2018 Kentucky Derby Odds & Picks

Updated 2018 Kentucky Derby Odds & Picks

The post positions and morning line odds for the biggest horse race of the year are out. Who is the favorite? Is there a smarter bet? Is there a long shot that you should know about?

Justify is the early favorite at +360, but another early favorite, Magnum Moon, has my eye. The undefeated Arkansas Derby winner Magnum Moon is trained by Todd Pletcher. That alone makes Magnum Moon a horse to contend with on the First Saturday in May. But, is Magnum Moon a good bet based on his morning line odds?

2018 Kentucky Derby
144th Running of the Roses
Saturday, May 5th, 2018
Post Time: 6:34 PM ET
TV Coverage: 2:30-7:20 PM ET
Watch: NBC
Stream: NBC Sports Live

2018 Kentucky Derby Odds & Picks

  1. Firenze Fire +7500
  2. Free Drop Billy +3500
  3. Promises Fulfilled +5500
  4. Flameaway +4000
  5. Audible +700
  6. Good Magic +900
  7. Justify +360
  8. Lone Sailor +5000
  9. Hofburg +1450
  10. My Boy Jack +2800
  11. Bolt d’Oro +800
  12. Enticed +2500
  13. Bravazo +6000
  14. Mendelssohn +500
  15. Instilled Regard +5000
  16. Magnum Moon +750
  17. Solomini +2500
  18. Vino Rosso +1300
  19. Noble Indy +3000
  20. Combatant +6000

The 2018 Kentucky Derby Betting Favorite:  Magnum Moon +750

There are plenty of reasons to like Magnum Moon to win the Derby on May 5. His trainer, Todd Pletcher, won the 2017 Kentucky Derby with Always Dreaming. Magnum Moon is undefeated. He’s a Grade 1 winner. He’s been working lights out and his sire, Malibu Moon, is one of the best in North America.

On the surface, it sure appears as if Magnum Moon will make his presence felt on Derby Day. Horse races are run on racetracks not on paper, though. Although on the surface it looks like Magnum Moon is a good bet think about this:  no horse has won the Derby after not racing as a 2-year-old since Apollo in 1882.

Is Magnum Moon good enough to beat that over 100-year trend? I don’t think so.

The 2018 Kentucky Derby Smart Bet:  Bolt d’Oro +800

Bolt d’Oro was a massive 3/1 chalk in the Kentucky Derby winter future book. The son of Medaglia d’Oro had no shot of catching Justify in the Santa Anita Derby. Justify got away with an easy lead. He loped along and put away his competition before the half-mile pole.

Nobody should get an easy lead on Saturday. Bolt d’Oro will be in a great position so that when he makes his patented run, he could grab the lead. Once he grabs the lead, he could be impossible to catch.

Bolt d’Oro is still the most talented horse in the 2018 Kentucky Derby. No matter what other horses this year have done, he was the best 2-year-old, he’s been one of the best 3-year-olds. I think Mick Ruis gets him to peak on May 5.   

The Long Shot Kentucky Derby Bet:  Hofburg +1450

Hofburg is from Tapit. He’s owned by Juddmonte Farms, one of the most powerful racing outfits on the planet. He’s trained by Bill Mott, the man that gave us Cigar. Hofburg should have no trouble getting the distance. He’ll also be much tighter in the Kentucky Derby than he was finishing second in the Florida Derby.

I believe he’s got a big shot at +1450.