2022 Kentucky Derby Picks, Predictions & Betting Guide

Johnny Covers gives you his complete betting guide for Saturday's Kentucky Derby. If you're looking for a Kentucky Derby betting guide, you've come to the right place.
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2022 Kentucky Derby Picks, Predictions & Betting Guide

The coverage for the 148th edition of the Kentucky Derby has already begun, as we’re now just hours away from the mint juleps being poured and tickets being cashed. This year, the 20-horse field was drawn earlier than most years (Monday), as 3/1 favorite Zandon snagged the coveted #10 gate. 

In what will be the first leg of this year’s Triple Crown, there is no clear-cut dominant favorite, with plenty of horses in the middle tiers for bettors to get down on. With fans back in attendance following a limited 2021, 160,000+ fans will be on hand to see all the action, only adding to the excitement. 

With no shortage of analysis and opinions in the build-up to the 6:57 PM EST start, let's take a closer look at a few horses that have some value remaining.

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Kentucky Derby Picks: The Worthy Favorite

Zandon (3/1)

One of the best horses in the field paired with a proven Derby winner in jockey Flavian Prat, Zandon’s odds were boosted even lower when he drew the coveted 10th gate. Producing the second-most Derby winners since 1930, the #10 spot often puts its horse in the perfect position to turn on the gets down the stretch without being pigeon-holed on either side of the track. 

With great closing speed and the experience to not chase the pack early on, Zandon also has the added bonus of having won the Toyota Blue Grass in Kentucky earlier this year. If Zandon can get a clean start out of the gates, he should find himself in contention in the final paces of this race.

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Kentucky Derby Picks: The Alternative

Mo Donegal (10/1)

One of the most recognizable names in horse racing, Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher, trains Mo Donegal and will be looking to make him his third Derby winner. Finishing top-3 in all five of his starts thus far, including three outright wins, he just might do it. 

If Mo Donegal didn’t draw the dreaded #1 gate, his odds would likely be much better, but his slower starts paired with gate positioning create value here in my eyes. With the longer track, his finishing speed should be enough to overcome a mediocre start out of the gates, and as long as jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. can avoid one, this horse has what it takes to find the winner circle. 

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Kentucky Derby Picks: The Upset Contender

Cyberknife (20/1)

With such a lack of experience in the field compared to most years, including seven horses that have four or few starts, Cyberknife has value to be in contention at these long odds. Ridden by Florent Geroux, a jockey with 1750+ career wins, Geroux is also now in the history books as the 2021 Kentucky Derby winner (Mandaloun) after the disqualification of Medina Spirit following a positive betamethasone test post-race.

With a knack for trailing early before turning it on late, in addition to a recent win (by three lengths) at a track just ¼ mile less than Churchill early this year, Cyberknife should be in the mix Saturday.

How To Bet Your Kentucky Derby Picks

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Johnny has been covering the sports betting markets and handicapping games for the better part of the past decade. Along the way, he has written for publications such as All-In Magazine, Blitz Predict, FantasyPros, Betting Pros, Sportsbook Review, and most recently, OddsChecker. In addition to giving out picks on Twitter, Johnny is the host of the podcast The Daily Sports Bet -- a 10 minute or less listen with actionable insights and no fluff or BS. Starting the podcast in June, he closed out 2021 up 26 units with a winning percentage of 55%.

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