11/30/2013 6:05PM

Kentucky Derby Future Wager: Field closes at 4-5; Honor Code second choice at 10-1

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Barbara D. Livingston
Honor Code (right), winner of the Remsen, closed at 10-1 in Pool 1 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager. Cairo Prince, the Remsen runner-up, closed at 26-1.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – With still more than five months until the 140th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, it came as no surprise whatsoever Saturday when the mutuel field closed as an odds-on favorite in Pool 1 of the Derby Future Wager.

The field, the 24th or “all others” option, closed at 4-5, with Remsen Stakes winner Honor Code next at 10-1 among the 23 separately listed entrants. Then came New Year’s Day (15-1), Tap It Rich (25-1), Havana (26-1), Cairo Prince (26-1), and Strong Mandate (27-1).

This was the first time Churchill offered a futures pool before February, and not surprisingly, the new placement resulted in the fifth-lowest handle since the inaugural year of 1999. Combined handle for Pool 1, which had a four-day run with a Wednesday opening, was $273,174, with $238,078 bet to win and $35,096 in exactas.

The pool closed at post time (3:51 p.m. Eastern) for the Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct.

The standard for the Derby futures has been three pools, very similar to the schedule that will ensue early next year, with Pool 2 set for Feb. 6-8; Pool 3, Feb. 27-March 1; and Pool 4, March 27-29. All three of those will run from Thursday to Saturday, as opposed to the Friday to Sunday schedule used in prior years. A single Kentucky Oaks futures pool will be offered concurrent to Derby Pool 3.

The only lower handle totals than this first November pool were all three pools in 1999 and Pool 3 in 2003.

Combined handle on Pool 1 last February for the 2013 Derby was $621,493, just shy of the record of $631,304 set with the first pool in 2012.

This is the 16th year for the future wager; exacta wagering was added in 2009. In the case of field horses filling both exacta slots, the next-best finish by a separately listed horse will count toward the winning combination.

Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 1 Final Odds
(No., Horse, Closing odds, $2 win will-pay)
1. Almost Famous, 30-1, $62.80
2. Bobby’s Kitten, 28-1, $58.80
3. Bondholder, 40-1, $82.80
4. Cairo Prince, 26-1, $55.60
5. Cleburne, 62-1, $126
6. Commissioner, 33-1, $69.80
7. Coup de Grace, 48-1, $99.20
8. Financial Mogul, 225-1, $453.40
9. Havana, 26-1, $54.20
10. Honor Code, 10-1, $22.80
11. In Trouble, 53-1, $109.80
12. Kobe’s Back, 84-1, $171.20
13. Mexikoma, 40-1, $82.80
14. Misconnect, 43-1, $88.80
15. New Year’s Day, 15-1, $32.40
16. Noble Moon, 63-1, $129.40
17. Pablo Del Monte, 59-1, $121.60
18. Ride On Curlin, 57-1, $117.40
19. Rise Up, 50-1, $102.80
20. Shared Belief, 32-1, $66.20
21. Strong Mandate, 27-1, $57.60
22. Tamarando, 42-1, $86.20
23. Tap It Rich, 45-1, $52.20
24. Mutuel field (all other 2014 3-year-olds), 4-5, $3.60
Combined handle: $273,174