2011 Triple Crown Lines
The 2011 Triple Crown horse racing season kicks off this Saturday, May 7 with the 137th running of the crowned jewel of the three races; the Kentucky Derby from fabled Churchill Downs in Louisville.
2011 Kentucky Derby Current Odds and Preview
Date: Saturday May 7th
Location: Churchill Downs, Louisville KY
Post Time: 6:04 PM (EST)
TV Network: NBC, 5:00PM (EST)
The second jewel of the season will be held two weeks later with the running of the Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 21 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. The final jewel is the Belmont Stakes from Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. This race is scheduled for Saturday, June 11.
The winner of this Saturday’s Kentucky Derby will then have a chance to go after one of the most elusive titles in all of sports. The last time a horse captured the Triple Crown was back in 1978 when Affirmed became just the 11th horse in history to win all three races. Since then, 11 horses have managed to win the first two legs, but have failed to win the longest of the three races; the 1 ½ mile Belmont. The last horse that won the first two legs was Big Brown back in 2008.
BetUS.com has set the odds for ‘yes’ there will be a Triple Crown winner this year at +700 and ‘no’ at -1100. The odds that a horse wins the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness are set at +150 for ‘yes’ and -200 for ‘no’. The odds that a horse wins the Kentucky Derby and the Belmont are set at +300 for ‘yes’ and -600 for ‘no’. It is obvious that the added distance of the Belmont remains a huge hurdle for a horse to get past along with the physical and mental strain of running three major stakes races in the span of just five weeks.
Uncle Mo is one of the early favorites to win this year’s Derby but even he has some long action at +300 for ‘yes’ he will win Saturday’s race and -550 for ‘no’ he will not. Given that there are no overwhelming favorites this year’s race, BetUS.com has the odds on a wire-to-wire run in the Kentucky Derby at +700 for ‘yes’ and -1500 for ‘no’.
Last year a different horse won each race with Super Saver winning the Kentucky Derby at 8-1 odds, Lookin at Lucky winning the Preakness at 2-1 odds, and Drosselmeyer winning the Belmont at 13-1 odds. Super Saver was a 2-1 co-favorite in the Preakness but finished a disappointing eighth. Trainer Todd Pletcher decided to not even run him in the Belmont.
Pletcher also trains Uncle Mo, who is currently listed by SportsInteraction.com as the second favorite to win on Saturday at +400. He was named ‘Juvenile Horse of the Year’ after a spectacular season as a two-year old, but he finished third in the Wood Memorial in his only race this year as a three-year old.
The current odds-on-favorite to win the Derby is Dialed In at +350. He is trained by Nick Zito and ridden by Julien Leparoux. He comes into this race with victories in the Holy Bull Stakes earlier in the year and the Florida Derby on April 3. Dialed In would most likely be the odds-on-favorite to win the Preakness with a successful run at Churchill. Should he claim that jewel it would be on to the Belmont, where the added distance and wear and tear of the first two legs could take its toll.
There is no doubt that Dialed In is a quality Thoroughbred, but he is not of the same stock as Affirmed or any of the other past Triple Crown Champions.