Kentucky Derby Betting in the US

In the US, no race captures the imagination quite like the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. This page will focus on Kentucky Derby betting in the US and it is well worth reading for bettors of all levels.

Our experts will help you find a quality Kentucky Derby betting site you can trust and that’s not all. You’ll learn how to bet on the Kentucky Derby, the best wagers to place on the race and we might even help you find the winner with our betting strategy tips!

Best Kentucky Derby Betting Sites in 2022

# Sportsbook Bonus
1.
FanDuel Racing

BONUS

Matched deposit up to $50

FanDuel Racing
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
PayNearMe
Bank Transfer
Array
2.
TwinSpires

BONUS

$200 free bet

TwinSpires
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
American Express
PayNearMe
Array
3.
TVG

BONUS

Up to $200 risk free bet

TVG
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
PayNearMe
Bank Transfer
Array
4.
Xpressbet

BONUS

Bet $500 and get $100 bonus

Xpressbet
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
PayNearMe
American Express
Array

Top Kentucky Derby Betting Site by Category

Horse racing bettors look for different things when choosing a Kentucky Derby betting site. For example, some punters are all about securing the best odds possible, while others place more importance on getting regular bonuses.

We have done all the arduous work for you and in the table below you can see exactly which betting sites are best for odds, bonuses, mobile apps, range of bets and live streaming.

Top Kentucky Derby racebooks by category
Best odds

TwinSpires

Best bonuses

Xpressbet

Best app

FanDuel Racing 

Best range of racing bets

FanDuel Racing 

Best for live streaming

TVG

Kentucky Derby Betting Sites to Avoid

When you are signing up with any online site, not just betting sites, you need to know they can be trusted. There are some Kentucky Derby betting sites to avoid but you can rest assured that every betting operator listed on our site is 100% legal and above board.

How to Pick the Best Kentucky Derby Betting Sites

So, what should you look out for when you are searching for the best Kentucky Derby betting site to suit your needs? Well, there are quite a few things that give a reliable indication as to whether a betting site is worth a second look.

The main questions that need to be asked include: Is it fully licensed? Does it have a top quality mobile app? How good are the odds and what range of bet types are available? It is also particularly important to check whether your preferred payment method is accepted.

  • Licenses

    Licenses are granted by individual states. If you cannot find a license, steer clear.

  • Mobile apps

    Check is the mobile app fully functional. Is there an app tailor made for your device?

  • Selection of racing bets

    Make sure that your favorite bet types are accepted. Some sites have more markets than others.

  • Odds

    Odds can vary quite a lot between different betting sites for the Kentucky Derby. Shop around to make sure you get the best value.

  • Kentucky Derby betting bonuses

    Keep your eyes peeled for Kentucky Derby betting bonuses and promotions. Lots of betting sites will have offers on raceday.

  • Payment methods

    You won’t be able to make a deposit unless your preferred payment method is accepted. Check to see if fees apply to deposits/withdrawals too.

How to Bet on the Kentucky Derby

If you are wondering how to bet on the Kentucky Derby, don’t fret. It really is as easy as pie and reading the info on this page is a step in the right direction. To begin with, you’ll need to choose a Kentucky Derby betting site and luckily, we know all the best ones.

Once you find the site that suits you best, just follow the steps below to get those Kentucky Derby bets on.

1
Find a legal US Kentucky Derby betting site

Read our honest betting site reviews and choose the one you like best.

2
register account
Register a betting account

Click on one of our links to go to the site and follow the instructions to register.

3
deposit
Make your first deposit

Choose a payment method and make a deposit (watch out for first deposit bonuses).

4
pick ketnucky derby
Pick the Kentucky Derby from the list of available events

Locate the Kentucky Derby betting page.

5
choose a bet
Choose a Kentucky betting market

Find the market or wager type you want.

6
enter stake
Enter your stake

In the bet slip provided enter your stake.

7
Confirm the bet

Hit the place bet button and wait for your winnings!

Types of Horse Racing Bets

So, what types of horse racing bets can you place on the Kentucky Derby? Well, there are lots of different ways to wager on the race. Some bettors prefer to keep it simple with show, place or win singles.

Others like to try and win big for small stakes with exotic Kentucky Derby bets like trifectas or exactas. We look at the different Kentucky Derby bets in greater detail below.

