NY Times Kentucky Derby Picks 2023 | Kentucky Derby Picks 2023

NY Times Kentucky Derby Picks 2023 | Kentucky Derby Picks 2023

NY Times horse racing analysts Joe Drape and Melissa Hoppert have released their picks and predictions for the 2023 Kentucky Derby. This is the 149th running of the first leg of the American Triple Crown. The 1 1/4-mile horse race has been held at Churchill Downs since its inception in 1875.

The 20-horse field Kentucky Derby will be broadcasted by NBC with coverage beginning as early as 10:30 am ET this Saturday on USA Network. Pre-race activities start at 12:30 pm ET. Another way to watch this event is with a live stream through NBCSports.com. Post time for the 2023 Kentucky Derby is 6:57 p.m. ET.

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NY Times Kentucky Derby Picks and Predictions 2023

NY Times senior writer Joe Drape is most intrigued by Verifying (+1200). Drape has his favorite horse winning over Reincarnate and Forte (+325), the odds-on favorite to win the first leg of the Triple Crown.

Meanwhile, NY Times editor Melissa Hoppert has Tapit Trice (+600) finishing ahead of Forte and Angel of Empire (+800). Over the past 24 hours, three horses have been scratched from the race: Practical Move, Skinner, and Lord Miles.

Verifying (+1200)

Joe Drape has Verifying winning the 2023 Kentucky Derby. “He is inconsistent, alternating brilliant races with clunkers. If he shows up with his best, the colt has a chance,” wrote the NY Times senior writer. Verifying has never won a Grade 1 race. He has raced at Belmont at Aqueduct, Keeneland, Oaklawn Park, and Saratoga. His wins include victories at Oaklawn Park and Saratoga. His best Beyer Speed Figure (BSF) was 97.

Verifying recorded a 93 BSF at the 2023 Blue Grass Stakes (Grade 1). He finished second behind Tapit Trice. “This speedy son of the 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify lost by a neck in the Blue Grass Stakes last month, and he’ll have Gaffalione, who owns nine Churchill riding titles, on his back,” Melissa Hoppert added. More Kentucky Derby picks and predictions are on the main page.

Tapit Trice (+600)

“All this lumbering sort of colt does is win, even when he misses the start as he did in the Tampa Bay Derby or bounces off other horses as he did in the Blue Grass,” Drape said. Always Dreaming (2017) was the last horse to win the Derby from the No. 5 post position. Tapit Trice also won the 2023 Blue Grass Stakes (Grade 1).

“This gray son of the prolific sire Tapit has won four straight races,” Hoppert mentioned. “That run includes the Blue Grass, where his come-from-behind running style was on full display. He has looked like a million bucks in the morning, and good thing, too, because his owners shelled out $1.3 million for him.”

Forte (+325)

“He’s six of seven and was the 2-year-old champion. This colt is the deserving favorite, and if he gets past Saturday, we’ll probably see him at Belmont Park trying to complete a Triple Crown sweep,” Joe Drape wrote. The 3-year-old colt was sired by Candy Ride out of the Bernardini mare Eblouissante.

Forte’s best BSF was 100. His stakes wins include victories in the 2023 Florida Derby (Grade 1), 2023 Fountain of Youth (Grade 2), and the 2022 Hopeful (Grade 1). At the Florida Derby last month, Forte outran Mage and Cyclone Mischief, who replaced Practical Move for Saturday’s race.

“He’s won five straight and has done absolutely nothing wrong, except winning the Florida Derby by only a length and giving bettors an excuse to seek value elsewhere,” Melissa Hoppert said. For other NY Times Kentucky Derby picks, go to the main page.

Kentucky Derby Betting Guides 2023

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