When it comes to the Kentucky Derby, bet against the favorite at your own peril.

Since the current points system used to determine Derby qualifiers started in 2013, post-time favorites have landed in the superfecta payout all nine years – six wins, one second and two fourths.

Looking at this Saturday’s Derby, morning-line favorite Zandon (3-1 odds) and second-choice Epicenter (7-2 odds) figure to battle for status as post-time favorite once wagering begins Friday morning.

Kentucky Derby 2022:Why your horse can – and can’t – win Saturday’s race 

Assuming Blue Grass winner Zandon maintains his status as favorite, here are four horses who can beat him and should be a part of every superfecta wager:


Many thought the Louisiana Derby winner would be the Kentucky Derby favorite, but he landed just behind Zandon in the morning line.

Was trainer Steve Asmussen surprised?

“I’ll be surprised if he gets beat,” Asmussen said. “The rest I have nothing to do with.”

More on Epicenter:Check out the farm in Bowling Green where he was bred 

A bay son of Not This Time, Epicenter has seen his Beyer Speed Figures go up in every race of his career, peaking with a 102 in the Louisiana Derby. He’s won four of his past five races, losing only by a head to Call Me Midnight in the Grade 3 Lecomte. In the only meeting between the two – the Grade 2 Risen Star on Feb. 19 – Epicenter beat third-place Zandon by 3 ¼ lengths.

OPINION: Churchill Downs tries to erase Bob Baffert, but he’ll have his say in Kentucky Derby

MORE: How a 35-year-old trainer from Barbados has a Kentucky Derby win ‘within reach’ — and much more

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Kentucky Derby hopeful Epicenter is bathed on the backside at Churchill Downs. May 3, 2022

Asmussen is 0 for 23 in the Derby, but Epicenter may be his best shot ever.

“Epicenter is very confident right now, training really well,” Asmussen said. “We’ll be very anxious. Obviously feel that this is a wonderful chance to win the Derby.”


Bob Baffert may not be at the Derby this year, but two of his former horses – now in the hands of Tim Yakteen – have big shots.

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