  • Win/place/show

    The simplest types of Kentucky Derby wager. A win bet is self-explanatory – the horse you back has to finish 1st. Place and show bets are wagers placed on horses to finish in the first two or three respectively.

  • Exacta

    Finding the winner of the Kentucky Derby is tough. Finding the 1-2 in the ‘exact’ order is even tougher and that is what an exacta requires. It is a single bet.

  • Quinella

    Similar to the exacta but you have to name the 1-2 in any order. Consists of 2x separate bets. So, a $5 Kentucky Derby Quinella will cost $10.

  • Trifecta

    A Kentucky Derby trifecta would be nice to win. This is a wager on the 1-2-3 in the correct order. In 2019 a winning $2 trifecta paid over $11,000!

  • Superfecta

    The Superfecta is the same as the trifecta except you must predict the 1-2-3-4. Humongous payouts are common. In 2019 the Kentucky Derby Superfecta returned over $50,000 for a $2 stake.

  • Box bet

    A box bet is when all selections in your trifecta/superfecta can finish in any combination. However, this wager consists of multiple bets. A $2 Kentucky Derby box trifecta will cost $12 to place (6x bets).

  • Wheel betting

    Another variation on the above wagers. You pick the horse that you think will win and then pick a number of horses to finish 2nd (wheel exacta) or 2nd and 3rd (wheel trifecta).

Kentucky Derby Betting Bonuses and Promotions

Everybody loves getting a little something for nothing and US betting sites always have Kentucky Derby betting bonuses and promotions. Some sites may have bonus bets, others have enhanced odds and you might even find promotions that enable you to boost your Kentucky Derby winnings.

Some betting sites have new customer offers where they’ll give you a free Kentucky Derby bet for signing up. You might also find ‘Cash Back for 2nd or 3rd’ or other similar money back specials.

Exacta/Trifecta insurance offers are common too, so no matter what way you wager, there should be a bonus you can take advantage of.

# Sportsbook Bonus
1.
FanDuel Racing

BONUS

Matched deposit up to $50

FanDuel Racing
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
PayNearMe
Bank Transfer
Array
2.
TVG

BONUS

Up to $200 risk free bet

TVG
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
PayNearMe
Bank Transfer
Array
3.
TwinSpires

BONUS

$200 free bet

TwinSpires
PayPal
VISA
Mastercard
American Express
PayNearMe
Array

Kentucky Derby Betting Apps

We are living in the age of the smartphone and betting sites are well aware of the importance of facilitating mobile betting via their smartphone betting apps. This means bettors can place their Kentucky Derby bets no matter where they are, as long as there is an internet connection.

The best Kentucky Derby Betting apps have all the same markets and bonuses that you’ll find on desktop. Some even have live Kentucky Derby streaming so you can watch the race on your mobile device.

Deposits and withdrawals can be made via mobile too and thankfully, the vast majority of betting sites have tailor made apps for iOS and Android devices. Our top rated Kentucky Derby betting apps are listed below:

Best Kentucky Derby betting apps
Best for Android

TwinSpires

Best for iOS

TVG

Best bonuses

Xpressbet

Easiest to use

FanDuel Racing

Highest odds

TVG

Kentucky Derby Betting Tips and Strategy

First of all, always remember there is no such thing as a certainty in horse racing. You never know what might happen on raceday and sometimes, it feels like anything that can go wrong, does go wrong.

However, our horse racing experts have compiled a list of five key Kentucky Derby betting strategies that will almost certainly increase your chances of finding the big race winner. Check them out below:

  1. Track Suitability – Try to find horses that have previous experience either at Churchill Downs or on a similar surface. If rain is forecast focus on horses that are proven on sloppy surfaces.
  2. Trainer Form – Check to see what trainers are in form and what trainers are not. For example, Bob Baffert is usually a handler who gets his horses to peak for the Kentucky Derby so his entries are always worth a second look.
  3. Watch Race Replays – Kentucky Derby Trials are run around the world from September onwards. Focus on watching replays of the US trials (Breeders’ Cup, Kentucky Jockey Club, Florida Derby etc.) as foreign trained horses have a dreadful record in this race.
  4. Horse Form – Horses are animals that gain confidence from winning races. It is always positive, especially in races of this stature, if the horse you like has won last time out. Even better, If you can spot a horse that was unlucky not to win on his/her last run you will get bigger odds.
  5. Jockey Quality – There is a huge amount of pressure on the Kentucky Derby jockeys. They need to have ice in their veins on raceday and it is best to back jockeys who have previous experience of riding in this massive race.

