Best Prop Bets for the Kentucky Derby 2023

Kentucky Derby, Horse Racing, Horses, Finish Line

The Kentucky Derby is one of the most popular horse races on earth. It also attracts bettors of all ages and backgrounds who want to take part in the action. The opportunities to win money are there for the taking, and plenty of betting options are available for the race.

This article focuses on several 2023 Kentucky Derby prop bets. You will be surprised by the unusual markets some sportsbooks offer. That’s especially true for BetUS, where I got all odds for this article.

Before I move on to them, I have a post with 2023 Kentucky predictions that is focused on the top contenders. I also wrote a separate post about the top Kentucky Derby sleepers, so check out these two articles for more traditional betting opportunities for the race.

Color Of Winning Horse

  • Dark Bay; -115
  • Bay; +150
  • Chestnut; +300
  • Gray; +400
  • Brown; +700

This is typically one of the most popular Kentucky Derby props every year. What will be the color of the winning horse? The oddsmakers believe that a dark bay competitor will claim victory at Churchill Downs.

This particular market is a great option for anyone who wants to hedge their bets on the Kentucky Derby. Correctly predicting an outright winner isn’t as easy as it seems. Betting on the color of the winning horse essentially allows you to cover more contenders.

Bay is historically the most successful color in the Kentucky Derby. Bay-colored horses have won the race on 56 different occasions. The most unsuccessful color is gray, with only eight gray-colored horses ever winning.

Chestnut-colored horses have the second most victories at the Kentucky Derby with 49. Last year’s winner, Rich Strike, was a chestnut horse. Their coats are slightly lighter than Bay horses. The most famous chestnut horse, of course, was Secretariat.

The third-most winning horse by color at the Kentucky Derby is brown, which includes 17 total victories. The most notable brown horse was Big Brown, who won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes in 2008. Brown horses look similar to bay horses but are slightly darker.

The dark bay color is the favorite here, which makes a lot of sense. The top contender in 2023 Forte is a dark bay colt. The third most likely winner according to the best horse betting sites, Derma Sotogake, is also of the same color.

The same applies to a few more horses, so the odds of -115 are surprisingly high, and I’m willing to take them.

My Pick:
Dark Bay

Kentucky Derby Margin of Victory

  • 1 Length To 2 and 3/4 Lengths; +150
  • 3 Lengths To 5 and 3/4 Lengths; +200
  • 1/2 Length To 3/4 Length; +450
  • 6 Lengths To 7 and 3/4 Lengths; +750
  • Head; +800
  • Neck; +800
  • 8 Lengths To 10 and 3/4 Lengths; +900
  • Nose; +1000
  • 11 Lengths To 14 and 3/4 Lengths; +1400
  • 15 Lengths Or More; +1600
  • Dead Heat; +3300

Here’s another popular prop bet for the Kentucky Derby 2023 worth targeting. What will be the margin of victory for the race this year? The record currently sits at eight lengths, which was accomplished on four different occasions.

The horses tied for the largest margin of victory include Old Rosebud (1914), Johnstown (1939), Whirlaway (1941), and Assault (1946). Whirlaway and Assault went on to win the Triple Crown during those respective years.

When you look at the entire history of the Kentucky Derby, the margin of victory is typically pretty close. On 44 occasions, the winner was decided by less than one length. However, there’s also been 23 finishes in which the champion won by four lengths or more.

The odds seem to suggest that a new record for the largest margin of victory could be set in 2023. However, Forte is the main favorite and has never won by more than five lengths. The pace should be pretty close this year, and winning by a length or so seems to be the likely outcome.

My Pick:
1 Length To 2 3/4 Lengths

Winning Jockey’s Celebration

  • Fist Pump; -150
  • Kissing the Horse; +150
  • Waving to the Crowd; +300

The celebration of the winning jockey is always a major area of interest. It’s an opportunity for you to make even more money from your predictions. However, you only have three options to choose from in this market.

The oddsmakers believe that a fist pump will be the likely method of celebration. Keep in mind that it’s rare for a jockey to wave to the crowd after they claim the Kentucky Derby. They’re often so elated that the celebratory gesture tends to be more animated and spirited.

A fist pump is the go-to option for many Kentucky Derby bettors. It’s a gesture that champions at Churchill Downs have used in the past. However, I think you’re better off taking advantage of the value in the odds for the winning jockey to kiss their horse. We see this often enough, and +150 is an excellent price.

My Pick:
Kissing The Horse

Will Carly Pearce Forget a Word from the National Anthem?

  • Yes; +350
  • No; -600

Country music star Carly Pearce will sing the National Anthem at the 2023 Kentucky Derby. The 33-year-old is also attending the prestigious race for the very first time in her life. Pearce had previously expressed interest in singing at the race, and his wish is about to come true.

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Pearce follows a long list of prolific artists who’ve performed at the Derby. The most notable singers/musicians include Mary J. Blige, Rascal Flatts, and LeAnn Rimes. Pearce is also a Kentucky native, so this performance will be extra special.

There’s no question that Pearce is also a massive fan of the Kentucky Derby. She admitted that she enjoys the allure and cultural significance of the race. Pearce also stated that singing the National Anthem at the Derby is a “bucket list moment” in her career.

Pearce is currently the reigning ACM Awards Female Artist of the Year winner. She also recently earned her fourth No. 1 hit song when she released “What He Didn’t Do” in 2021. Her popularity has skyrocketed over the past several years.

Does Pearce have experience singing the National Anthem? Yes – she has sung it at several big events during her career, including the World Series. Pearce is no stranger to the main stage, and I believe she’ll do a phenomenal job at Churchill Downs.

My Pick: