Fierceness Favored to Win Historic 150th Kentucky Derby

Fierceness, the 5-2 morning line favorite, leads a competitive field of 20 horses in the 150th Kentucky Derby on May 4, 2024, with a purse of $5 million. The colt's impressive track record and trainer Todd Pletcher's confidence make it a strong contender for the coveted garland of roses.

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Fierceness Favored to Win Historic 150th Kentucky Derby

Fierceness Favored to Win Historic 150th Kentucky Derby

The stage is set for a historic showdown at Churchill Downs with the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby approaching on May 4, 2024. Fierceness, the 5-2 morning line favorite trained by Todd Pletcher and ridden by three-time Derby winner John Velazquez, leads a competitive field of 20 horses vying for the coveted garland of roses and a purse of $5 million.

Fierceness boasts an impressive track record, having won three of his five career races, including two Grade 1 stakes races - the Florida Derby and the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. In his most recent outing, the Florida Derby, Fierceness dominated the field, winning by a staggering 13 lengths and posting an Equibase Speed Score of 110 for the second time in his career.

Despite the colt's undeniable talent, some concerns have been raised about Fierceness's consistency, as he has yet to win back-to-back races. CBS Sports analyst Michelle Yu noted, "Fierceness has thrown in concerning performances, finishing seventh in the Champagne Stakes and third in the Holy Bull." However, trainer Pletcher remains confident in his horse, stating, "With a trouble-free trip, he will be hard to beat."

Fierceness's main challenger is expected to be Sierra Leone, trained by Chad Brown. With morning line odds of 3-1, Sierra Leone has never finished worse than second in his first four races, including a victory in the Blue Grass Stakes last month. However, Sierra Leone's running style differs from Fierceness, as he tends to close from far back in the early stages of the race.

Other notable contenders include Catching Freedom (8-1), trained by Brad Cox and ridden by Flavien Prat, and Just a Touch (10-1), also trained by Cox. Longshots to watch include Mystik Dan (20-1), Honor Marie (20-1), and Resilience (20-1).

The Kentucky Derby, the oldest continually run sporting event in the United States, has a rich history of favorites performing well. Since 1908, the post-time favorite has won 40 times out of 116 races, representing a 34.48% winning rate. Additionally, favorites have finished in the top three on 74 occasions, an in-the-money success rate of 63.79%.

As anticipation builds for the 150th Kentucky Derby, Fierceness aims to etch his name in the annals of racing history. With a star-studded field, a record-breaking purse, and the eyes of the world watching, the stage is set for an unforgettable showdown at Churchill Downs. Pletcher, reflecting on the significance of the race, stated, "The Kentucky Derby is the one race every trainer dreams of winning. To have the favorite in the 150th running is a tremendous honor and responsibility."

Key Takeaways

  • Fierceness is the 5-2 morning line favorite for the 150th Kentucky Derby.
  • Fierceness has won 3 of 5 career races, including 2 Grade 1 stakes races.
  • Sierra Leone is the main challenger with 3-1 morning line odds.
  • The Kentucky Derby favorite has a 34.48% winning rate since 1908.
  • The 150th Kentucky Derby has a record-breaking purse of $5 million.