Unbeaten Nyquist Strengthens Position Atop Kentucky Derby Odds

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There was a shakeup atop the odds to win the Kentucky Derby at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com following Nyquist’s victory at the $1 million Florida Derby, which extended the three-year-old colt’s perfect record on the track and made him the +300 betting favorite.

Nyquist’s dominating victory by three lengths in the 1 1/8-mile Florida Derby marks his seventh straight win and further separates him from early favorite Mohaymen, who also entered the race undefeated but with a fourth-place finish on the day has stalled at +800 on the Kentucky Derby odds.

The Florida Derby had been billed as a showdown between the top two betting choices in the Run for the Roses, and looked to deliver before Nyquist pulled away from the pack in the final turn, paying off as a 6/5 wager.

With his poor showing at Gulfstream, Mohaymen dropped to third on the odds table ahead of the May 7 running of the 2016 Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, looking up at Exaggerator, who has vaulted to +750 following a spectacular win at last week’s Santa Anita Derby.

Exaggerator trailed early leader Danzing Candy by 10 lengths before mounting an impressive stretch run on a sloppy Santa Anita Park track to claim victory by 6 1/4 lengths and boost  Kentucky Derby odds that had previously been pegged at a middling +2500

Danzing Candy’s fourth-place finish at Santa Anita ended a three-race win streak and negatively impacted the colt’s betting stock, plummeting from +1200 to +2200 in wagering at Kentucky Derby betting sites.

Brody’s Cause also staged an impressive come-from-behind performance last weekend at Keeneland, claiming a 1 3/4-length win to pay off at 4/1 odds at the Blue Grass Stakes, and now joins the Kentucky Derby favorites at +950 after previously lagging at +1800.

Gun Runner has been idle since posting a second straight win at last month’s Louisiana Derby but has seen his odds climb slightly to +1200, ahead of Destin at +1400, and Mor Spirit, who sits at +1500 following a pair of second-place finishes at the Santa Anita Derby and San Felipe Stakes.

Cupid, the winner at last month’s Rebel Stakes, is also on the rise on the Kentucky Derby betting lines, climbing from +2000 to +1600, and could get a further boost with a victory at this weekend’s Arkansas Derby.

The three-year-old sits alongside Mo Tom, who is coming off a disappointing fourth-place finish at the Louisiana Derby and has just two victories in his last five races.

Arabian Knight off Kentucky Derby trail; will return later

Matt Stone/Courier Journal/USA TODAY NETWORK

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Arabian Knight is off the Kentucky Derby trail.

Wagering has been suspended on the 3-year-old colt for the Derby’s future wager after owner Amr Zedan announced the decision. Arabian Knight was the second choice on the morning line behind favorite Forte for the May 6 race.

“Trainer Tim Yakteen wasn’t happy with his last work & we feel it’s in Arabian Knight’s best interest not to rush & allow him more time to develop,” Zedan tweeted. “We know he’s a superior talent & our plan is to point him toward a summer and fall campaign.”

Purchased for $2.3 million as a 2-year-old, Arabian Knight won his debut by 7 1/4 lengths at Keeneland last November. He made his 3-year-old debut in the Southwest at Oaklawn in January and won by 5 1/2 lengths.

Arabian Knight had his third workout at Santa Anita.

Tapit Trice wins Tampa Bay Derby, earns Kentucky Derby points

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TAMPA, Fla. — Tapit Trice rallied from last to win the $360,000 Tampa Bay Derby by two lengths and earn qualifying points for the Kentucky Derby.

Ridden by Luis Saez, Tapit Trice ran 1 1/16 miles 1:43.37. The 1-2 favorite in the field of 12 paid $3 to win. The 3-year-old colt earned 50 qualifying points, which places him in the 20-horse field for the Kentucky Derby on May 6.

Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher extended his record for most wins in the Grade 3 race to six. He already has the early Kentucky Derby favorite in Forte, who won the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream last weekend.

Classic Car Wash was second and Classic Legacy was another 1 1/4 lengths back in third.

Tapit Trice was making his stakes debut after winning two of three starts.

“Once he got clear down the lane, he really extended himself,” Pletcher said. ”I loved the way he finished up. He relished the two turns, and the longer he goes, the better he’ll get.”