Kentucky Derby 2014 post positions: Positions and morning-line odds set

Rob Carr

The field for the 140th running of the Kentucky Derby is now set.

Kentucky Derby morning-line favorite California Chrome drew post position No. 5 and is a 5-2 favorite to win the 140th "Run for the Roses." Wicked Strong and Hoppertunity are the top challengers to California Chrome, and both were able to avoid the dreaded No. 1 post. Wicked Strong drew the No. 20 gate while Hoppertunity will break from the No. 11 gate.

The draw can have a major impact on the outcome of the race. Get stuck too far outside and your chances go down. No horse has ever won the Kentucky Derby running from the 17th gate like Commanding Curve will this year. Getting stuck along the rail can also be an issue, with no Derby winner coming from the first two inside spots in the last 25 years. There are always exceptions -- like I'll Have Another winning from the No. 19 gate in 2012 -- but a poor draw is a lot to overcome.

California Chrome will enter the derby having won four straight stakes. Even with the wins, there have been issues with California Chrome's break, possibly making post position an even bigger factor. Staying away from the rail could be a key, as another poor break won't necessarily pin California Chrome behind the field with too much ground to make up right off the bat. California Chrome has had success running from the No. 5 post, including winning the Santa Anita Derby. If California Chrome is able to come away with the win, it would make history in the process. At 77 years old, trainer Art Sherman would become the oldest trainer to win the Kentucky Derby.

Wicked Strong was unfortunate to draw the No. 20 post and will have ground to make up starting from the far outside. Ride on Curlin with jockey Calvin Borel also landed an outside spot and will break next to Wicked Strong at the No. 19 post. Hoppertunity, trained by Bob Baffert, was more fortunate, drawing the 11th post. Hoppertunity jockey Mike Smith said he was happy with the No. 11 post, although the horse will have to be in the gate for a while.

Any concerns of getting the rail went away early with Vicar's In Trouble drawing the No. 1 position on the very first draw. The trainers and jockeys did have to sweat some with the No. 2 post staying on the board late into the draw before Harry's Holiday was saddled with the spot.

Pablo Del Monte is an alternate entry and would be added to the field if any of the current 20 horses scratch before 9 a.m. ET on Friday.

Below are the post positions and morning line odds for the 2014 Kentucky Derby:

Post Position

Horse

Jockey

Trainer

Odds

1

Vicar's In Trouble

Rosie Napravnik

Mike Maker

30-1

2

Harry's Holiday

Corey Lanerie

Mike Maker

50-1

3

Uncle Sigh

Irad Ortiz Jr.

Gary Contessa

30-1

4

Danza

Joe Bravo

Todd Pletcher

10-1

5

California Chrome

Victor Espinoza

Art Sherman

5-2

6

Samraat

Jose Ortiz

Rick Violette Jr.

15-1

7

We Miss Artie

Javier Castellano

Todd Pletcher

50-1

8

General A Rod

Joel Rosario

Mike Maker

15-1

9

Vinceremos

Joe Rococo Jr.

Todd Pletcher

30-1

10

Wildcat Red

Luis Saez

Joe Garoffalo

15-1

11

Hoppertunity

Mike Smith

Bob Baffert

6-1

12

Dance With Fate

Corey Nakatani

Peter Eurton

20-1

13

Chitu

Martin Garcia

Bob Baffert

20-1

14

Medal Count

Robby Albarado

Dale Romans

20-1

15

Tapiture

Ricardo Santana Jr.

Steve Asmussen

15-1

16

Intense Holiday

John Velazquez

Todd Pletcher

12-1

17

Commanding Curve

Shaun Bridgmohan

Dallas Stewart

50-1

18

Candy Boy

Gary Stevens

John Sadler

20-1

19

Ride On Curlin

Calvin Borel

William G. Gowan

15-1

20

Wicked Strong

Rajiv Maragh

James A. Jerkens

8-1

21 AE

Pablo Del Monte

Jeffrey Sanchez

Wesley Ward

50-1

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