Blue Grass (G1) winner Zandon has been made the 3-1 morning-line favorite for the 2022 Kentucky Derby (G1) after getting gate 10 at the Monday post draw.
Connections of the Chad Brown trainee had to wait until the second half of the draw to discover they had picked up a barrier in the middle of the field, and this aided by some impressive training efforts convinced morning-line oddsmaker Mike Battaglia to put him at the top of the odds list.
Gate 10 is expected to suit Zandon, who is likely to find a spot midfield on the outside of horses for jockey Flavien Prat.
Louisiana Derby (G2) winner Epicenter, who many expected to be favorite, has been rated as 7-2 second pick. He was one of the last horses drawn for the Derby and will start from gate 3. It could potentially be hazardous but he has shown plenty of early speed and Joel Rosario should be able to find a spot on or near the early pace.
The only other horse rated in single-figure odds is Santa Anita Derby (G1) runner-up Messier, who will start from gate 6. He will be expected to get out of the gates quickly and be on or near the lead.
Of the other potential speed horses, UAE Derby (G2) runner-up Summer Is Tomorrow (30-1) drew immediately outside Epicenter in gate 4, Tampa Bay Derby (G2) winner Classic Causeway (30-1) gate 17, and Zozos (20-1) will start from gate 19.
Horses expected to stalk the pace include Florida Derby winner White Abarrio (10-1) and runner-up Simplification (20-1), who start from gate 15 and 13, respectively, UAE Derby (G2) winner Crown Pride (20-1), who gets a nice spot at gate 7, and the inexperienced Santa Anita Derby winner Taiba (12-1), who should benefit from gate 12.
The most highly-regarded of the potential closers, Mo Donegal, is rated a 10-1 chance after drawing the rail post, meaning he’s likely to be midfield on the fence – similar to where he was placed when winning the Wood Memorial (G2) at his last start.
Longtime Kentucky Derby Future Wager favorite Smile Happy (20-1), who might also be midfield or worse, will probably benefit from barrier 5, from where the 10-time leading Churchill Downs rider Corey Lanerie will probably look for a rail-hugging run.
|Post Position||Horse||Jockey||ML Odds|
|1||Mo Donegal||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||10-1|
|2||Happy Jack||Rafael Bejarano||30-1|
|4||Summer is Tomorrow||Mikael Barzalona||30-1|
|5||Smile Happy||Corey Lanerie||20-1|
|7||Crown Pride||Christophe Limarie||20-1|
|8||Charge It||Manny Saez||20-1|
|9||Tiz the Bomb||Brian Hernandez, Jr.||30-1|
|11||Pioneer of Medina||Joe Bravo||30-1|
|14||Barber Road||Reyliu Gutierrez||30-1|
|15||White Abarrio||Tyler Gaffalione||10-1|
|17||Classic Causeway||Julien Leparoux||30-1|
|18||Tawny Port||Ricardo Santana||30-1|
|20||Ethereal Road||Luis Contreras||30-1|
|AE||Rich Strike||Sonny Leaone||30-1|
|AE||Rattle N Roll||James Graham||30-1|