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LOUISVILLE, KY – Fast-rising stars McKinzie, Audible, and Mask join reigning 2-year-old champion Good Magic and the accomplished Bolt d’Oro atop the roster of individual betting interests in this week’s second pool of Churchill Downs’ 2018 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”), but the ever-popular Mutuel Field, or “All Others,” remains the likely wagering favorite for the pool that kicks off its three-day run on Friday, February 9.
The “All Others” wager has been the favorite in the first pool of the new year since the Kentucky Derby Future Wager was introduced in 1999, and Churchill Downs oddsmaker Mike Battaglia has installed “All Others” as the 7-2 choice in his morning line for the upcoming pool. Wagering in KDFW Pool 2 will open at noon (all times EST) on Friday at racetracks and satellite wagering centers across North America, as well as online at TwinSpires.com and other wagering platforms. Wagering will conclude on Sunday, February 11, at 6 p.m.
The Kentucky Derby Future Wager enables fans to bet on possible contenders for the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve at Churchill Downs well in advance of the May 5th running of America’s greatest race. Odds on horses in the four KDFW pools could be more attractive than those available on the day of the race. Each wagering pool features 24 vetting interests that consist of 23 individual horses and the “All Others” interest, which includes all 3-year-old thoroughbreds other than the pool’s individual horses.
The wager is a $2 minimum bet and is a win wager only. Pari-mutuel payouts on winning tickets on Kentucky Derby Day will be determined by the final odds in each respective pool. Each pool also includes an exacta wager that requires bettors to correctly choose the top two Derby finishers in the exact order of finish. The exacta is a $2 minimum bet, while exacta boxes are available in $1 increments.
The second Kentucky Derby Futures Pool of 2018 is topped by Mike Pegram, Karl Watson and Paul Weitman’s unbeaten McKinzie, one of three Pool 2 hopes under the care of Hall of Famer and four-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert. The son of 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense is the 8-1 individual choice after three wins that include a triumph via disqualification in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity and Santa Anita’s Grade 3 Sham Stakes. Baffert also trains Zayat Stables’ Solomini, disqualified from first to third in McKinzie’s win at Los Alamitos, and Phoenix Thoroughbreds III’s Mourinho, a son of 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver who won Oaklawn Park’s $150,000 Smarty Jones Stakes in his only start of 2018.
Just behind McKinzie are two colts at at 10-1. One is e Five Racing Thoroughbreds and Stonestreet Stables’ Good Magic, the Eclipse Award champion 2-year-old of 2017 following his victory in the $2 million Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Del Mar for trainer Chad Brown. The other is Ruis Racing’s Bolt d’Oro, third as the beaten favorite in the Breeders’ Cup event and a winner in three of four career starts for trainer Mick Ruis. The Juvenile was the only win in three 2017 races for Good Magic, while Bolt d’Oro scored emphatic wins in the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity and Santa Anita’s Grade 1 FrontRunner prior to his loss to Brown’s star.
A pair of fast-rising stars are next at 12-1 in WinStar Farm, China Horse Club International, and SF Racing’s Audible, an impressive 5 1/2-length winner of last week’s Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park for trainer Todd Pletcher, and the Brown-trained Mask, Lane’s End Racing’s unbeaten winner of Gulfstream’s $100,000 Mucho Macho Man Stakes. Pletcher, who earned his second Kentucky Derby victory last year with Always Dreaming, also trains Robert V. LaPenta, Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, and Twin Creeks Racing Stables’ Montauk, an 11 1/4-length winner of his lone career start in October at Saratoga.
Pool 2 notables with international connections include the Grade 3 Withers Stakes and the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes winner Avery Island and the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club winner Enticed, both owned by Dubai-based Godolphin Racing and trained by Kiaran McLaughlin. Also representing the overseas horses is Derrick Smith, Mrs. John Magnier, and Michael Tabor’s Mendelssohn, winner of the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf for Ireland-based training star Aidan O’Brien.
Winchell Thoroughbeeds and Willis Horton Racing’s Copper Bullet, winner of the Grade 2 Saratoga Special, is the most accomplished member of the four KDFW Pool 2 betting interests trained by Steve Asmussen. The Asmussen foursome also includes Combatant, the Winchell and Horton-owned runner-up in the Smarty Jones and Remington Park’s $400,000 Springboard Mile; Three Chimneys Farm’s Grade 3 LeComte Stakes runner-up Principe Guilherme; and L and N Racing’s unbeaten Retirement Fund.
Five trainers in KDFW Pool 2 have multiple horses. In addition to Baffert, Brown, Pletcher, and McLaughlin, Churchill Downs-based trainer Dale Romans has Albaugh Family Stables’ Free Drop Billy, winner of Keeneland’s Grade 1 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity and runner-up in the Holy Bull, and Frank L. Jones Jr.’s Tiz Mischief, runner-up in the Kentucky Jockey Club and third in the Holy Bull.
Along with Baffert and Pletcher, Kentucky Derby-winning trainers with horses in Pool 2 include Hall of Famer and four-time winner D. Wayne Lukas and Graham Motion. Lukas is represented by the Grade 1 Hopeful winner Sporting Chance and Motion by Untamed Domain. The latter is a son of Animal Kingdom, who won the 2011 Kentucky Derby for Motion.
The list of Pool 2 betting interests features seven horses that were not a part of November’s opening pool: Audible, the Grade 2 Remsen Stakes winner Catholic Boy, Combatant, the LeComte winner Instilled Regard, Mourinho, Retirement Fund, and the Grade 3 Swale Stakes winner Strike Power.
The entire roster of wagering interests in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2:
There are no scratches or refunds in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager. Should Churchill Downs officials determine during the three-day run of Pool 2 that a wagering interest has suffered an injury or other circumstance that would prevent that horse from competing in the Kentucky Derby, then wagering on that interest will be immediately suspended.
Real-time odds and other information on the Kentucky Derby Future Wager, including free past performance information from Brisnet, is available at the official Kentucky Derby event web site: www.kentuckyderby.com.
The opening Kentucky Derby Future Wager pool of 2018 was conducted November 23-26. Pool 3 is set for March 9-11, and the year’s fourth and final pool will run from April 6-8. The lone Kentucky Oaks Future Wager pool will coincide with KDFW Pool 3 during its March 9-11 run.
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