Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Local Horses in Kentucky Derby

Local Appeal

There will be a full house with 20 horses racing in the 2017 Kentucky Derby on Saturday, and 17 of them have some affiliation to Marion County. Some horses trained there, some rehabbed in the area but all the local ties should make the running of the 143rd Kentucky Derby that much more interesting to watch. The race will be held at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky and it could be a sloppy track as it has rained for much of the week and it could rain on race day as well.

Expert Opinion

It has been raining Friday and there is a high chance of rain for Saturday in Louisville.

The Philadelphia Daily News horse racing columnist, Dick Jerardi, talked with Steve Russell on our Sportscene show about the race.  Jerardi says the weather makes the race more wearisome on the horses and jockeys. Most horses don’t practice in those conditions, so there’s an uncertainty about which horses will do well in inclement conditions.

Jerardi said that people should watch for is J Boys Echo to be the dark horse in the race.

May 6, 2016; Louisville, KY, USA; John Velazquez aboard Curalina after winning The La Troienne the 2016 Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs. Mandatory Credit: Pat McDonogh/Louisville Courier-Journal via USA TODAY NETWORK

He adds that all things being equal you put trust in experienced jockeys in the race such as Hall of Famer John Velazques racing Always Dreaming. He also would also credit Victor Espinoza riding Gormley and Mike Smith riding Girvin to be two of the most qualified jockeys in the race.

Best Odds for Marion County

Always Dreaming is at 5-1 and will be ridden by John Velazquez. When Always dreaming was a yearling he spent time in Ocala at Crupi’s New Castle Farm and went back last year for rehab.

McCraken is also at 5-1  and will be ridden by Brian Hernandez Jr. When McCraken was a yearling he trained with Junior Serna of Lambholm South.

The Other Horses Trained in Ocala

The 15-1 odd horses are Gunnevera, Girvin, Hence and Gormley.

The 20-1 odd horses are Irap, J Boys Echo, Tapwrit and Practical Joke.

The 30-1 odd horses are Untrapped, State of Honor and Battle of Midway.

The 50-1 odd horses are Fast and Accurate and Sonneteer.

Race Time

The race will kick-off at 6:30 PM on Saturday. You can catch coverage on NBC.

About Sarah Carlie Morton

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