The Run for the Roses: A look at the 150th Kentucky Derby field (2024)

LOUISVILLE — The 150th running of the Kentucky Derby is set for Saturday at Churchill Downs. The field for the race was set last Saturday, with an earlier draw than usual held on opening day at the track.

The 1 ¼ mile race is scheduled to go off at 6:57 p.m. Eastern on Saturday and will be aired on NBC. Before that, here’s what to know about each of the horses in the field.

1. Dornoch

Trainer: Danny Gargan

Jockey: Luis Saez

Morning line odds: 20-1

The first of two entries for Gargan, Dornoch is a classic front-runner. That’s going to be difficult coming from the inside post, a tough draw for the Good Magic 3-year-old.

2. Sierra Leone

Trainer: Chad Brown

Jockey: Tyler Gaffalione

Odds: 3-1

Brown has won nearly everything in horse racing, except for the Kentucky Derby. The last-out winner of the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland could give him his best chance in years and appears to be one of the top contenders.

3. Mystik Dan

Trainer: Kenny McPeek

Jockey: Brian Hernandez Jr.

Odds: 20-1

McPeek-trained horses can be a bit inconsistent. That’s the case with Mystik Dan, who won the Southwest Stakes (G2) two races ago after finishing out of the money twice, but dropped to third in the Arkansas Derby (G1) last time out.

4. Catching Freedom

Trainer: Brad Cox

Jockey: Flavien Prat

Odds: 8-1

The shortest odds out of Brad Cox’s three Derby horses. Catching Freedom is a closer who could benefit from a fast pace if he can get through the traffic.

5. Catalytic

Trainer: Saffie Joseph Jr.

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

Odds: 30-1

Joseph’s return to the Derby after he was suspended last year following a run of mysterious horse deaths. The Catalina Cruiser colt finished second in the Florida Derby (G1) and hasn’t won since breaking his maiden in October.

6. Just Steel

Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas

Jockey: Keith Asmussen

Odds: 20-1

The Justify colt represents the 50th year in which Lukas, age 88, has had a Derby horse. He ran second last time out.

7. Honor Marie

Trainer: Whit Beckman

Jockey: Ben Curtis

Odds: 20-1

The first Derby horse for both trainer and rider. Honor Marie is a popular pick to finish in the money at a nice price, though he has not won as a 3-year-old.

8. Just a Touch

Trainer: Brad Cox

Jockey: Florent Geroux

Odds: 10-1

Another Cox entry, the Justify colt finished second behind Sierra Leone in the Blue Grass. He has never won going more than six furlongs.

9. T O Password

Trainer: Daisuke Takayanagi

Jockey: Kazushi Kimura

Odds: 30-1

A horse shipping from Japan has never won the Kentucky Derby. T O Password is not expected to become the first.

10. Forever Young

Trainer: Yosh*to Yahagi

Jockey: Ryusai Sakai

Odds: 10-1

Qualified via the UAE Derby. That race has never generated a Kentucky Derby winner, and while Forever Young’s figures are better than most previous entries, it would still be a surprise if he reigned victorious.

11. Track Phantom

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Odds: 20-1

Asmussen has won more races than any trainer in North American history. However, it would take an upset for him to get his first Kentucky Derby win with the Quality Road colt.

12. West Saratoga

Trainer: Larry Demeritte

Jockey: Jesus Castanon

Odds: 50-1

The 71-year-old Demeritte will saddle his first Derby runner on Saturday. However, the cinderella ending seems unlikely, as West Saratoga hasn’t won since September.

13. Endlessly

Trainer: Michael McCarthy

Jockey: Umberto Rispoli

Odds: 30-1

Based on pedigree and past performances, Endlessly seems better-suited for races on turf or synthetic tracks. However, after winning the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) at Turfway Park to qualify (on Tapeta), he’ll take his first crack at the dirt.

14. Domestic Product

Trainer: Chad Brown

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

Odds: 30-1

Another entry for Brown, this one with one of the top jockeys in the game. He enters as a longshot after winning the Tampa Bay Derby (G3).

15. Grand Mo the First

Trainer: Victor Barbosa Jr.

Jockey: Emisael Jaramillo

Odds: 50-1

Has not won since a September allowance race. Finished third in his last four races and will likely be a huge longshot.

16. Fierceness

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Jockey: John Velazquez

Odds: 5-2

Likely to be a top contender in the Derby, and could head straight to the front from his outside post. Velasquez recently finished first in the 2020 and 2021 Derbies with just such a trip, aboard Authentic and the later-disqualified Medina Spirit.

17. Stronghold

Trainer: Phil D’Amato

Jockey: Antonio Fresu

Odds: 20-1

The winner of the Santa Anita Derby (G1) last time out. With Bob Baffert still suspended from running horses at Churchill Downs, the Ghostzapper colt is the lone California-based entry.

18. Resilience

Trainer: Bill Mott

Jockey: Junior Alvarado

Odds: 20-1

The Into Mischief colt enters from the New York circuit, winning the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct to qualify. He’ll have a jockey change for Saturday, with Alvarado taking over the mount from John Velasquez, who will be aboard Fierceness.

19. Society Man

Trainer: Danny Gargan

Jockey: Frankie Dettori

Odds: 50-1

Gargan’s second entry in the race will be piloted by legendary jockey Frankie Dettori, who spent most of his career based in England but would like to win a Kentucky Derby before retirement.

20. Epic Ride

Trainer: John Ennis

Jockey: Adam Beschizza

Odds: 50-1

Finished third in the Blue Grass last time out, and has never won on dirt. Replaces Encino, who scratched from the race on Tuesday.

Also eligible are:

21. Mugatu

Trainer: Jeff Engler

Jockey: Joe Talamo

Odds: 50-1

Another who will need to draw in. Has not won since November in a race held on a synthetic track.

The Run for the Roses: A look at the 150th Kentucky Derby field (2024)
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