by Chris, the Impaler - 04/18/2006
With only a few short weeks before the Run for the Roses, many offshore sports investment parlors have hung proposition bets on the 132nd running of the Kentucky Derby on May 6. If you bet on Triple Crown races and want some pre-Derby action before the public wakes up, but don't want to risk a futures Win bet on the Kentucky Derby, peruse a few proposition bets that Bodog and Nine Sportsbook offer for the first leg of the Triple Crown. The great part about these proposition bets on the Kentucky Derby is that you don't need to watch endless hours of Kentucky Derby preps to win some money and you just might enjoy the ride.
What will the Derby Winner Saddle Cloth Number be:
True blood sport enthusiasts are a superstitious lot and are subject to the vagaries of numerology like the rest of the wagering public. But this doesn't change the fact that betting on the number of the saddle cloth at the Kentucky Derby is akin to betting the coin toss at the Big Dance. Our Friends at Nine Sportsbook are offering sides, odd number or even number, at -105. Whichever side you take, keep in mind that four of the last six Derby winners' saddle cloths were even with only two odd winners since the millennium; Smarty Jones, 15, and War Emblem, 5. Like with a coin toss, when betting on the number of the saddle cloth, past results are not indicative or future results.
Will the winner of the 132nd Kentucky Derby win the 131st Preakness Stakes?
If you shop at offshore sports brokerage house Bodog you'll lay four dollars if say no, but earn a nifty +2.50 if you think the winner of the Kentucky Derby will also win the Preakness. In fact there is a trend that favors the winner of the Kentucky Derby also winning the Preakness. In recent Triple Crown history, the horse that won the Kentucky Derby also won the Preakness in the past three out of four years; War Emblem, Funny Cide and Smarty Jones went from Churchill Downs to win the 1 3/16-mile Preakness.
The smart money plays on yes +250 for this proposition.
Will the winner of the 132nd Kentucky Derby win the 138th Belmont Stakes?
Not since Thunder Gulch in 1995 has a Kentucky Derby winner also won the Belmont stakes and before that back-to-back Triple Crown winners in 1978 with Affirmed and 1977 with Seattle Slew. This is why if you bet no on this proposition bet at Bodog Sports you'll have to lay a hefty -940. You could say backing a prop that says the winner of the Kentucky Derby will be the same as the winner of the Belmont Stakes is almost as rare as a Triple Crown winner. But if you decide to buck tradition and back the yes you can earn +520 at Bodog and a whopping +650 at Nine Sports.
What will the Kentucky Derby Mutual Win pay?
This year the Kentucky Derby field is wide open, but a few horses have distinguished themselves from the field. Horses like Lawyer Ron, Barbaro, Steppenwolfer and Brother Derek will come in at short odds against as many as 20 horses. This proposition offered by Nine Sportsbook is a horse of a different color; if you are uncomfortable picking a horse, why not wager on what the horse will payout? You are essentially betting whether or not a long shot or a short odds horse will win this race. You can back the over $18.50 for -125. In other words the horse that wins the Kentucky Derby will go off at 9.5/1 or better odds. Or take the under $18.50 at -105 as the horse that wins the Kentucky Derby goes off at less than 9.5/1 odds.
If you like to bet favorites in a marquee horse race then you'll grab the under $18.50. If you think Strong Contender will beat Lawyer Ron, Brother Derek and Barbaro then by all means grab the over. This year I wouldn't bank on another long shot like Giacomo (50/1) winning at Churchill Downs. But you can't ignore the Kentucky Derby trend of huge payouts in four of the last six Kentucky Derby's. Last year Giacomo had the second largest Mutual Win at $102.60 while in 2004 Smarty Jones paid only $10.20, far below Funny Cide's $27.60 in 2003 and $43.00 by War Emblem in 2002 while Monarchos paid $23.00 in 2001. In 2000, the No. 2 horse, Fusaichi Pegasus paid only $6.60.
Whether you prefer propositions offshore or pari-mutuel wagering at the walk-up window one thing is certain: the Kentucky Derby offers the seasoned and novice sports investor a way to increase their bankroll while enjoying the fastest two minutes in sports.