The final Kentucky Derby points standings after 36 prep races

The final Kentucky Derby points standings after 36 prep races
Photo: Courtesy Churchill Downs

After 36 prep races, the Kentucky Derby 2021 points standings are now final, and the 2020 Breeders' Cup Juvenile 1-2 finishers, Essential Quality and Hot Rod Charlie, are atop the list with 140 and 110 points, respectively.  

Trained by Brad Cox, Essential Quality is undefeated through five starts and comes into the Kentucky Derby as a clear favorite in what will be an otherwise muddled field. 

Hot Rod Charlie comes in off a win in the Louisiana Derby, his only win in seven starts other than his maiden win in October at Santa Anita.

Super Stock, the upset winner of the Arkansas Derby, rounds out the top three with 109 points. 

Only 20 horses are allowed in the Kentucky Derby starting gate on May 1, so any horses ranked outside of the top 20 will need defections from the first 20 to get into the race. 

No entries are expected from either the European or Japan Road to the Derby this year.

Road to Kentucky Derby 2021 - Final points standings

RankHorsePtsTrainerNon-restricted
stakes earnings
1Essential Quality140Brad Cox$2,210,000
2Hot Rod Charlie110Doug O'Neill$962,000
3Super Stock109Steve Asmussen$709,000
4Like the King104Wesley Ward$161,300
5Known Agenda102Todd Pletcher$461,100
g-Rebel's Romance (IRE)100Charlie Appleby$510,000
6Rock Your World100John Sadler$510,000
7Bourbonic100Todd Pletcher$400,000
Greatest Honour80Shug McGaughey III$366,240
8Medina Spirit74Bob Baffert$290,000
9Concert Tour70Bob Baffert$820,000
10Midnight Bourbon66Steve Asmussen$430,000
Life Is Good60Bob Baffert$240,000
11$-Weyburn (Ont-C)60Jimmy Jerkens$215,000
12Mandaloun52Brad Cox$270,000
13Caddo River50Brad Cox$320,000
14Highly Motivated50Chad Brown$271,000
15$-Helium50Mark Casse$255,492
16$-Panadol40Salem bin Ghadayer$240,000
17Soup and Sandwich40Mark Casse$161,000
18Dynamic One40Todd Pletcher$140,000
19Crowded Trade40Chad Brown$135,000
20Sainthood40Todd Pletcher$47,500
21Proxy36Mike Stidham$170,000
22Rombauer34Michael McCarthy$260,500
23Hidden Stash32Vicki Oliver$130,000
24Dream Shake30Peter Eurton$126,000
25O Besos25Greg Foley$116,000
=+Drain the Clock20Saffie Joseph Jr.$273,950
=+g-New Treasure (IRE)20John Gosden$271,245
26Get Her Number20Peter Miller$242,667
27Hozier20Bob Baffert$220,000
28King Fury20Kenny McPeek$207,595
29$-Hockey Dad20Doug O'Neill$20,000
30Keepmeinmind18Robertino Diodoro$409,707
Spielberg17Bob Baffert$369,500
Jackie's Warrior14Steve Asmussen$532,500
Nova Rags14Bill Mott$111,250
Unbridled Honor13Todd Pletcher$57,500
Capo Kane12Harold Wyner$115,500
Papetu11Antonio Sano$75,925
Moonlite Strike11Saffie Joseph Jr.$45,000
=+Hard Rye Guy11Ian Wilkes$14,100
Risk Taking10Chad Brown$155,000
Sittin On Go10Dale Romans$145,800
=+Takeru Pegasus (JPN)10Yukihiro Kato$127,121
Candy Man Rocket10Bill Mott$120,000
g-Brooklyn Strong10Daniel Velazquez$112,500
Big Lake10Steve Asmussen$100,000
Hush of a Storm10Bill Morey$47,710
Defunded10Bob Baffert$45,000
Tarantino9Rodolphe Brisset$74,650
Roman Centurian9Simon Callaghan$38,000
Cowan8Steve Asmussen$620,477
Freedom Fighter5Bob Baffert$58,000
=+Reinvestment Risk4Chad Brown$120,000
=+f-Javanica4Eoin Harty$99,640
Overtook4Todd Pletcher$50,000
=+Ten for Ten4Shug McGaughey III$50,000
The Great One4Doug O'Neill$46,500
Starrininmydreams4Dallas Stewart$44,000
Smiley Sobotka4Dale Romans$40,400
=+Eagle Orb4Rudy Rodriguez$40,000
Gretzky the Great2Mark Casse$223,661
Arabian Prince2Dallas Stewart$28,063
g-Waspirant2John Shirreffs$26,000
g-Petruchio2Richard Mandella$24,450
Prime Factor2Todd Pletcher$22,200
Hold the Salsa2Richard Lugovich$19,125
=+g-Swill2Brad Cox$18,600
Big Thorn2Steve Asmussen$16,000
Parnelli2John Shirreffs$14,000
=+Govenor's Party2Daniel Franko$12,500
Pickin' Time1Kelly Breen$157,925
Red Flag1John Shirreffs$84,000
=+Therideofalifetime1Ignacio Correas IV$39,500
=+Woodhouse1C.R. Trout$37,500
$-It's My House1Bob Hess Jr.$36,760
=+Boca Boy1Cheryl Winebaugh$24,400
=+Upstriker1Ron Moquett$20,000
Santa Cruiser1Keith Desormeaux$19,500
=+Civil War1Tom Albertrani$16,875
=+Royal Number1Mike Trombetta$16,000

