This is our Kentucky Derby 2020 Online Betting Guide: sites, early odds, favorites, the essential learnings from 2019 race, gambling experts’ opinion and predictions.
Kentucky Derby Horse Race
The Kentucky Derby is a huge gambling event and the most prestigious race in the U.S. and the most famous horse race in the world.
That’s partly due to the rich history of the race, which has been run every year since 1875, but also attributable to the marketing skills of management at the host racetrack, Churchill Downs, at promoting the race over the years.
The Derby, a 1 ¼-mile race for 3-year-olds, is the first leg of the Triple Crown, a series that is conducted at three different demanding marathon distances over five weeks. Known as the “Run for the Roses” for the blanket of flowers bestowed on the winner, the Derby is always run on the first Saturday in May and almost always draws a full field of 20 horses.
It is far and away the biggest sporting event in Louisville, Kentucky, which hosts a celebration that includes riverboat races, a parade and a massive fireworks display over the Ohio River in the week leading up to the race. Roughly 150,000 fans typically attend the Derby, including tens of thousands of alcohol-infused partygoers who pack the infield for a concert.
Kentucky Derby 2020 date, place, time
The 2020 Kentucky Derby will be held on Saturday, May 2, at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. Post time will be approximately 6:50 p.m. local time, or 10:50 p.m. UTC.
Kentucky Derby 2020 Betting Odds
Legal US betting sites will be setting odds and betting markets on the Derby 2020. At the time of this writing, in the middle of 2019, it’s too early to say which horses will make it to the starting gate for Derby 2020. But the summer months are typically the time when promising horses whose connections have Kentucky Derby dreams make their debut. Many of those colts will likely make their first starts at premier summer meets like Del Mar and Saratoga, so those 2-year-old races are important to follow.
Horses qualify for the Kentucky Derby by competing in a series of prep races collectively known as the Road to the Derby and earning points, with the highest 20 points earners in those races earning a spot in the starting gate. Churchill Downs has recently included races in Europe and Japan in the prep series in an attempt to build the audience for the Derby by attracting top 3-year-olds from overseas. You can see the full list of prep races at kentuckyderby.com/horses/prep-races.
Betting on the Kentucky Derby Online
You can of course bet on the Kentucky Derby online as well as at Churchill Downs, but it’s also possible to back your opinion with cash in all states where pari-mutuel betting on horse races is legal. In addition to off-track betting outlets, including other racetracks, you can also bet on the race over the internet via legal U.S. advance deposit wagering (ADW) services. But before you sign up, make sure the service offers wagering on Churchill Downs races or at least the Kentucky Derby.
2020 Kentucky Derby Betting Sites in the USA
There are many gambling sites in the USA will accept online bets on the Kentucky Derby 2020. Check whether betting sites, such as TVG Network, 4NJbets, NyraBets, DRFBets, BetAmerica, Hollywood Races, Keeneland Select and other gambling sites accept online bets on Kentucky Derby 2020 in your state.
For example, you can bet on the Kentucky Derby 2020 online if you have an account at TVG network in the following states:
- New Hampshire
- New Mexico
- New Jersey
- North Dakota
- New York
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
2020 Kentucky Derby Betting Bonus Offers and Promotions
4NJbets and BetAmerica horse racing betting apps will be offering promotions to the existing customers and special sign-up bonus promotions on the first deposits to new players. Normally the Kentucky Derby bonus offer is 100% match bonus on the initial deposit and cash back on the lost bets. Check the online betting sites for more info.
How much are Kentucky Derby 2020 tickets and how to get them?
Getting tickets to the race can be challenging, as tour companies sweep up many of them for resale at a hefty premium. You can register for a lottery for general admission ($60) and seats ($400 to $3,000 for two-day access) held each year in the fall at KentuckyDerby.com. Or, if money is no object, you can reserve a table on Millionaire’s Row, where a table for six to eight will set you back a minimum of $3,800. Private suites for 24 or more begin at $120,000.
Where to watch the event
If you can’t attend in person, the Kentucky Derby 2020 is broadcast nationally by NBC Sports, which has the television rights sewn up through 2025. In recent years the network has also live-streamed the race on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, though you’ll need a cable or satellite TV subscription to gain access. And you can also watch at any off-track betting outlet or racebook that carries Churchill Downs.
What we learned from 2019
Because it nearly always has 20 starters – far more than your typical American race — the Kentucky Derby is generally one of the roughest races of the year, with plenty of jostling and bumping. But the 2019 edition showed that there are limits to what you can get away with, as the stewards made the first ever disqualification of the apparent winner of the race for interference.
Maximum Security finished 1 ¾ lengths ahead of Country House but was disqualified and placed 17th. The stewards conducted a lengthy review of objections by two jockeys before ruling that Maximum Security had interfered with three competitors by veering out sharply leaving the far turn.
The decision was highly controversial and resulted in a lawsuit being filed by the owner of Maximum Security seeking its reversal. That action is still pending as of this writing.
Despite the reversal, the original order of finish highlighted an important handicapping principle when it comes to the Derby. Though the 10-furlong distance requires plenty of stamina the race is typically not won by horses coming from far back. In fact, the last five winners – if you count Maximum Security as a winner — were no worse than third in the early stages of the race.
It’s probably no coincidence that the front runners have been dominating of late, as the Kentucky Derby points system, which was introduced in 2013, has kept out horses with the sprinter-type speed that used to show up in Derby fields, set blistering early fractions and then fade after a mile. Without those speed-crazy types, horses racing near the front of the pack have a built-in advantage over deep closers that need to try to thread their way through the crowded field.
There are several bet types you can choose when betting on the Kentucky Derby at BetAmerica, 4NJBets, TVG Network or Twinspires. For example, you can bet on a horse you think wins the race. It is called a win bet. Or you can bet on a horse to finish first or third. Then it is a Show Bet. You can also do exacta and trifecta bets.
There are several online racebooks that offer Android and Apple mobile betting apps. Try, for example, 4NJBets or BetAmerica apps. They both offer good odds and smooth user experience.
AmericanGambler.com has a special section dedicated to horse racing betting predictions. Here you can read free picks and make your own prediction on major races, including the Kentucky Derby.