The Kentucky Derby is, without a doubt, a once-in-a-lifetime horse racing experience. This prestigious racing event has been labelled as one of the “Greatest Sporting Events” because of its large crowds, unequalled history and tradition, and one-of-a-kind spectacle. Annually, on the first Saturday of May, thousands of people congregate in Churchill Downs to have a memorable experience with their family and friends.
If you’re planning to have the best time possible at the Kentucky Derby, here are the things you should expect when betting in this horse racing event.
What is the Kentucky Derby?
The Kentucky Derby is more than just a horse race. For punters, it’s one of the most important horse racing events every year. The Derby is the first leg of the prestigious Triple Crown series and has been held annually since 1875. The Derby and its succeeding races is akin to the NFL’s Super Bowl.
The following tips can help you get so much out of your Kentucky Derby betting adventure, whether you’re making the trip to Churchill Downs or watching from the comfort of your living room.
Make a Plan
Even if you’re betting for fun, it’s a good idea to go into the race day with a plan. In betting, planning can make or break your experience. It can include setting aside a portion of your wagering budget or the strategies you’ll use to give you an edge in winning. You can even plan about the betting games you want to participate in.
Planning allows you to be one step ahead of the competition. By having a plan that you can follow through, you can stay within certain limitations while also making the best of what you have. You might even outsmart the bookies with the plans you’ve set.
Read About the Contenders
As entertaining as it is to wager on horse races, learning more about the horses participating in the race will enhance your enjoyment of the sport, as well as an edge in winning. The Kentucky Derby is a rich source of race results, knowledge and insight, and the contenders’ racing histories, which you can use for your racing advantage.
Moreover, you should also look up about the horse’s trainer and jockey. When betting, ensure that the horse has a good connection with its rider. A good horse can’t win with a bad rider and vice versa. The same goes with its trainer. Opt for horses that have been trained under reputable trainers with good track records.
Observe the Horses
Physical appearance, as with any athlete, is an important factor in sizing up the competition. Horses are no exception, and what your eyes tell you about the horse can be a valuable tool when betting.
Here are a few pointers on what to look for before placing your bet:
- Ears – When a horse’s ears are pointed, and its head is held high, that’s the sign that the horse is ready to race. However, if the horse has its ears flattened against its head or hangs its heads down, it’s safe to stay away from it.
- Coat – The condition of a horse can be determined through its coat as it is the general indicator of its health and well-being. Try to get a look at the horse’s coat while they are in the paddock. A shiny coat often indicates that the horse is in good condition.
- Muscle Definition – Winning horses, like most super-star athletes, have prominent muscles. Inspect the horse’s rib cage and chest for strong, toned muscles. You want to wager on a horse with well-defined muscles and isn’t overweight or malnourished.
- Nerves – It’s natural to be nervous before a race, but overly anxious horses aren’t always a good bet. Examine the horse’s behaviour in the paddock. If the horse is fidgety or seems to sweat excessively before even entering the racetrack, it may be too anxious to become a winning bet.
Bet on the Favourites
A good punter knows that an informed bet is better than betting based on nothing. Hence, avoid betting on horses at random. Moreover, if you prefer a less risky route when betting, opt to stick with the crowd’s favourite. Of course, when betting on the favourites, profits might be smaller compared to the alternative, but it is a good start, especially if you’re new to betting.
When it comes to the Kentucky Derby, favourites are victorious 35 percent of the time, a percentage that is more or less consistent across all other horse races. So, if you bet on every favourite throughout 12 races, you will most likely pick four or five winners. For more information, visit https://www.tvg.com/promos/kentucky-derby/kentucky-derby-picks/.
Betting on the Kentucky Derby offers a lot of fun, especially if you know what you’re doing. But, on the big day, whether you bet traditionally or online, you must have the right cards before placing your wager.
It might take a while to get the hang of it, especially if you’re a newbie, so don’t just give up until the end. However, be responsible and mindful of your bankroll. With these tips, you’ll have a good chance of making a substantial profit betting on your favourite runner in the Kentucky Derby.