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Kentucky Derby 2020 Picks and Analysis

Horse Racing Radar
Rich Bieglmeier
Friday, September 4, 2020

BONUS: Matt Dinerman, track announcer for Golden Gate Fields, joins The Player's Edge once again to discuss some big, upcoming races at Golden Gate Fields as well as his picks, favorites and longshots for the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. You don't want to miss his Derby/Oaks Double. Last time, he gave us the Belmont Stakes exacta, straight cold!

 

You can catch up with Matt at: https://twitter.com/3coltshandicap

 
 

Going to steal Bob Seger's "seems like yesterday, but it was long ago" when Star Trek the movie was released and M M M My Sharona was the #1 song in the land. The year was 1979. To paraphrase another Seger song, 41-years now, where'd they go, 41-years, I don't know, I sit and wonder sometimes where they've gone.

Why the nostalgia for 1979 and years gone by? SPECTACULAR BID won the Kentucky Derby and it was the last time a Derby Champ won at less than even-money odds. The great SPECTACULAR BID wore the roses at 3/5 that first Saturday of May - 1979.

 
 
 

Fast Forward to 2020, TIZ THE LAW (PP: 17) will try to take us back and repeat SPECTACULAR BID's performance and win at odds that will likely be less than 1-1. He's the morning line favorite at 3/5 odds to be this year's Kentucky Derby Champion. We don't see the Sackatoga Stable's horse leaving the gates at more than even-money.

 
 
 

Can he put his name next to greats like SPECTACULAR BID and SEATTLE SLEW as winners that paid less than $4.00? All the statistics, angles, history... say yes. TIZ THE LAW checks all the boxes in our Profile of a Kentucky Derby Winner story.

AUTHENTIC (PP: 18 ML 8-1) is the horse that received the second most checkmarks. He has the right setup with an outside post and speed. The last six Kentucky Derby winners were positioned in the top three after the first 1/4 mile. Yes, we included MAXIMUM SECURITY. Is there any doubt he was the best horse in 2019's KD field? Minus a second-place finish to HONOR A.P., all of his other four starts ended in the winners' circle.  I am not sure if we should be alarmed or elated as AUTHENTIC is not getting any love from "experts" as in their selections. We'll know soon enough.

 
 
 

In our analysis of past Kentucky Derbies, we noticed outside horses with the ability to come late usually find their way to the front late. HONOR A.P. (PP: 16 ML 5-1) meets that criteria nicely. Although, he's more likely to be middle of the pack and forward than way back. He consistently put some of the best, late pace numbers on paper in his five starts. The other 16 better be worried if HONOR A.P. is withing out of the final turn they come striking distance.

Another common theme in recent runs for the roses is a longshot that gets a piece of back-half or exotics. The horse that ruins 1000s of exacta, trifecta, and superfecta tickets. We feel SOUTH BEND (PP: 8 ML 50-1) could be that horse this year. Why not? It's 2020 after all, nothing is off the table. He's making his second start for trainer William Mott and showed big-time improvement in his first go with Mott. If the experienced trainer can get more from SOUTH BEND, he could win the Derby for the second year in a row. This time without a disqualification.

That's how we line up the 146th Kentucky Derby in our Wagering Guide and this is how our handicapper put in on paper in our Pro Subscribers' Bonus Commentary.

"TIZ THE LAW ran the top last race speed figure and checks off every box for a Kentucky Derby winner. He is the one to beat. AUTHENTIC has the best chance to take the field from gate to wire. He's won four of five with a second where he got off to a slow start. It's could be telling that jockey Mike Smith picked HONOR A.P. over AUTHENTIC. Although he's ridden A.P. in every race, he was on AUTHENTIC in his Haskell win. SOUTH BEND kept popping up no matter how we ranked them. His late ace figures are as good as any of the rest and he's won two of three at Churchill. Why not at 50-1?"


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