2020 Kentucky Derby odds: Nadal among Las Vegas' favorites

January 21, 2020 12:51pm

The story of a Las Vegas insider’s early $500 Kentucky Derby future wager on Justify returning $150,000 won’t repeat itself if Nadal is the next late-debuting winner for the Bob Baffert barn destined for glory in ay.

William Hill U.S. opened the son of Blame, unveiled Sunday with a flashy victory at Santa Anita Park, at 20-1 on its latest 2020 Kentucky Derby odds sheet distributed Monday afternoon. Later that night, a Twitter user with access to live prices via the William Hill app noted Nadal had dropped all the way to 12-1.

Only Derby prep winners Tiz the Law (8-1), Independence Hall (10-1) and Maxfield (10-1) are listed at shorter odds to win the Derby than Nadal. His price is on par with these fellow 12-1 shots: Dennis’ Moment, Storm the Court and Thousand Words.

So the value — if there was any to be had — is gone on this Bob Baffert trainee. In the coming months, we’ll see if it was money well spent for those bettors quick to play.

Nadal, a $700,000 auction purchase as a 2-year-old, went 6 1/2 furlongs on debut, rushing up the rail under apprentice jockey J.C. Diaz to take control before the turn. After cutting swift opening fractions of 21.88 and 44.91 seconds, he felt the whip once in the stretch.

The rather large Nadal appeared to burst home from there, stopping the clock in 1:15.82.

Nadal will have allowance options, but he’s more than likely bound for stakes off this effort, facing a two-turn test in his next start. Baffert is looking loaded in search of a record-tying sixth Kentucky Derby win, also training Thousand Words, American Pharoah Stakes winner Eight Rings (15-1), Sham Stakes winner Authentic (16-1) and Bob Hope winner High Velocity (25-1).

In terms of other changes to the board, Enforceable dropped from 125-1 to 30-1 this week on the heels of his Lecomte Stakes victory. Blackberry Wine, an impressive allowance winner on the undercard, opened at 75-1. Those two are likely to meet in Fair Grounds’ Risen Star.

Liam’s Lucky Charm, the Florida-bred winner of Tampa Bay Downs’ Pasco Stakes, is also on to deeper waters along the Derby trail. You can get him at 100-1 with the next race spot to be decided.

William Hill’s Derby futures can be played at its properties in Nevada. Here’s a full look at the board: 

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