02/24/2014 5:16PM

Kentucky Derby Future Wager: Field still favored at 6-1

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Barbara D. Livingston
Cairo Prince, the winner of the Grade 2 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park last month, is at 8-1 in Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Seven new names are in the 23-horse lineup for Pool 3 of the 2014 Kentucky Derby Future Wager, which opens Thursday at noon Eastern for a three-day run.

Churchill Downs linemaker Mike Battaglia has listed the mutuel field, the 24th or “all others” option, as a lukewarm 6-1 morning-line favorite for Pool 3, followed by Cairo Prince (8-1), Top Billing (8-1), Honor Code (10-1), and Shared Belief (12-1).

The new horses in the pool are Albano, Bayern, Constitution, General a Rod, Kobe’s Back, Tamarando, and Wildcat Red.

Those horses displace the following from Pool 2, which was held just three weeks ago (Feb. 6-8): Bobby’s Kitten, Commissioner, Havana, Matterhorn, Midnight Hawk, Rise Up, and Tonalist.

Pool 3 coincides with the only Kentucky Oaks pool of the season. The field and Untapable are 6-1 morning-line co-favorites for the Oaks, followed by Onlyforyou (8-1), Unbridled Forever (8-1), and Fashion Plate (10-1).

Both pools will close Saturday at post time for the Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct, scheduled for 4:17 p.m. Eastern. The Gotham is the only prep race with Derby points (50 to the winner) this weekend.

Handle has slumped noticeably thus far for the Derby futures, with Pool 2 having attracted just $380,249, a 39 percent drop from the corresponding pool in 2013 and the second-lowest for a pool offered during the same time frame. Churchill officials attributed the plunge to several factors, most notably that the New York Racing Association didn’t accept the future wager during Pool 2 while engaged in a dispute with Churchill Downs over simulcast fees.

Churchill spokesman John Asher said Monday that NYRA will offer wagers into Pool 3.

The field closed as the 3-2 favorite in Pool 2.

[ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY: Prep races, point standings, replays]

This is the first year Churchill has had four pools. Last fall, Churchill moved Pool 1 back to November for the first time, with the field closing as the 4-5 favorite. Pool 1 handle was $273,174, the fifth-lowest total since futures were first offered in 1999.

Historically, the futures pool held at this time of year (formerly Pool 2 and now Pool 3) has attracted lighter handle than those directly preceding and following it. Handle on the comparable 2013 pool was $407,038. The record for a comparable pool is $511,655, set in 2005.

Only five horses have been separately listed in all three pools toward the 2014 Derby: Cairo Prince, Honor Code, Noble Moon, Shared Belief, and Strong Mandate.

Pool 4 will be held March 27-29.

Handle on the Oaks futures typically is less one-fourth of the corresponding Derby pool, although last year a record Oaks handle of $126,038 exceeded that threshold.

Streaming, eliminated from Oaks consideration Monday due to a knee injury, had been part of the original 23-horse lineup before being replaced by Shanon Nicole.

As with any parimutuel wager, odds are not locked in until the pool closes. There are no refunds.

Real-time odds and exacta will-pays are available on selected monitors at tracks and wagering outlets where futures are offered, as well as on kentuckyderby.com.

Minimum wagers are $2 to win and $2 for exactas, although $1 boxes or part-wheels may be used to reach that $2 exacta minimum.

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.

Asher heads the four-person committee that chooses the lineups. The committee also includes Brad Free of Daily Racing Form, Ed DeRosa of Brisnet, and freelance racing writer Gary West.

The Oaks and Derby will be run May 2 and 3.

DRF will include the past performances of the 23 Derby horses in all print editions Thursday through Saturday.

Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3

1. Albano*, 30-1
2. Bayern*, 15-1
3. Cairo Prince, 8-1
4. California Chrome, 30-1
5. Candy Boy, 20-1
6. Conquest Titan, 30-1
7. Constitution*, 20-1
8. General a Rod*, 20-1
9. Honor Code, 10-1
10. Indianapolis, 20-1
11. Intense Holiday, 15-1
12. Kobe’s Back*, 20-1
13. Kristo 30-1,
14. Noble Moon, 30-1
15. Samraat, 30-1
16. Shared Belief, 12-1
17. Strong Mandate, 20-1
18. Tamarando*, 30-1
19. Tapiture, 15-1
20. Top Billing, 8-1
21. Uncle Sigh, 50-1
22. Vicar’s in Trouble, 30-1
23. Wildcat Red*, 20-1
24. All Other 3-year-olds, 6-1

* - new wagering interest from KDFW Pool 2

Kentucky Oaks Future Wager odds

1. Aragorn Ami, 50-1
2. Arethusa, 20-1
3. Awesome Baby, 30-1
4. Bird Maker, 30-1
5. Cast in Silver, 50-1
6. Dame Dorothy, 12-1
7. Fashion Plate, 10-1
8. Fiftyshadesofgold, 20-1
9. Got Lucky, 30-1
10. House Rules, 20-1
11. Joint Return, 50-1
12. Onlyforyou, 8-1
13. Our Amazing Rose, 30-1
14. Please Explain, 30-1
15. Ria Antonia, 20-1
16. Rosalind, 20-1
17. Shanon Nicole, 50-1
18. She’s A Tiger, 15-1
19. Stopchargingmaria, 20-1
20. Sweet Reason, 20-1
21. Sweet Whiskey, 20-1
22. Unbridled Forever, 8-1
23. Untapable, 6-1
24. Mutuel field (all others), 6-1