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Betting On Kentucky Derby - Fine Tuning

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 5/1/2012 1:28:31 PM

With just one semi-serious horse going this weekend in the Lexington, now is a good time for online Kentucky Derby betting players to evaluate how trainers are fine-tuning their stock with the Kentucky Derby in prospect only weeks away.

How runners are being brought up to the biggest day in their collective lives can play just as important as to how the race the first Saturday in May unfolds.

Coming to the Derby a horse can not miss an oat. His coat can’t be off, he can’t have a sniffle, he can’t take a bad step. It has to go just about perfectly for a win to materialize.

When listening to trainers speak as the Road to the Derby continues, try to read in between the lines. Some say trainers only lie when their mouths are moving, so put a grain of salt next to every time you hear the words, ‘we would not trade places with anybody’.

In the last few years, fresh horses have done well in the Derby but that can play against horses in the heat of the battle. Check out the betting thoughts of a couple of Kentucky Derby winning trainers in the last several years.

On getting Charismatic, a reformed claimer, to win the 1999 Derby D. Wayne Lukas shared these thoughts, Lukas: “ I finally said, I think this horse is fat and lazy but I’m going to get him dead fit. I’m going to ask him to do things that he wouldn’t dream of. And I bore down on him, I drilled him, I treated him with tough love, if you want to call it that - and suddenly I had a fine-tuned athlete that went on to win the Derby, the Preakness and almost won the Belmont.”

Bob Baffert after War Emblem won the 2002 Derby: “After Point Given, I wondered if I’d ever win another one of these again--it’s just too damn hard to win. This year, I took a different outlook: I’m going to get him and train that son of a gun the best I can and get him sharp and lead him up there and see what happens.”

We’ll see how this philosophy has either stayed the same or changed in the way Baffert handles Bodemeister in the important days to come.

One of the many things that makes the Kentucky Derby so unique and iconic is for one thing these horses basically will be trying to go a furlong further than they even had in their career. This is a situation that is taxing not only for the horse, but because the connections don’t exactly know what is left in the tank.

Only one runner in modern times has won at a mile and a quarter before winning the Derby and his tale is legend. The year was 1971, Richard Nixon was President, U.S. troops were in Vietnam and the average baseball salary was 28 grand.

Bought for $1,200 Canonero II and after a poor experience in the states, he was sent back to his native Venezuela and only then started to thrive. The budding star won in his sophomore there at 10 furlongs, shipped in and won the Kentucky Derby despite a horrible shipping incident, and proved it was no fluke by winning the Preakness too.

Lastly, remember that no matter how much hype a runner is getting with the online betting community, and Bodemeister will get hyped because of the winning margin, they all can be beaten.

Secretariat, arguably the greatest horse ever, was beaten 5 times in his career, and superstar Curlin came into the 2007 Derby last year also sporting a 3 for 3 record and boasting a 105 Beyer in the prior race to the Derby yet only mustered a well-beaten third.

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