Bold = Update from previously published Leaderboard. … + = Not Triple Crown Nominated … $ = The connections have paid the $6,000 late Triple Crown nomination fee. 

Road to the Kentucky Derby (36 races)

The road to the Kentucky Derby was composed of 36 prep races, divided into the Kentucky Derby prep season, which started in September, and the Kentucky Derby championship series, which kicked off with the Risen Star Stakes (G2) at the Fair Grounds on Feb. 13.

Kentucky Derby Prep Season (20 races)

DateRaceTrackDistance1st-4th (Points)
Sept. 5IroquoisCD1 MileSittin On Go (10), Midnight Bourbon (4), Super Stock (2), =+Therideofalifetime (1)
Sept. 26American PharoahSA 1 1/16 MilesGet Her Number (10), Rombauer (4), Speilberg (2), Waspirant (1)
Oct. 3Breeders' FuturityKEE 1 1/16 MilesEssential Quality (10), Keepmeinmind (4), Super Stock (2), =+Upstriker (1)
Oct. 10ChampagneBEL1 MileJackie's Warrior (10), =+Reinvestment Risk (4), Midnight Bourbon (2), =+Civil War (1)
Nov. 6Breeders' Cup JuvenileKEE 1 1/16 MilesEssential Quality (20), Hot Rod Charlie (8), Keepmeinmind (4), Jackie's Warrior (2)
Nov. 28Kentucky Jockey ClubCD 1 1/16 MilesKeepmeinmind (10), Smiley Sobotka (4), Arabian Prince (2), =+Swill (1)
Dec. 5RemsenAQ 1 1/8 MilesBrooklyn Strong (10), =+Ten for Ten (4), Known Agenda (2), Pickin' Time (1)
Dec. 18Springboard MileRP1 MileSenor Buscador (0), Cowan (4), =+Red N Wild (0), Saffa's Day (0)
Dec. 19Los Alamitos FuturityLRC1 1/16 MilesSpielberg (10), The Great One (4), Petruchio (2), Red Flag (1)
Jan. 1JeromeAQ 1 MileCapo Kane (10), =+Eagle Orb (4), Hold the Salsa (2), =+Swill (1)
Jan. 2ShamSA 1 MileLife Is Good (10), Medina Spirit (4), Parnelli (2), Waspirant (1)
Jan. 16LecomteFG 1 1/16 MilesMidnight Bourbon (10), Proxy (4), Mandaloun (2), Santa Cruiser (1)
Jan. 22Smarty JonesOP 1 MileCaddo River (10), Cowan (4), Big Thorn (2), Moonlite Strike (1)
Jan. 30Holy BullGP1 1/16 MilesGreatest Honour (10), Tarantino (4), Prime Factor (2), Papetu (1)
Jan. 30Robert B. LewisSA 1 1/16 MilesMedina Spirit (10), Roman Centurian (4), Hot Rod Charlie (2), Spielberg (1)
Feb. 6WithersAQ 1 1/8 MilesRisk Taking (10), Overtook (4), Capo Kane (2), =+Royal Number (1)
Feb. 6Sam F. DavisTam1 1/16 MilesCandy Man Rocket (10), Nova Rags (4), Hidden Stash (2), =+Boca Boy (1)
Feb. 13El Camino Real DerbyGG1 1/8 Miles (AW)Rombauer (10), =+f-Javanica (4), =+Govenor's Party (2), =+It's My House (1)
Feb. 26John BattagliaTP1 1/16 M (AW)Hush of a Storm (10), Like the King (4), Gretzky the Great (2), =+Hard Rye Guy (1)
Feb. 27SouthwestOP 1 1/16 MilesEssential Quality (10), Spielberg (4), Jackie's Warrior (2), =+Woodhouse (1)