Is Kentucky Derby Betting Legal in the US?

Yes, Kentucky Derby Betting is legal now in the majority of US States. Since online horse racing betting was legalized federally, more and more states have relaxed restrictions and bettors can bet on all the best horse races, including the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and even the UK Grand National.

However, unfortunately, there are still a few states where no online betting activity of any kind is permitted. Below is a table outlining the states where you can legally place a Kentucky Derby bet.

AlabamaIdahoMarylandNew YorkTennessee
ArizonaIllinoisMassachusettsNorth DakotaVermont
ArkansasIndianaMichiganOhioVirginia
CaliforniaIowaMinnesotaOklahomaWashington
ColoradoKansasMontanaOregonWest Virginia
ConnecticutKentuckyNew HampshirePennsylvaniaWisconsin
DelawareLouisianaNew JerseyRhode IslandWyoming
FloridaMaineNew MexicoSouth Dakota 

Kentucky Derby History and Records

The Kentucky Derby is a race that Americans hold close to their heart. It is part of the ‘Triple Crown’ along with the Belmont Stakes and Preakness Stakes. It is an absolutely huge event and many European horses fail to handle all the pre-race traditions like the parade and the dirt track is usually an issue for them too. If you want to learn more about all the other stuff surrounding this famous race, take a look at the official Kentucky Derby web page.

The race is restricted to 3yo colts, geldings and fillies. Fillies carry 2kg less than the boys but that hasn’t really helped them compete. Only three fillies have ever won the Kentucky Derby – Regret in 1915, Genuine Risk in 1980 and Winning Colors in 1988. The biggest Kentucky Derby shock came in 1913 when 91/1 longshot Donerail shocked the world.

The leading Kentucky Derby trainer is Bob Baffert. He has six wins but he would have seven only for Medina Spirit’s disqualification in 2021 for a failed drug test. Eddie Arcaro and Bill Hartack are the most successful Kentucky Derby jockeys with five wins each.

Kentucky Derby race info
kentucky derby race info
Distance1 miles 2 furlongs
Surface Dirt
VenueChurchill Downs
TypeFlat Thoroughbred
Qualifying horses 3 year old colts, geldings and fillies
Established in1875
LocationLouisville, Kentucky
Best betting siteTwinSpires 

Previous Winners

YearWinnerOdds
2021Mandaloun269/10
2020Authentic84/10
2019Country House65/1
2018Justify29/10
2017Always Dreaming9/2
2016Nyquist2/1
2015American Pharoah5/2
2014California Chrome5/2
2013Orb5/1
2012I’ll Have Another15/1
2011Animal Kingdom20/1
2010Super Saver8/1
2009Mind That Bird50/1
2008Big Brown12/5
2007Street Sense49/10

Conclusion

For those who want to start betting on horses, the Kentucky Derby is the perfect race. As you can see, there are a few excellent Kentucky Derby betting sites to pick from and there are plenty of bonuses and promotions to take advantage of too.

Long shots often run well and it is possible to win enormous amounts of cash if you manage to nail a Kentucky Derby trifecta or superfecta. All the betting sites we list on this page are legal and trustworthy so if you want to bet on The Run For The Roses, sign up, register, make a deposit and back the winner!

FAQs

It’s simple, just select one of the top Kentucky Derby betting sites mentioned on this page and sign up. Make a deposit, find the market/wager type required and then place your bet on the Kentucky Derby.

At the present moment betting on the Kentucky Derby is legal in more than 40 US States. Each individual state has their own regulations and there are still a couple that have yet to legalize online horse racing betting.

It isn’t easy naming just one Kentucky Derby betting site as the best. Each of the sites we mention have their strengths and weaknesses. Overall, TwinSpires and TVG are the two standouts but BetAmerica, FanDuel Horse Racing and Xpressbet are worth checking out too.

The best Kentucky Derby betting app is probably BetAmerica’s offering. The app is well designed, it works smoothly and not only can you bet on the big race, live horse racing streaming is available too. Download the BetAmerica app to watch The Run For The Roses live on your mobile device.

It is not easy to win a bet on the Kentucky Derby. It is always a very competitive race and the best betting strategy for beginners is to stick to simple single bets like win, place or show. Keep stakes small to start with, especially for exotic wagers like exactas, trifectas and other combination bets.

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