LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Bob Baffert not only has the Kentucky Derby favorite, but two other horses capable of giving him a piece of history. Game Winner is the 9-2 favorite for Saturday’s 145th running at Churchill Downs after opening as the 5-1 second choice behind Omaha Beach, who was scratched because of a breathing problem. Baffert’s two other pupils, Roadster and Improbable, are 5-1 co-second choices that give the Hall of Fame trainer additional chances to win a sixth Derby and tie Ben Jones’ record.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — In a Kentucky Derby lacking a dominant favorite, two-time Triple Crown-winning trainer Bob Baffert saddles the top three choices. Game Winner is the pre-race favorite, albeit a tepid one at 9-2. Improbable and Roadster were installed as the co-second choices at 5-1. The 19-horse field for what could be a rainy Derby reflects the prep season leading to the opening leg of the Triple Crown: no one horse commanded attention.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Serengeti Empress went wire to wire-to-win the $1.25 million Kentucky Oaks by 1 3/4 lengths over Liora at Churchill Downs. The start featured a scary moment when Positive Spirit fell down and threw jockey Manny Franco after clipping another horse as the 14-horse field closed together from the gate. Both were able to get up and walk off the track. Serengeti Empress started from the No. 13 post to lead by the first turn and stay ahead despite Liora’s late attempt to close the gap.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Triple Crown-winning jockey Mike Smith will ride in the Kentucky Derby after all. He has picked up the mount on Cutting Humor, a 30-1 shot trained by Todd Pletcher. The 53-year-old Smith had been on the early 4-1 favorite, Omaha Beach. But the colt was scratched because of a breathing problem.
UNDATED (AP) — NBC’s coverage of the Kentucky Derby will include a couple of new technological features. The biggest one is a super slow-motion camera on the pole of the finish line on the main track. The camera can provide a reverse angle for the Derby finish. There’s also a 360-degree “glam cam” on the red carpet that will capture fans and celebrities’ Derby outfits.
The derby is televised on NBC and start time for the running is at 5:50PM Central Time.