05/02/2013 12:41PM

Kentucky Derby: Even 50-1 shots on morning line have some hope

Barbara D. Livingston
Black Onyx is among six horses listed at 50-1 on the track's morning line for the Kentucky Derby.

Out of respect to the connections, if nothing else, the highest that Churchill linemaker Mike Battaglia will list a horse on his Derby line is 50-1. There are six such horses in this renewal: Black Onyx, Golden Soul, Giant Finish, Falling Sky, Frac Daddy, and the lone also-eligible, Fear the Kitten.

[2013 KENTUCKY DERBY: Get PPs, contender profiles, live updates]

Under other circumstances, 50-1 often implies a hapless no-hoper whose odds might well soar above the 99-1 mark, but, for whatever reasons, that sure hasn’t been the case with the Derby in recent years.

In fact, perhaps the surest bet regarding the 139th Derby is that no odds will approach the Derby record for highest odds held by A Dragon Killer, who finished seventh of 14 at a whopping 294-1 in 1958.

The last time Derby starters were 99-1 on the odds board was 2001, when Startac ran 10th at 102-1 and Arctic Boy was 12th at 102-1.
Two of the last eight Derby winners were pegged at 50-1 on the program and roared home at precisely those odds: Giacomo (2005) and Mine That Bird (2009).

Wide variety of wagering options

A slew of wagering options will be available on the 13-race Derby card, including:

◗ A $1 million pool guarantee in the $2 pick six (races 6-11), ending on the Derby. The bet carries over if no perfect tickets are sold (the next live racing day at Churchill is May 9).

◗ A 50-cent pick five wager (races 7-11) that also ends with the Derby.

◗ Four 50-cent pick fours (races 2-5, 4-7, 8-11, and 10-13).

◗ A Super High Five ($1 minimum) on the Derby (carries over if no perfect tickets).

Because of logistical constraints, the widely popular 10-cent superfecta is not available, with the minimum being $1. Many wagers maintain a 50-cent minimum, including trifectas and rolling pick threes.

Martina McBride will sing national anthem

Country music superstar Martina McBride will sing the national anthem before the Derby. The performance is scheduled for shortly after 5 p.m. Eastern and will be part of the NBC broadcast. It will be at least the second rendition of the anthem here Saturday, following the 113th Army Band from nearby Fort Knox.

McBride will be the fifth major entertainer to sing the anthem before the Derby since Churchill began such a tradition in 2009 with LeAnn Rimes. Others that followed were Rascal Flatts (2010), Jordan Sparks (2011), and Mary J. Blige (2012).

scott More than 1 year ago
What are the logistical constraints that eliminate the 10 cent super for the derby?
Jay More than 1 year ago
If the Derby main track turns up wet come Saturday, the biggest bomb would appear to be Oxbow. Trying to steal the roses away from Orb or Revolutionary.
Nick More than 1 year ago
Go watch Golden Souls' last 3 races...Like I said the other night, he will be closing late.
george cernansky More than 1 year ago
so will about 10 other horses.
MGropenSDREADER More than 1 year ago
Be a hell of lot better to have a REAL country singer sing an equine-related tune like "Sugarfoot Rag" than another pop-schlock Anthem rendition!
Lise McLain More than 1 year ago
Hi! I may take a chance (betting) on one of these 50-1 derby contenders but I am not sure which one as yet. Robby Albarado is a great jockey so maybe I can bet on the jockey rather than the horse since very few people, if any, believes that the horse can win. Maybe the jockey has some trick up his sleeve. I don't like Black Onyx's post position number 1. Not a great place to be. Frac Daddy is too far out at number 18, and that is not a good place to be either. Oh well! Which one? Which one? Don't know as yet and maybe none of them. Thank you! Lise from Maine
curt More than 1 year ago
When in doubt, Lisa from Maine, Use 1 4 7 ! Boo Ya! You have Rosie Napravik and Jose Espinozaand people like "Onyx" on the (1) Boom! There it is!
Sam More than 1 year ago
Rosie's on #6
curt More than 1 year ago
Sorry.......Lise :-)
Sam More than 1 year ago
I'm assuming you're female. If so, bet on the female. She' also happen's to be a great jockette
Craig More than 1 year ago
I'm using Big Boy Black Onyx underneath.
anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thankfully the public knows better. It's great you have this article, instead of yet another one about how only Orb can win this race. And how only certain other horses, with the right backstories, can finish in the money. Way too much rigid conjecturing, when anyone who watches races knows you can't predict them and therefore you can't rule out a good underperformer who, somehow, gets a good trip while the darlings have poor trips. How many races are broken races? I'll bet almost 40%.
Sam More than 1 year ago
Sam Shelby More than 1 year ago
No guarantees here. But Golden Soul has a shot at hitting the board. No shot at beating Orb. But thats OK. Nobody else will either.
zerosumzen More than 1 year ago
They are already at 100-1. These ML odds add up to 137.5%. Changing the 50-1's to 100-1 doesn't change much.
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
POst #1 does suck and worse if its wet
Sir More than 1 year ago
Black Onyx has won in all 3 surfaces. He has a long stride with a high leg action, like a turfer. He would not have to adjust anything if the surface comes up like it did in 2009.