The newest chapter of thoroughbred racing lore will be written on Saturday at Churchill Downs, as the fastest three-year-old horses in the world are set to compete in the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby.
NBC Sports Network will have coverage of undercard races from Noon – 2:30 p.m. ET, and coverage will switch over to NBC from 2:30 – 7:30 p.m. ET, with the post time for the Kentucky Derby scheduled for 6:50 p.m. ET. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a television, you can still watch the Derby–as well as all the undercard races–live on your computer, phone or streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
Hulu With Live TV: In addition to their extensive Netflix-like streaming library, Hulu now also offers a bundle of live television channels, including both NBC (live in select markets) and NBC Sports Network. You can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV” right here, and you can then watch a live stream of the race on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app.
FuboTV: NBC (live in select markets) and NBC Sports Network are both included in the “Fubo Premier” channel package. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial, and you can then watch the race live on your computer via the FuboTV website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the FuboTV app.
DirecTV Now: NBC (live in select markets) and NBC Sports Network are both included in all four channel bundles. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial no matter what package you choose, and you can then watch the race live on your computer via the DirecTV Now website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app.
The favorite for this year’s “Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports” depends on who you might ask, but according to the oddsmakers, the horse to beat is Justify.
Trained by Bob Baffert, who has Derby wins in 1997, 1998, 2002 and most recently 2015 with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, and jockeyed by Hall of Famer Mike Smith, Justify has won all three of his races, most recently dominating the Grade-1 Santa Anita Derby. In that race, he led the entire trip and pulled away in impressive fashion down the stretch, suggesting he should be able to handle the 1 1/4 mile length on Saturday.
Right behind Justify on the odds list is Mendelssohn, who could really be considered the co-favorite. After capping his two-year-old season with a win at the Grade-1 Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf back in November, Mendelssohn cemented himself as a legitimate contender with an absolute decimation of a strong field at the Grade-2 UAE Derby on March 31, winning by over 18 lengths in a stunningly good performance.
Two other interesting horses to pay attention to are Good Magic and Bolt D’Oro. They were early betting favorites after Good Magic won the Grade-1 Breeders Cup Juvenile in November and Bolt d’Oro started his career with three straight wins, including Grade-1 victories at the Del Mar Futurity and FrontRunner Stakes, but since cooled off with bettors. Still, both enter coming off good performances in April, as Good Magic took down the Grade-2 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland, and Bolt d’Oro gave Justify a good challenge in the Santa Anita Derby.
Even more contenders reside in the stable of Todd Pletcher, who is seeking to become the first trainer with back-to-back Derby wins since Baffert in ’97 and ’98. He has four horses in this year’s field, with the two strongest in that quartet being Audible, who won the Grade-1 Florida Derby, and Magnum Moom, who is undefeated and won the Grade-1 Arkansas Derby but wasn’t handed any favors with a post position of No. 16.
Put it all together, and that’s six horses who have odds that are shorter than 10-to-1. There may be a couple of clear favorites at the top, but this is still a really deep, strong field that should make for an enthralling Kentucky Derby.
Source: Heavy Sports