rich are on to something. Not only does the Jersey horse have some nice odds at 6-1 but he’s known to be a good performer on a wet track. As I write this, the track at Churchill Downs is a muddy mess. With a chance of showers at 60% at race time, there is very little chance the track will dry out. In fact it could be worse.
I’ll put the love for my state aside and take a long shot. Tapwrit’s odds have been all over the place. I’ve seen them from 38-1 to 20-1 but it looks like this horse is trending up. Tapwrit is ranked first in the field for this race’s distance of a mile and a quarter and he has already won in wet conditions. For that one two punch I say Tapwrit nips Matt and Rich’s feel good pick. Sorry guys, no luck for the Irish this time.
John McAleavey – Always Dreaming
This colt is ready to bolt! When I read that a horse is a “bundle of energy” and “hard to handle” leading up to a big race, then sign me up. Plus, I am still “Always Dreaming” that More Sports Now will win the Triple Crown some day! At 4-1 odds, this time I’ll ride along with John Velazquez on the favorite.