The 147th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve is set to take place on May 1. Each day we move closer to the Derby, the standings and 2021 Kentucky Derby favorites become more clear.
These are heavily based on the contenders’ performances in Road to the Kentucky Derby races, which award the top four finishers qualifying points on a 10-4-2-1 scale.
2021 Kentucky Derby Favorites
Life Is Good (+600)
The current leader among 2021 Kentucky Derby favorites on the odds board is CHC INC. and WinStar Farm’s Life Is Good. The 3-year-old colt from Into Mischief currently holds the No. 14 spot on the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard with 10 total points.
Trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, Life Is Good is a perfect 2-for-2 in his career with earnings of $94,200. He has one start so far in 2021, which was an impressive victory in the Jan. 2 Sham Stakes (G3) at Santa Anita Race Track. In that narrow win, he demonstrated speed with a 112 Speed Figure.
Life Is Good is expected to run for Baffert in the San Felipe Stakes (G2) on March 6.
Essential Quality (+800)
Holding the No. 1 spot on the Derby leaderboard with 30 total points is Godolphin’s Essential Quality. The horse is the second choice based on odds. The 3-year-old Tapit colt is trained by Brad Cox.
His career record is a perfect 3-0-0 from three starts, and his purse earnings sit at an impressive $1,335,144. His most recent performance came back on Nov. 6. In that race, he scored the TVG Breeders’ Cup Juvenile presented by Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (G1) at Keeneland.
Essential Quality is set to return in the middle of February, either in the Risen Star Stakes (G2) at Fair Grounds on Feb. 13 or the Southwest Stakes (G3) at Oaklawn Park Feb 15.
Caddo River (+1500)
Shorter Stable’s Caddo River holds the No. 11 spot on the Derby leaderboard with 10 total points. Cox trains the 3-year-old Hard Spun colt as well.
Caddo River is 2-2-0 from four career starts, and his purse earnings sit at $166,092. He has one start this year, which was a Jan. 22 victory in the Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn Park. With that victory, he started receiving more attention as he secured a spot on the Derby trail.
Cypress Creek and Arnold Bennewith’s Keepmeinmind holds the second spot on the Kentucky Derby leaderboard with 18 total points. Roberino Diodoro trains the 3-year-old colt from Laoban.
Keepmeinmind has yet to run in 2021, and his career record is 1-2-1 from four starts. His earnings are at $394,320.
To close out his 2020 season, the colt scored the Nov. 28 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (G2) at Churchill Downs. Keepmeinmind is preparing to make his 2021 debut in the Southwest Stakes.
Medina Spirit (+2000)
Zedan Racing Stables’ Medina Spirit holds the fourth spot on the Derby leaderboard. He has received increased attention following his victory in the Jan. 30 Robert B. Lewis Stakes (G3) at Santa Anita.
The 3-year-old Protonico colt has a career record of 2-1-0 from three starts, and his earnings are at $105,200.
Make sure to check Horse Racing Tote for all the latest news on the 2021 Kentucky Derby favorites, Prep Races and odds; weekend graded stakes recap and results; as well as up to the minute reports on the Road to the Kentucky Derby.