Kentucky Derby Week: Thank Goodness

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Get those Mint Juleps ready my friends, one of the biggest sporting events of the year is upon us, and yours truly has gathered all his couch change together with the dream of scoring a big underdog Tri-Fecta.


Kentucky Derby on Twitter: “Post Positions for the 147th #KyDerby / Twitter”

Post Positions for the 147th #KyDerby


Let’s break down a few favorites and dogs, and see if we can’t catch lightning in a bottle. First, Known Agenda (6-1) is led by the now famous trainer Todd Pletcher, which in years past would be enough at least for a Win-Place-Show. But…let’s look at the speed ratings.


Known Agenda (6-1), while a Top 3 finisher, runs a little slow out of the gate. Will having the rail help the horse and jockey? Well, time will tell. Meanwhile, Rock Your World (5-1) is the fastest out of the gate and finishes a respectable 81 speed at the close. The other Top 3 favorite, Essential Quality (2-1) seems to be steady Eddie, middle-to-top of the pack in both early and late pace.

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When comparing horses on the racing sheet, or the Past Performance with full comments courtesy of DRF, Keepmeinmind (50-1) has actually been faster than 2/3 of the field in its last 5 races (April through October 2020). Another bettors delight horse, Midnight Bourbon (20-1), has shown blistering speed ratings in its last 5 races but that stretches back to 2019. Meanwhile, Essential Quality (2-1) posted its slowest race in two years, a speed rating of 69 (compared to 83 and 80 for Keepmeinmind and Bourbon, respectively) this past September.

One thing to also consider, Keepmeinmind (50-1) is currently the fastest finishing horse in the field, according to speed ratings. Rock Your World (5-1) had 3 races between April ’20 and January ’20, posting speeds of 100, 82, and 82.

Another stat that jumps out is Soup And Sandwich (30-1), a strong starter and upper-tier finisher according to ratings, however, it has only raced 3 times in the past year, including a roughly 4 month layoff (last race in January). Perhaps the horse may not be in competitive shape?


Here is the most recent PP for the race:


My Picks (yes I will make these on Saturday with real money):

Win-Place-Show: Rock Your World, Soup And Sandwich, Essential Quality, Midnight Bourbon, Keepmeinmind, Known Agenda

Tri-Fecta: Straight (Essential Quality-Rock Your World-Soup And Sandwich) Box (Essential Quality-Rock Your World-Soup And Sandwich-Known Agenda-Midnight Bourbon) Key (Key-Essential Quality Box-Rock Your World-Soup And Sandwich-Known Agenda-Midnight Bourbon-Medina Spirit)

“Let’s Hit it Big” Tri-Fecta: Box (Soup And Sandwich-Highly Motivated-Rock Your World-Midnight Bourbon-Keepmeinmind)



~Michael Patrick Day, Writer, 12oz Sports


Photo Credits & References:

DRF (2021). Churchill Downs Sat May 1. Retrieved here:

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