There are no shortage of opinions and angles when handicapping the Kentucky Derby. With up to 20 horses leaving the starting gate on the First Saturday in May, let our experts help you find good plays and picks for your Kentucky Derby betting. Once you find your favorite personality or a good looking pick, head over to TwinSpires.com to back your pick with a $2 win bet!

Joe Kristufek


Churchill Downs, Fair Grounds and twinspires.com racing analyst Joe Kristufek began his career in his native Chicago, climbing the ladder at the local racing venues. The 1989 rivalry between Kentucky Derby winner Sunday Silence and his nemesis Easy Goer got Joe hooked on horse racing. A self-proclaimed "horse racing ambassador", Joe's industry experience spans from Dubai to Hong Kong to more than 35 tracks across North America. An award winning TV producer and fan development specialist, he relishes the challenge of scouting Kentucky Derby and Oaks hopefuls months in advance. From the infield to the suites and now the paddock, Joe has attended 15 Kentucky Derbies in person.  Follow Joe on Twitter: @JoeyDaKRacing


Derby
  1. Essential Quality 
  2. Greatest Honour
  3. Life Is Good
  4. Prevalance
  5. Mandaloun
  6. Midnight Bourbon
  7. Caddo River
  8. Proxy
  9. Swiftsure
  10. Jackie's Warrior
Oaks
  1. Clairiere
  2. Travel Column
  3. Vequist 
  4. Zaajel
  5. Malathaat 
  6. Dayoutoftheoffice
  7. Simply Ravishing
  8. Girl Daddy
  9. Curlin's Catch
  10. Kalypso 

Ed DeRosa

Ed DeRosaEd DeRosa is a director of marketing for TwinSpires.com, the official wagering site of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs. Ed joined Churchill Downs Inc. in July 2011 following nine years as a writer and editor with Thoroughbred Times. He grew up in Cleveland and learned to love horse racing while going to Thistledown (now known as Jack Thistledown) with his grandfather. Before 2015, Ed had never seen a Triple Crown winner; he still hasn't seen an Indians World Championship. Ed's favorite horses are Real Quiet, Ghostzapper, and Rachel Alexandra. Follow Ed on Twitter: @EJXD2

Derby
  1. Essential Quality
  2. Life Is Good
  3. Greatest Honour
  4. Highly Motivated
  5. Keepmeinmind
  6. Hot Rod Charlie
  7. Medina Spirit
  8. Dream Shake
  9. Mandaloun
  10. Midnight Bourbon
Oaks
  1. Dayoutoftheoffice
  2. Clairiere
  3. Travel Column
  4. Vequist
  5. Salt Plage
  6. Li'l Tootsie
  7. Dreaming of Drew
  8. Malathaat
  9. Varda
  10. Sun Path

James Scully

James ScullyJames Scully writes/handicaps for Brisnet.com, TwinSpires.com and KentuckyDerby.com. He started working for Brisnet.com in 1998. A graduate of Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky, James has been a lifelong University of Kentucky and Cincinnati Bengals/Reds fan. He remembers watching Seattle Slew on TV and attended his first Kentucky Derby in 1981 (Pleasant Colony). Follow James on Twitter: @James_Scully111

Derby
  1. Essential Quality
  2. Greatest Honour
  3. Mandaloun
  4. Life Is Good
  5. Risk Taking
  6. Medina Spirit
  7. Caddo River
  8. Roman Centurian
  9. Proxy
  10. Dream Shake
Oaks
  1. Clairiere
  2. Travel Column
  3. Malathaat
  4. Will's Secret
  5. Slumber Party
  6. Wholebodemeister
  7. Zaajel
  8. Astute
  9. Vequist
  10. Simply Ravishing

Kellie Reilly

Kellie Reilly

Kellie Reilly, a staff writer in the Editorial Department at Brisnet.com, is a regular contributor to the TwinSpires.com blog and KentuckyDerby.com. Her articles have also been featured on NBCSports.com and in the official Kentucky Derby program. Kellie's academic background is in history, culminating in an M.A. from her hometown University of New Orleans. A racing fan since childhood, Kellie is especially interested in pedigrees and the international racing scene. Follow Kellie on Twitter: @GallantFox1930

Derby
  1. Essential Quality
  2. Greatest Honour
  3. Prevalence
  4. Caddo River
  5. Life Is Good
  6. Mandaloun
  7. Rock Your World
  8. Hidden Stash
  9. Medina Spirit
  10. Hot Rod Charlie
Oaks
  1. Clairiere
  2. Travel Column
  3. Malathaat
  4. Will's Secret
  5. Zaajel
  6. Wholebodemeister
  7. Dayoutoftheoffice
  8. Slumber Party
  9. The Grass Is Blue
  10. Kalypso

Vance Hanson

Vance Hanson

Vance Hanson is a contributing writer and editor for BRISnet.com, TwinSpires.com and KentuckyDerby.com with over 20 years of Thoroughbred racing experience. Prior to joining the Churchill Downs Inc. family, he served as a publicity assistant at Canterbury Park in Minnesota, where he began following the sport in the late 1980s, and as a handicapper/writer for Daily Racing Form in Lexington, Kentucky. 

Derby
  1. Essential Quality
  2. Life Is Good
  3. Mandaloun
  4. Caddo River
  5. Proxy
  6. Medina Spirit
  7. Hot Rod Charlie
  8. Keepmeinmind
  9. Risk Taking
  10. Greatest Honour
Oaks
  1. Travel Column
  2. Clairiere
  3. Vequist
  4. Dayoutoftheoffice
  5. Simply Ravishing
  6. Astute
  7. Malathaat
  8. Kalypso
  9. Moon Swag
  10. Will's Secret

Scott Shapiro

Scott Shampiro for TwinSpires and Kentucky Derby

Scott Shapiro handicaps thoroughbred racing for TwinSpires, is part of the Churchill Downs on-air simulcast team, and analyzes NFL football & PGA golf for TwinSpires Sportsbook. Scott fell in love with thoroughbred racing when his father took him to Garden State Park in 1985 to see Kentucky Derby winner Spend A Buck race in the Jersey Derby instead of the Preakness Stakes. Scott graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1996 and remains a die-hard Badger football and basketball fan today. His favorite horses are A.P. Indy, Fly So Free, Victory Gallop, and Ghostzapper.  

Follow Scott on Twitter:@ScottShap34

Derby
  1. Essential Quality
  2. Greatest Honour
  3. Caddo River
  4. Concert Tour
  5. Life Is Good
  6. Prevalence
  7. Mandaloun
  8. Hot Rod Charlie
  9. Medina Spirit
  10. Risk Taking
Oaks
  1. Clairiere
  2. Travel Column
  3. Dayoutoftheoffice
  4. Malathaat
  5. Zaajel
  6. Simply Ravishing
  7. Wholebodemeister
  8. Crazy Beautiful
  9. Kalypso
  10. Vequist

Got a favorite? Bet online at TwinSpires.com