From Nyquist to Gun Runner, from Exaggerator to Brody’s Cause, there are several horses with a legitimate chance of winning the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs this Saturday.
“It is really a deep field,” NBC Sports NHL and horse racing expert Eddie Olczyk said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “It is. I think you can make a case for six or seven horses without question. When you get a field this big – and look, we don’t get 20-horse fields very often. (We get them) at the Kentucky Derby and maybe you get another race or two but not with this type of a statured race.”
Olczyk uses a process of elimination to predict horse races.
“When I handicap, I look at it and go, ‘Okay, let me start working my way back. Who do I think has no shot?’” he said. “All of a sudden, you get to about seven or eight horses left and you go ‘Yeah, I can make a case for him, I can make a case for him,’ and you go on and on. That’s what makes it such a great value betting race.”
Olczyk believes that Nyquist, a 3-1 favorite who is named after Red Wings forward Gustav Nyquist, will win the Derby.
“I don’t think he’s head and shoulders above everybody else, but I do believe he’s shoulders ahead of everybody else,” Olczyk said. “He’s a perfect 7-for-7. He’s won pretty much in every way possible – on the lead, just off, coming from way out of it, winning out of post position. So for me, I do believe it’s Nyquist. If you can find some other horses to pair up with him, (it could work in your favor). If he happens to get beat and you get a nice longshot there, you can make some money on Saturday. I think there’s a little bit more speed in that race than people are talking about. I believe it’s going to be a quicker pace than a lot of the experts are talking about.”
Saturday marks the 142nd running of the Kentucky Derby. Last year’s winner, American Pharoah, went on to win the Triple Crown. He was the fourth horse to do so since 1948 and the first horse to do so since Affirmed in 1978.
Post-time is slated for 6:34 p.m. ET.