When post positions were drawn Wednesday for the 138th Kentucky Derby, the list of favorites for the Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs looked very much like a stable list for Gulfstream Park or Palm Meadows.
Fountain of Youth (G2) winner Union Rags, Blue Grass and Palm Beach runner-up Dullahan, Holy Bull (G3) runner-up Hansen, undefeated Palm Meadows resident Gemologist, and Florida Derby winner Take Charge Indy were all among the top choices for Saturday’s 1 ¼ mile event.
Churchill Downs odds maker Mike Battaglia made Arkansas Derby (G1) winner Bodemeister the 4-1 favorite after he drew the No. 6 post. The Bob Baffert-trained colt will be attempting history, trying to become the first horse sine 1882 to win the Derby without racing as a 2-year-old.
Behind Bodemeister in the morning line was a who’s who of Gulfstream’s 3-year-old stars from the recently completed meet. They included:
• Union Rags, the beaten Florida Derby favorite, at 9-2 from the No. 4 post.
• Undefeated Wood Memorial (G1) winner Gemologist at 6-1. The colt, who drew post 15, kicked off his 3-year-old season with a victory at Gulfstream March 16.
• Dullahan, who trained the winter at Gulfstream, is listed at 8-1 after drawing post 5.
• Hansen, who wintered at Gulfstream after his champion juvenile season, at 10-1 from post 14.
• Florida Derby winner Take Charge Indy, who drew post 3, at 15-1
• Palm Meadows resident and Wood runner-up Alpha at 15-1 after drawing post 11.
• Trinniberg, winner of Gulfstream’s Swale (G2), is 50-1 and will break from post. 9.
Other horses entered in Saturday’s Derby who spent their winter at Gulfstream or Palm Meadows include Went the Day Well (20-1), Tampa Bay Derby (G3) winner Prospective (30-1) and Risen Star (G2) winner El Padrino (20-1).
Five of the last six Kentucky Derby winners have wintered at Palm Meadows.
The full list of horses with post positions and odds
1: Daddy Long Legs 30-1
2: Optimizer 50-1
3: Take Charge Indy 15-1
4: Union Rags 9-2
5: Dullahan 8-1
6: Bodemeister 4-1
7: Rousing Sermon 50-1
8: Creative Cause 12-1
9: Trinniberg 50-1
10: Daddy Nose Best 15-1
11: Alpha 15-1
12: Prospective 30-1
13: Went the Day Well 20-1
14: Hansen 10-1
15: Gemologist 6-1
16: El Padrino 20-1
17: Done Talking 50-1
18: Sabercat: 30-1
19: I’ll Have Another 12-1
20: Liaison 50-1
The most comfortable and luxurious place to watch and wager on Saturday’s Derby is Gulfstream Park, host of a free Derby party with drink specials and official Kentucky Derby merchandise.