Those looking to bet on the Kentucky Derby 2017 online will have plenty of options but also some big questions, like whether it’s legal and what sites are legitimate.
The annual Run for the Roses is set to take place on Saturday at Churchill Downs in Kentucky, capping off what is one of the biggest sports betting days of the year. The races draws fans from all across the country, from the dedicated horse racing aficionado who followed every race leading up to the Kentucky Derby down to the novice fans who throw a couple of dollars down on the horse with the name they like the best.
CNN Money noted that there was $124 million in legal wagers on the Kentucky Derby this year, a total that’s expected to grow in 2017. While some people will trek down to the nearest Off-Track Betting location to make a wager, a growing number are looking to bet on the Kentucky Derby online.
And as CNN Money notes, it’s actually legal almost everywhere in the United States to make bets online.
“Putting money on the race is legal in most of the country thanks to a 1978 law that allows people to bet on horse races across state lines, not just at the track,” the report noted. “An amendment in 2000 allowed wagers online and by phone, though those are still restricted or banned in 10 states.”
There are plenty of options for placing a bet on the Kentucky Derby online (with links to some of the most popular sites below), and also some tips from racing experts about what horses are contenders for the crown.
Going into the race, Classic Empire was the most popular pick to win and had the best odds at 6-to-1. There were some other contenders, including Always Dreaming at 9-to-2 odds, and McCracken which also posted 6-to-1 odds on Friday.
Those looking to bet on the Kentucky Derby 2017 online should also keep an eye on the weather forecast. Friday’s Kentucky Oaks — a prelude to the Derby — took place on a sloppy track after hours of steady rain. As ESPN noted, rain would be good for Classic Empire and a handful of other horses that have experience running in the mud.
“Of this year’s entrants, Classic Empire and Lookin at Lee have experience racing on a wet track at Churchill Downs. Classic Empire won his career debut by 1½ lengths on a sloppy track, while Lookin at Lee finished second in the Grade III Iroquois on a muddy track.
“Gormley won the Grade III Sham Stakes on a sloppy track at Santa Anita, Hence broke his maiden on a wet track at Oaklawn Park, and Battle of Midway won his career debut on a wet-fast track at Santa Anita.”
There’s more than just trying to pick the winner. As Churchill Downs racing analyst Kevin Kerstein told CNN Money, there are some other fun ways to bet on the race including some long shots that could end up paying huge dividends.
“Kerstein said more experienced bettors may want to fill out a Pick 3. That means picking the winners of three consecutive races. There’s also a Pick 4 and a Pick 6. These wagers typically have low starting prices — about 50 cents. But you have to pick correctly at least three times in a row.
“The Pick 6 culminates with the Derby race. Kerstein said picking the right horses can mean a six-figure payoff. Bettors normally lay more than $2 million in Pick 6 bets alone.”
So, where can you bet on the Kentucky Derby 2017 online? As CNN Money noted, the largest sites are Bovada and Xpressbet along with TwinSpires, which is actually the official betting site of the Kentucky Derby.
[Featured Image by Rob Carr/Getty Images]