You might expect a sportsbook aficionado like Young Sam Rothstein to get excited about the 137th running of the Kentcky Derby, but you'd be wrong. Young Sam doesn't put down money when it comes to the sport of kings. There are too many variables to consider and I don't trust four legged creatures with my money. Certainly thoroughbreds can make people rich and if you follow the pedigree and the results over time you can get a clear picture of what the horse is capable of. If you factor in great trainers with gobs of cash at their disposal (Bob Baffert, Nick Zito, D Wayne Lukas) the equation gets even simpler. Still I don't trust my four legged friends. My conscience won't allow me to lose money on a sport where the participants can't speak so I stick to sports where human performance determines the outcome. That being said I do know who is going to win the Kentucky Derby this year, Twice The Appeal ridden by Calvin Borel.
Calvin Borel is the Phil Jackson of horse racing. He's rode 3 of the last 4 Kentucky Derby winners and in 2009 switched over to Rachel Alexandra and won the Preakness as well. He has a reputation for getting the most out of his horses and playing to their strengths. He knows if the horse he's riding likes to run from the front, on the rail, from the back, or in the middle of the pack. Calvin's instincts about a horse carry him to the winners circle quite often and he knows the Churchill Downs race track as well as anyone. He's a tough guy to bet against (If I was betting of course).
20-1 for Twice the Appeal is not great odds and the betting public has already established Dialed In as the favorite after Uncle Moe was scratched. The public is underestimating the importance of a good jockey with tons of experience. In the end Calvin Borel will ride away victorious and accept another bouquet of roses. Mark my words.