Classic Empire, McCraken Are Individual Choices, 'All Others' Favored in Derby Futures 3

Feb 21, 2017 John Asher

The always-popular Mutuel Field (#24), or “All Others,” looms as a solid betting favorite Pool 3 of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”), but the battle for the individual favorite is expected to be tight between reigning 2-year-old champion Classic Empire (#4, 8-1) and unbeaten rising stars McCraken (#15, 8-1), Mastery (#14, 10-1) and Irish War Cry (#11, 12-1).

Betting in the third of four 2017 KDFW pools is scheduled to open at noon (all times EST) on Friday, Feb. 24 and continue until 6 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 26. The wager will be available at racetracks and satellite wagering facilities throughout North America and online at and other online internet wagering platforms. The lone Kentucky Oaks Future Wager of 2017 also opens at noon on Friday and is set to close on Sunday at 6:30 p.m.

The Mutuel Field, which includes all 3-year-old Thoroughbreds other than the 23 individual horses on the roster of 24 betting interests, was rated the 4-1 favorite for KDFW Pool 3 in the morning line odds set by Churchill Downs’ Mike Battaglia. John C. Oxley’s Classic Empire, the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) winner who was the solid 5-1 individual choice in the wager’s Jan. 27-29 second pool, and Whitham Thoroughbreds LLC’s McCraken were next as the co-second choices in the morning line. Since Pool 2, Classic Empire suffered his second career defeat in a third-place finish in the Feb. 4 Holy Bull (GII) at Gulfstream Park and McCraken extended his record to four victories in as many races with an impressive win in his 2017 debut in Tampa Bay Downs’ Sam F. Davis (GIII).

Cheyenne Stables LLC’s Mastery, winner of the Los Alamitos Futurity (GI) in his most recent start for four-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert, and Isabella de Tomaso’s Irish War Cry, who defeated Classic Empire in the Holy Bull for Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Graham Motion, are expected to attract strong support.

The 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) is scheduled for Saturday, May 6.

Others expected to garner attention are Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Moss’ Gormley (#7, 15-1), winner of Santa Anita’s FrontRunner (GI) and Sham (GIII) trained by Derby winner John Shirreffs;  the Baffert-trained Sham runner-up American Anthem (#2, 15-1); and Remsen (GII) winner Mo Town (#16, 15-1).

Also at 15-1 are three horses that are among seven Pool 3 wagering interests not featured in Pool 2: the Todd Pletcher-trained Southwest (GIII) winner One Liner (#17, 15-1); Royal Mo (#20, 15-1), the Shirreffs-trained winner of Santa Anita’s Robert B. Lewis (GIII), and Iliad (#10, 15-1), winner of Santa Anita’s San Vicente for two-time Derby-winning trainer Doug O’Neill. Other new betting interests in Pool 3 include the unbeaten Japan-based Epicharis (Jpn) (#6, 30-1), Always Dreaming (#1, 50-1), Local Hero (#12, 50-1), and Tapwrit (#22, 20-1).

The Kentucky Derby Future Wager provides racing fans with the opportunity to wager on contenders for the Kentucky Derby at odds that could be more attractive than those available on the day of America’s greatest race. Payouts in the win and exacta wagering in Pool 3 were determined by the odds in place at Sunday’s conclusion of wagering.

The Future Wager offers $2 minimum win wagering on 24 betting interests that include 23 individual horses and the Mutuel Field, which includes all 3-year-old Thoroughbreds other than the individual wagering interests in a respective pool. Each pool also offers $2 exacta wagering on the 24 wagering interests, with the latter also available in $1 minimum increments in boxes and other multiple number configurations.

The official rules of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager prohibit scratches or refunds. Should Churchill Downs determine that a wagering interest has encountered an injury, illness or other circumstance would prohibit that horse from competing in the 2017 Kentucky Derby, wagering on the individual will be immediately suspended.

Free BRISNET past performance information and real-time odds for both the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks Future Wagers are available online at

CLICK HERE for a look at the wagering interests and morning line odds for Pool 3 of the 2017 Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

  • Ticket Info

    Sign up for race updates and more