Personally, I am not a huge fan of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager. I don't like the fact that they only allow 23 betting interests (plus the mutuel field) when it would seem fairly easy to expand the pool to 40 or 50 choices.
But more to the point, I am someone who likes to get huge odds when I place a future bet, and that is why I always find a way to get to Vegas (or have someone go for me) in November or December to put some money down on promising contenders while the gettin' is still good.
As I've written before, I placed three bets through a friend in November: Interactif and Middle of the Nite both at 225-1 (neither one is on Pool 1 of the official Kentucky Derby Future Wager and therefore are part of the field that is currently 5-2), and Buddy's Saint at 40-1 (who is currently the second choice behind Lookin At Lucky at 10-1). Now you see why I make the bets in November. That's when you get the really big prices.
Despite the aforementioned, in taking a look at the current pool (which ends on Sunday at 6 p.m. EST) I do think there are a few horses worth a shot at big odds. Depending on what the odds on the following horses look like on Sunday afternoon, these are the ones I will consider playing:
Jackson Bend: He is currently at 35-1 (up from a 12-1 morning line) and I think that is very generous. He has already beaten some very good horses as a 2YO in the Florida Stallion Stakes Series and his Holy Bull effort was superb. There is no reason to think he won't keep getting better and he's in the barn of a guy who knows how to win the Big Dance.
Maximus Ruler: I've written about this colt before. He is an excellent worker and I thought his Lecomte effort was very underrated. People seemed to get all hopped up about the winner, Ron the Greek, but it was Maximus Ruler who ran the better race in my opinion. He took all the heat through a grueling half-mile and still had something left at the end. If he gets a better draw and better set up in the Risen Star he will be tough to beat. Folks, he is currently at 93-1. He's worth a few bucks.
Dublin: He is currently at 21-1, which at first glance isn't all that great, but if he wins the Southwest on Monday (a day after the pool closes) it will be a steal. The horse already has enough graded earnings to make the dance thanks to his Hopeful win and all indications are that he has improved since his surgery. He is a big horse with good tactical speed. And I don't need to remind you of his trainer's success in the Derby. Might be a good time to get on him now before his odds plummet. Or, you could hope he loses the Southwest and try to get better odds in Pool 2. Tough call.
Drosselmeyer: I was at Gulfstream for his allowance win on Jan. 13 and let me tell you, I was impressed. He's a colt who looks like he'll have absolutely no problem with the distance based on his pedigree and what he has done so far. Remember, he has already gone two turns four times. And he seemed to really turn a corner once he was switched to dirt. I know WinStar is loaded this year, but when all is said and done he may be the best of the lot. He's currently at 28-1. Might be worth getting him while he's still a price.