Thursday, June 1, 2023

2022 Kentucky Derby odds, best predictions: Expert who called last year’s Derby Day winner lists picks

After the post position draw, Zandon vaulted up the 2022 Kentucky Derby odds thanks to his favorable No. 10 post and strong prep season. He finished in the money in all four of his races, winning two of them including the Blue Grass Stakes. However, historians will point out that the Blue Grass hasn’t been a springboard to success in the Kentucky Derby. Ahead of the Kentucky Derby 2022, it’s been 31 years since a horse won at the Blue Grass Stakes and went on to win at Churchill Downs. Zandon will look to rewrite history on Saturday as the 3-1 Kentucky Derby favorite. He is one of three horses who competed at the Blue Grass and are in the 2022 Kentucky Derby field, and it’s been 15 years since any Blue Grass horse won the Run for the Roses. Others attempting to end that drought include Smile Happy, listed at 20-1 in the Kentucky Derby 2022 odds, and Ethereal Road (30-1). The 2022 Kentucky Derby post time is 6:57 p.m. ET. With the Kentucky Derby 2022 featuring the largest field in North American racing, you’ll want to see what astute racing reporter and analyst Michelle Yu has to say before making any 2022 Kentucky Derby picks.

Few people in racing are as connected as Yu. An on-air host and reporter who has provided racing analysis for TVG, HRTV and the Breeders’ Cup, Yu has spent a lifetime in racing. Prior to her television career, she worked for trainers Steve Asmussen and Ron Moquett. She also is married to Santa Anita-based trainer Ryan Hanson.

She also has tremendous handicapping chops. In the 2011 Kentucky Derby, she correctly tabbed Animal Kingdom to win at a hefty 21-1. In the 2017 Breeders’ Cup, she nailed 11-1 long shot Wuheida to win the Filly and Mare Turf. Last year in a wide-open Kentucky Derby, she gave out Medina Spirit, who crossed the finish line first, as the winner at 12-1.

Since joining SportsLine in November, her picks have cashed in six of 12 races, including the exacta in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Anyone who has followed her is way up.

Now, Yu has handicapped the 2022 Kentucky Derby odds, made her picks and constructed her bets. Click here to see them.

Top 2022 Kentucky Derby predictions

One surprise: Yu is tossing Messier, even though he is one of the top 2022 Kentucky Derby favorites at 8-1. In fact, Yu says Messier barely cracks the top 10. Messier was trained by Bob Baffert until the legendary trainer was suspended by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Then, the colt was transferred by his ownership group to Tim Yakteen’s stables.

The longtime Baffert assistant will make his Kentucky Derby debut as a head trainer with Messier and Taiba, who was also a Baffert trainee that was transferred last month to Yakteen. While Messier has proven speed and hasn’t finished worse than second in six career starts, he has been beaten twice as the favorite and is coming off a Santa Anita Derby run where he was in perfect position only to be run down at the line by Taiba. That’s a big reason why Yu will avoid Messier in her 2022 Kentucky Derby bets.

Instead, Yu is high on Cyberknife, even though he is a 20-1 long shot. The trainer-jockey pairing of Brad Cox and Florent Geroux teamed up to win last year’s Kentucky Derby with Mandaloun and the two are back together with Cyberknife. Coming off a win in the Arkansas Derby, Cyberknife is the son of Gun Runner, who won multiple Grade 1 races and finished third in the 2016 Kentucky Derby.

The Arkansas Derby was Cyberknife’s second win in a row and those came after a disappointing sixth-place at the Lecomte Stakes. But Cox made a subtle change that has led to two straight wins. “Owner Al Gold told me trainer Brad Cox changed Cyberknife’s bit for the last two races, and the switch has obviously helped,” Yu told SportsLine.

How to make 2022 Kentucky Derby picks, bets

Yu’s top pick is an overlooked horse who has the “speed to press and has top connections.” Yu is also high on an enormous long shot who is her “must-use-in-exotics horse.” She said this colt “has shown race after race that he belongs in the Kentucky Derby.” She is including these horses in her 2022 Kentucky Derby bets, and so should you. She’s sharing which horses to back only at SportsLine.

So who wins the 2022 Kentucky Derby? Which enormous long shot is a must-back? Check out the Kentucky Derby odds 2022 below, then visit SportsLine to see Yu’s picks for the Kentucky Derby, all from the expert who nailed last year’s winner on Derby Day.

2022 Kentucky Derby odds, horses, post positions

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