The 133d Kentucky Derby
When: 6:04 p.m. tomorrow.
Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, Ky.
TV: NBC10. Distance: 1 1/4 miles.
Total purse: $2.21 million. Winner's share: $1.45 million.
Weather forecast: Temperatures in the upper 70s with a 30 percent chance of showers.
The 20-horse field: Listed in order of preference
|2 Curlin||R. Albarado||Steve Asmussen||7-2|
|No other member of this field has the star potential of this colt, who has captured his three starts by more than 28 lengths. His recordsetting 10 1/2-length romp in the Arkansas Derby was the strongest prep of the season. While a lack of experience could be a negative (no Derby winner since Apollo in 1882 was unraced as a juvenile), Derby "rules" are now broken regularly. Many handicappers were so disturbed by Barbaro's five-week absence before last year's Derby that he paid a whopping 6-1 in his 6 1/2-length score.|
|8 Hard Spun||M. Pino||Larry Jones||15-1|
|Locally owned winner of five of six starts, with lone defeat blamed on Oaklawn Park footing. All his victories have been achieved in decisive style and he has a regal pedigree, being a son of the great sire Danzig. His rapid five-furlong workout Monday could be perceived as a sign that he loves the Churchill Downs footing and is super-sharp after a six-week absence.|
|7 Street Sense||C. Borel||Carl Nafzger||4-1|
|Obviously loves the track, as witnessed by his 10-length victory in last season's Breedersf Cup Juvenile. Despite just two preps this season, he has been set up perfectly for this race by trainer Carl Nafzger, who saddled Unbridled to win this race in 1990. This colt has a powerful late kick and the running style that often produces the Derby winner.|
|20 Great Hunter||C. Nakatani||Doug O'Neill||15-1|
|This $30,000 Chester County-bred bargain was unlucky in the Blue Grass when knocked out sideways in the stretch and now must try to overcome the extreme outside post in this cavalry charge. But he was impressive in his season debut at Santa Anita and a troubled third behind Street Sense in the Juvenile.|
|12 Nobiz Like Shobiz||C. Velasquez||Barclay Tagg||8-1|
|Possibly no other colt was as awesome last year, but he does appear to have made much progress this season. He won the Wood Memorial when adding blinkers but edged a rival with weak credentials by less than a length. Trainer Barclay Tagg, who won the Derby with Funny Cide in 2003, has been sizzling lately in New York.|
|16 Circular Quay||J. Velazquez||Todd Pletcher||8-1|
|Todd Pletcher is a well-documented 0 for 14 in the Derby but seems to win every other stake each weekend. This Louisiana Derby winner rallies from left field, but his lone poor showing was because of a spill-marred race at the Fair Grounds. He may need a lively pace and a great trip through heavy traffic.|
|14 Scat Daddy||E. Prado||Todd Pletcher||10-1|
|Pletcher's second-best hope (he starts a record-tying five runners) is the best 3-year-old to come out of the Gulfstream meet this year and does just enough to win, as he did in the Florida Derby. The distance should suit him well, and Edgar Prado was aboard Barbaro in last year's Derby victory.|
|6 Cowtown Cat||F. Jara||Todd Pletcher||20-1|
|Could be the pacesetter in this bulky field and has made progress winning his last two starts in graded stakes, although in significantly weaker company.|
|18 Any Given Saturday||G. Gomez||Todd Pletcher||12-1|
|When you cost $1.1 million you're supposed to be good, and he pushed Street Sense to his limit in a narrow loss despite a wide rally in the Tampa Bay Derby. Although he lacked a late punch in the Wood, he has yet to run a bad race and gets one of the hottest jockeys in the nation in Garrett Gomez.|
|13 Sam P.||R. Dominguez||Todd Pletcher||20-1|
|Traveled heavily, he showed more speed than expected before tiring late in the Santa Anita Derby. But he beat Preakness aspirant Chelokee on the Churchill surface last year and will likely rate more kindly this time under Delaware Park's Ramon Dominguez.|
|15 Tiago||M. Smith||John Shirreffs||15-1|
|A half-brother to Giacomo, the 50-1 shocker in the 2005 Derby, this colt came from far back for an upset at the Santa Anita Derby. But the field appeared soft, and he will need the front-runners to collapse if he is to get up in time again.|
|17 Stormello||K. Desormeaux||William Currin||30-1|
|He yielded after setting the pace in the Florida Derby, and his connections (breeder, owner and trainer Bill Currin) said a change of running style might now be in order. Despite a brutal crosscountry trip, he was beaten by just a nose in the Fountain of Youth while making his first start of the season.|
|19 Dominican||R. Bejarano||Darin Miller||20-1|
|For this gelding, all races should be contested on the synthetic Polytrack surface. He is perfect on Poly and winless on conventional surfaces. He rallied from off the pace to win the Blue Grass despite a snail-like early pace.|
|3 Zanjero||S. Bridgmohan||Steve Asmussen||30-1|
|Shows a series of decent efforts and hails from the Asmussen barn, as does Curlin. For those who include science in their handicapping, the last two Derby winners (Giacomo and Barbaro) also had an O as the final letter in their names.|
|4 Storm in May||J. Leyva||William Kaplan||30-1|
|This distant runner-up to Curlin in the Arkansas Derby lost the vision in his right eye as a baby but has turned his $16,000 auction buy into a $459,430 bankroll.|
|5 Imawildandcrazyguy||M. Guidry||William Kaplan||50-1|
|Has a slow fuse but runs a good race on occasion. Gray horses (Giacomo, Silver Charm, Winning Colors, Gato del Sol) have fared well in the Derby.|
|9 Liquidity||D. Flores||Doug O'Neill||30-1|
|Trainer Doug O'Neill appeared to hold a strong Derby hand early in the year, but Notional was injured and this colt has been on the decline. He also conditions Great Hunter and will need some racing luck.|
|1 Sedgefield||J. Leparoux||Darrin Miller||50-1|
|Those who like the turf-to-dirt angle can give a long-shot nod to this son of Smart Strike (same sire as Curlin). Jockey Julien Leparoux has been winning with amazing frequency at Keeneland and Churchill.|
|10 Teuflesberg||S. Elliott||Jamie Sanders||30-1|
|Set a crawling pace and held on nicely in the bizarre Blue Grass. He should be a factor in the early going and will likely stop, but what do you want from a colt who cost only $9,000 as a yearling?|
|11 Bwana Bull||J. Castellano||J. Hollendorfer||50-1|
|Successful in the quality-starved Bay Area, he raced an even fifth in the Santa Anita Derby. His sire, Holy Bull, finished 12th as the favorite in the 1994 Derby.|
Derby coverage: http://go.philly.com/derby.