As winter thaws and spring arrives, the sporting calendar ramps up with all sorts of events. Currently, the focus is on The Masters, the NBA and NHL playoffs, and the early part of the baseball season. Not long from now, we’ll be eyeing the NFL Draft and start of the American Triple Crown races.
The 2023 Kentucky Derby is now just a month away as it’s always run on the first Saturday of May. BetAnySports already has some early odds up on the board, so let’s take a look and see who’s favored and what longshots have a chance to win the Run for the Roses:
Forte, Disarm Among Early Favorites
We’re almost at the end of Kentucky Derby prep races with just a few more key races to go this month. However, it’s Forte who has really impressed to date and is currently favored. The Todd Pletcher-trained three-year-old colt has won the Florida Derby, Fountain of Youth Stakes and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Out of seven races entered, the colt has won six of them.
Another three-year-old colt on the radar is Practical Move (12/1), who will have an opportunity to make some noise this weekend. This Tim Yakteen-trained thoroughbred has won back-to-back races at the San Felipe Stakes and Los Alamitos Futurity last year. This Saturday, he’ll be racing at the Santa Anita Stakes. Another win and will propel him to the top of most power rankings.
Tapit Trice (8/1) is likely to be a second Todd Pletcher entry into the 2023 Run for the Roses. He won the Tampa Bay Derby and has now won three in a row, but some will see some red flags. Tapit Trice is among the favorites but has only won one graded stakes races (Tampa Bay Derby). Is that enough to really put faith into? The horse is capable but bettors would have liked to seen more of a track record.
Can Baffert Earn Redemption with Arabian Knight?
Bob Baffert’s one-year suspension is officially over (ended in January) and he’s now allowed to enter horses into major tracks in New York again. However, he’s still banned from Churchill Downs and while he won’t be able to attend this year’s Kentucky Derby, one of his trained horses will.
He has a contender in Arabian Knight and the thoroughbred is surely to be scrutinized – especially if he wins. The three-year-old colt is jockeyed by John Velazquez who has won the Kentucky Derby three times. He last won in 2020 on another Baffert-trained horse: Authentic.
Arabian Knight has only raced twice but has won both outings. The Southwest Stakes is the only graded race he’s won. However, he beat Forte – the horse that’s favored to win the Kentucky Derby right now – in the Southwest Stakes. Overall, Arabian Knight has been mighty impressive in his two outings, winning by a whopping 12 3/4 lengths.
The horse was transferred to trainer Tim Yakteen, which then allows it to be entered in the Kentucky Derby next month. Even though Baffert won’t be there, it’s clear that this will be one of his entries and he’ll be a big talking point if Arabian Knight does win.