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Kentucky Derby Odds: Bodemeister Surges Up Betting List With Arkansas Derby Win

HOT SPRINGS, AR - APRIL 14:   Jockey Mike Smith rides Bodemeister to win the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park during the Racing Festival of The South on April 14, 2012 in Hot Springs, Arkansas.    (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
HOT SPRINGS, AR - APRIL 14: Jockey Mike Smith rides Bodemeister to win the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park during the Racing Festival of The South on April 14, 2012 in Hot Springs, Arkansas. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
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Three weeks ago, horse bettors seemed prepared to concede the Kentucky Derby to Union Rags, while ignoring Bodemeister as just some horse with a weird name and 30/1 longshot odds.

Fast forward to Thursday, just two weeks before we head to Louisville, and Bodemeister is a co-favorite with Union Rags at many online racebooks.

Bodemeister destroyed the field Saturday at the Arkansas Derby, winning by nearly 10 lengths. The 108 Beyer speed figure was the highest number for a major Derby prep race this year and it was his third straight triple-digit Beyer.

He will give trainer Bob Baffert an excellent shot at going off as the morning line favorite and winning another Derby.

He surged up to 5/1 odds, just a nose behind Union Rags at 9/2. It seems the wagering public can't quite shake its fascination with the much-hyped 3-year-old, even after he faltered in the Florida Derby.

"Union Rags got stuck in the Florida Derby and nobody believes that was his best effort," said Jack Randall. "That's why racebooks like Bovada are keeping at the top and why the Kentucky Derby wagering action continues to be brisk on him."

Gemologist is next at 7/1 and he is undefeated. Dullahan, meanwhile, also won last Saturday to climb the Kentucky Derby contender rankings. His win in the Blue Grass at Keeneland was on the fake stuff.

Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner Hansen remains 14/1, but he was the victim of Dullahan's late surge last week so he comes to Churchill Downs off a loss as well.

Creative Cause remains the top pick of handicapper Mike Dempsey, but he's 12/1 currently. Alpha is also 12/1.

The rest of the main Derby contenders along with their odds, courtesy of Bovada:

UNION RAGS 9-2
BODEMEISTER 5-1
GEMOLOGIST 7-1
DULLAHAN 10-1
ALPHA 12-1
CREATIVE CAUSE 12-1
HANSEN 14-1
EL PADRINO 15-1
I'LL HAVE ANOTHER 16-1
SECRET CIRCLE 18-1
TAKE CHARGE INDY 18-1
DADDY NOSE BEST 20/1
WENT THE DAY WELL 20/1
MARK VALESKI 25/1
DONE TALKING 30/1
DADDY LONG LEGS 35/1
LIAISON 35/1
SABERCAT 35/1
ROUSING SERMON 60/1