It’s known as the dreaded rail, the worst starting position in the Kentucky Derby, and Archarcharch received the unenviable task of breaking from post 1 during Wednesday’s blind draw for Saturday’s $2 million race.
Considered a serious win contender off his Arkansas Derby victory, Archarcharch now faces a more difficult challenge on Saturday. The rail post defeated last year’s Kentucky Derby favorite, Lookin at Lucky, who got knocked around and shuffled back to the rear of the field approaching the first turn, and Jon Court will need to find a way to secure decent positioning aboard Archarcharch with 19 horses to his outside.
Dialed In, the slight 4-1 morning-line favorite in the “Run for the Roses,” drew a perfect gate in post 8. But anything outside of the rail figured to be okay for the late runner.
Shackleford and Soldat, a couple of forwardly-placed runners, were perhaps the biggest winners with posts 14 and 17, respectively. Their connections want to be up close tracking the pacesetter from the outside.
Mucho Macho Man (post 13) and Midnight Interlude (post 15) also received a favorable draw.
Uncle Mo, the 9-2 second choice on the morning line, will start near the grandstand rail in post 18, but the champion two-year-old owns enough tactical speed to establish decent positioning by the time he reaches the first bend.
Watch Me Go, the longest shot on the morning line at 50-1, must break from the far outside, a disadvantage for the midpack runner. The 30-1 Decisive Moment owns a similar run style and could run into trouble from post 2.
Twice the Appeal will break from post 3 with jockey Calvin Borel, who is going for his third straight, and fourth in the last five years, Derby win. Borel likes to put his horses on the rail so there’s nothing wrong with Twice the Appeal’s inside post.