Latest Updates On the Upcoming Kentucky Derby 2021

Horse Racing Radar
Valerie Mellema
Valerie Mellema is a Staff writer for Horse Racing Radar
Thursday, April 22, 2021

The Road to the Kentucky Derby has finally come to an end, which means that the participants for the upcoming Kentucky Derby were officially named. However, this also means that the Kentucky Derby has closed its doors for some hopefuls. 

The bettors who are looking to bet on the Kentucky Derby now have more solid predictions as to who will dominate the derby this year based on the recent updates on the prep race. To provide a more extensive view of the possibilities on the derby, let us talk about the recent updates regarding the recently concluded event.  

The 20 Derby Participants 

It has been months since the prep race has started, and derby bettors have studied every race to figure out who among the participants are the best picks and make it till the end. Now the results are in. Below are the top 20 contenders that everyone will see on the race track this coming May 2.  

  • Essential Quality (140 points)  
  • Hot Rod Charlie (110 points) 
  • Super Stock (109 points) 
  • Like the King (104 points) 
  • Known Agenda (102 points) 
  • Rock Your World (100 points) 
  • Bourbonic (100 points) 
  • Medina Spirit (74 points) 
  • Midnight Bourbon (66 points) 
  • Mandaloun (52 points) 
  • Caddo River (50 points) 
  • Highly Motivated (50 points) 
  • Helium (50 points) 
  • Soup and Sandwich (40 points) 
  • Dynamic One (40 points) 
  • Sainthood (40 points) 
  • Hidden Stash (32 points) 
  • Besos (25 points) 
  • Get Her Number (20 points) 

The final leaderboard of the 20 contenders that will compete for the 2021 Kentucky Derby includes new names that have not been mentioned earlier on the Road to the Kentucky Derby race. However, it is also noticeable that some early favorites and early leading contenders made it to the final list and will be given a chance to run at Churchill Downs next month. 


The Early Leads Who Didn't Make It 

In the early months of the Road to the Kentucky Derby, their names were on the leaderboard and they were also constant on the predictions that many horse race experts made. However, some were not able to make it into the leaderboard today and are not one of the official contenders of the 2021 Kentucky Derby.   

Some of the earlier predicted to be participating in the derby this year are: 

  • Life is Good 
  • Concert Tour 
  • Keepmeinmind 
  • Senor Buscador 
  • Spielberg 
  • Proxy 

These names are some of the competitors in the derby prep race that many bettors rooted for as they have shown great skills on the race track. However, these new players who dominated the leaderboard not only had the skills, but their trainers had the strategy that helped them achieve their current position as well.  

Recent Odds and Predictions 

Let us tackle the recent odds and predictions now that we already have the list of the official contenders of the Kentucky Derby. This time the predictions are more likely to happen in the derby.  


2021 Kentucky Derby Odds 

  • Essential Quality: 3/1 
  • Rock Your World: 6/1 
  • Known Agenda: 8/1 
  • Highly Motivated: 10/1 
  • Hot Rod Charlie: 10/1 
  • Medina Spirit: 15/1 
  • Midnight Bourbon: 20/1 
  • Mandaloun: 20/1 
  • Super Stock: 20/1 
  • Caddo River: 30/1 
  • Sour and Sandwich: 30/1 
  • Besos: 30/1 
  • Like the King: 40/1 
  • Bourbonic: 40/1 
  • Helium: 40/1 
  • Dynamic One: 40/1 
  • Sainthood: 50/1 
  • Hidden Stash: 50/1 
  • Get Her Number: 50/1 



ESSNTIAL QUALITY was the early favorite to top the derby prep race and win the Kentucky Derby itself. Even though he dropped a few spots on the prep race leaderboard when his trainer Brad Cox decided to give him some rest and did not allow him participate in some races, he rose back again and reclaimed the first spot in the leaderboard.  

And now that he's showed the public what he's capable of, thanks to his trainer Brad Cox and jockey Luis Saez, ESSENTIAL QUALITY has maintained his clean undefeated record, which puts him back on several horse racing experts' radars. Once again, ESSENTIAL QUALITY is the favorite horse to enter the 2021 Kentucky Derby, and they are predicted to win the first race of this year's triple crown.  

ESSENTIAL QUALITY will need enough rest and training to deliver on the upcoming big race. With the help of his trainer plus the handling skills of his jockey, there is a high percentage that ESSENTIAL QUALITY will be this year's derby winner.  

However, you must also consider other favorites in the race, such as ROCK YOUR WORLD by John Sadler and, of course, MEDINA SPIRIT by the Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert. 


In Conclusion 

You can't tell whether a participant amongst the top will make it till the end. It is still best to keep your options open and only decide when the end is nearing, as this is when you can see the most probable result of a specific race or event.