Kentucky Derby Championship Series (16 races)

DateRaceRacetrackDistance1st - 4th (Points)
Feb. 13Risen StarFG1 1/8 MilesMandaloun (50), Proxy (20), Midnight Bourbon (10), O Besos (5)
Feb. 27Fountain of YouthGP1 1/16 MilesGreatest Honour (50), =+Drain the Clock (20), Papetu (10), Tarantino (5)
March 6GothamAQ 1 Mile$-Weyburn (50), Crowded Trade (20), Highly Motivated (10), Freedom Fighter (5)
March 6Tampa Bay DerbyTam1 1/16 Miles$-Helium (50), Hidden Stash (20), Moonlite Strike (10), Unbridled Honor (5)
March 6San FelipeSA 1 1/16 MilesLife Is Good (50), Medina Spirit (20), Dream Shake (10), Roman Centurian (5)
March 13RebelOP1 1/16 MilesConcert Tour (50), Hozier (20), Big Lake (10), Super Stock (5)
March 20Louisiana DerbyFG1 3/16 MilesHot Rod Charlie (100), Midnight Bourbon (40), O Besos (20), Proxy (10)
MarchSunland DerbySun1 1/8 MilesCancelled
March 27UAE DerbyMey1 3/16 MilesRebel's Romance (100), =+Panadol (40), =+New Treasure (Ire) (20), =+Takeru Pegasus (10)
March 27Jeff Ruby SteaksTP1 1/8 Miles (AW)Like the King (100), Sainthood (40), =+Hockey Dad (20), =+Hard Rye Guy (10)
March 27Florida DerbyGP1 1/8 MilesKnown Agenda (100), Soup and Sandwich (40), Greatest Honour (20), Nova Rags (10)
April 3Wood MemorialAQ 1 1/8 MilesBourbonic (100), Dynamic One (40), Crowded Trade (20), Weyburn (10)
April 3Blue GrassKEE 1 1/8 MilesEssential Quality (100), Highly Motivated (40), Rombauer (20), Hidden Stash (10)
April 3Santa Anita DerbySA 1 1/8 MilesRock Your World (100), Medina Spirit (40), Dream Shake (20), Defunded (10)
April 10LexingtonKEE 1 1/16 MilesKing Fury (20), Unbridled Honor (8), Starrininmydreams (4), Proxy (2)
April 10Arkansas DerbyOP1 1/8 MilesSuper Stock (100), Caddo River (40), Concert Tour (20), Get Her Number (10)

(T) = Turf … (AW) = Synthetic … Note: Senor Buscador (1st), Red N Wild (3rd) and Saffa’s Day (4th) did not accrue points in the Dec. 18 Springboard Mile because they competed with Lasix on race day. … The 2020-21 Sunland Park meet was officially cancelled by the New Mexico Racing Commission on Feb. 18, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

2020-21 European Road to the Kentucky Derby standings

The European Road to the Kentucky Derby was composed of seven races, but none of the European contenders are expected to enter Kentucky Derby 2021. One horse has entered the Kentucky Derby from the European road: Mendelssohn, who finished 20th in 2018. He also qualified by winning the UAE Derby. 

RankHorsePtsTrainerNon-restricted
stakes earnings
=+Fundamental (GB)30John & Thady Gosdem$0
=+f-My Generation20Joseph O'Brien$26,490
=+Highland Avenue (Ire)20Charlie Appleby$0
=+Qaader (IRE)12Mark Johnston$26,568
=+Sealiway (Fr)10Frederic Rossi$235,281
=+Mac Swiney (Ire)10James Bolger$232,127
=+New Mandate (Ire)10Ralph Beckett$90,436
=+High Definition (Ire)10Aidan O'Brien$55,830
=+f-Rocky Sky8Ross O'Sullivan$8,531
=+Sergeant Tibbs (GB)8Robyn Brisland$0
=+Moraaheq6Roger Varian$0
=+Nando Parrado (GB)4Clive Cox$164,769
=+One Ruler (Ire)4Charlie Appleby$101,005
=+Ontario (Ire)4Aidan O'Brien$49,261
=+Monaasib (GB)4Kevin Prendergast$17,680
=+f-Messidor (Ire)4Joseph O'Brien$4,041
=+Oo De Lally (Ire)4Andrew Balding$0
=+Cobh (Ire)3Clive Cox$52,500
=+Quintillus (GB)3Charlie Appleby$0
=+Laws of Indices (Ire)2Ken Condon$95,500
=+Baradar (Ire)2Roger Varian$31,380
=+Snapraeterea (Ire)2Joseph O'Brien$24,574
=+Rebel Step2Andrew Slattery$1,796
=+Bodroy (Ire)2John Butler$0
=+Gear Up (Ire)1Mark Johnston$138,515
=+Libertine (Ire)1Fabrice Vermeulen$25,155
=+Sir Lucan (Ire)1Aidan O'Brien$3,722

