This Saturday marks the 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby. The Kentucky Derby is the first leg of horse racing's triple crown races. Last May it was favorite Nyquist who won the run for the roses. In fact, the past four Kentucky Derbys, the starting gate favorite won the overall race. Below is this year's field and Goz's preview for the race. (jockey and opening live odds in parenthesis)

1. Lookin At Lee (Jockey – Corey Lanerie, 20-1)

2. Thunder Snow (IRE) (Christophe Soumillion)

3. Fast and Accurate (Channing Hill, 50-1)

4. Untrapped (Ricardo Santana Jr., 30-1)

5. Always Dreaming (John Velazquez, 6-1)

6. State of Honor (Jose Lezcano, 30-1

7. Girvin (Mike Smith, 15-1)

8. Hence (Florent Geroux, 15-1)

9. Irap (Mario Gutierrez, 20-1

10. Gunnevera (Javier Castellano, 15-1

11. Battle of Midway (Flavien Prat, 30-1)

12. Sonneteer (Kent Desormeaux, 50-1)

13. J Boys Echo (Luis Saez, 20-1)

14. Classic Empire (Julien Leparoux, 4-1)

15. McCraken (Brian Hernandez Jr., 5-1)

16. Tapwrit (Jose Ortiz, 20-1)

17. Irish War Cry (Rajiv Maragh, 6-1)

18. Gormley (Victor Espinoza, 15-1)

19. Practical Joke (Joel Rosario, 20-1)

20. Patch (Tyler Gaffalione, 30-1)

Also Eligible: Royal Mo (20/1), Master Plan (50/1)

Goz's Thoughts

This year is much different than the past four years for me in the sense that no one truly impressed me during the prep race cycle. Plus, forecasts are calling for a sixty percent chance of rain in Louisville and this makes the 2017 Kentucky Derby very difficult to handicap. Will the favorite Classic Empire have enough space to make the move that he did in the Arkansas Derby? (1:37)


Will Irish War Cry actually run better in the mud? This piece from the Louisville Courier thinks so

This year I'm going way off the path and going with the #8 horse Hence. Hence screams Animal Kingdom from 2010 to me. Both Hence and Animal Kingdom won a 1 mile and 1/8 race as their final prep race before the Derby. If you need more of a coincidence, both did it on the same exact day! (March 26th). Plus Hence ran that 1 1/8 4 full seconds faster than Animal Kingdom (1:52 compared to 1:48). Give me the #8 Hence as your winner. Some of his highlights are below. Here is the my top 4!

1: (8) Hence 2: (14) Classic Empire 3: (5) Irish War Cry 4:  (1) Lookin at Lee