7 Races

DateRaceRacetrackDistance1st - 4th (Points)
Sept. 26Juddmonte Royal LodgeNewmarket (GB)1 Mile (T)=+New Mandate (Ire) (10), =+Ontario (Ire) (4), =+Cobh (Ire) (2), =+Gear Up (Ire) (1)
Sept. 26Smurfit BeresfordCurragh (Ire)1 Mile (T)=+High Definition (Ire) (10), =+Monaasib (GB) (4), =+Snapraeterea (Ire) (2), =+Sir Lucan (Ire) (1)
Oct. 4Prix Jean-Luc LagardèreLongchamp (Fr)7 Furlongs (T)=+Sealiway (Fr) (10), =+Nando Parrado (GB) (4), =+Laws Of Indices (Ire) (2), =+Libertine (Ire) (1)
Oct. 24Vertem Futurity TrophyDoncaster (GB)1 Mile (T)=+Mac Swiney (Ire) (10), =+One Ruler (Ire) (4), =+Baradar (Ire) (2), =+Cobh (Ire) (1)
March 3Road to the Kentucky Derby Condition StakesKempton Park (GB)1 Mile (AW)=+Highland Avenue (Ire) (20), =+Sergeant Tibbs (GB) (8), =+Oo De Lally (Ire) (4), =+Bodroy (Ire) (2)
March 5Patton (Listed)Dundalk (Ire)1 Mile (AW)=+f-My Generation (20), =+f-Rocky Sky (8), =+f-Messidor (Ire) (4), =+Rebel Step (2)
April 1Cardinal Condition StakesChelmsford City (GB)1 Mile (AW)=+Fundamental (GB) (30), =+Qaader (Ire) (12), =+Moraaheq (6), =+Quintillus (GB) (3)

2020-21 Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby standings

The Japan Road to the Kentucky Derby was composed of four races, but none of the Japanese runners are expected to enter Kentucky Derby 2021. The only Kentucky Derby starter from the Japan road was Master Fencer, who finished sixth in 2019.

RankHorsePtsTrainerLifetime earnings
=+God Selection (Jpn)40Teiichi Konno$309,883
1La Perouse (Jpn)30Kazuo Fujisawa$264,868
2Alain Barows (Jpn)20Masato Hayashi$781,045
=+Meisho Murakumo (Jpn)16Yusuke Wada$218,390
=+Probatio (Jpn)12Tsuyoshi Tanaka$192,317
3Lemon Pop10Hiroyasu Tanaka$223,757
=+Ranryo O (Jpn)8Satoshi Kokubo$464,673
=+Gold Higher (Jpn)8Ryuji Okubo$206,298
=+Takeru Pegasus (Jpn)7Yukhiro Kato$202,970
=+Taisei Again (Jpn)6Takeshi Matsushita$230,033
=+Ladybug (Jpn)6Yoshihito Kitade$179,923
=+Luce d'Oro (Jpn)4Yutaka Takahashi$308,574
=+Plus Ultra (Jpn)2Takahisa Tezuka$155,794
=+Shin Yomoginesu (Jpn)1Keizo Ito$105,547

4 races

DateRaceRacetrackDistance1st - 4th (Points)
Nov. 28CattleyaTokyo Racecourse1 MileLemon Pop (10), =+Takeru Pegasus (Jpn) (4), =+Plus Ultra (Jpn) (2), =+Shin Yomoginesu (Jpn) (1)
Dec. 16Zen-Nippon Nisai YushunKawasaki Racecourse1 MileAlain Barows (Jpn) (20), =+Ranryo O (Jpn) (8), =+Luce d'Oro (Jpn) (4), =+Taisei Again (Jpn) (2)
Feb. 21HyacinthTokyo Racecourse1 MileLa Perouse (Jpn) (30), Probatio (Jpn) (12), Ladybug (Jpn) (6), Takeru Pegasus (Jpn) (3)
March 27FukuryuNakayama Racecourse1 1/8 MilesGod Selection (Jpn) (40), Meisho Murakumo (Jpn) (16), Gold Higher (Jpn) (8), Taisei Again (Jpn) (4)

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