Expert Picks

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 the nations top Kentucky Derby and Oaks contenders months in advance. From the infield to the suites and now the paddock, Joe has attended 14 Kentucky Derbies in person. Follow Joe on Twitter: @JoeyDaKRacing


Derby
  1. Tale of the Union
  2. Instagrand 
  3. Game Winner
  4. Improbable
  5. Maximus Mischief 
  6. Magic On Tap
  7. Vekoma
  8. Coliseum 
  9. Signalman
  10. Code of Honor
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Mother Mother
  3. Positive Spirit
  4. Restless Rider
  5. Feedback
  6. Vibrance
  7. Chasing Yesterday
  8. Oxy Lady
  9. It'sjustanillusion
  10. Bellafina
Ed DeRosa


Ed DeRosaEd DeRosa is director of marketing for Brisnet.com, the official data source of the Kentucky Derby and TwinSpires.com. 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. Game Winner
  2. Improbable
  3. Vekoma
  4. Maximus Mischief
  5. Looking at Bikinis
  6. Coliseum
  7. Complexity
  8. Mucho Gusto
  9. Tax
  10. Garter and Tie
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Bellafina
  3. Break Curfew
  4. Qahira
  5. Chasing Yesterday
  6. Enaya Alrabb
  7. Mother Mother
  8. Bye Bye J
  9. Summerland
  10. Varenka
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. Game Winner
  2. Improbable
  3. Coliseum
  4. Maximus Mischief
  5. Plus Que Parfait
  6. Signalman
  7. Tale of the Union
  8. Vekoma
  9. Aurelius Maximus
  10. Extra Hope
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Chasing Yesterday
  3. Liora
  4. Restless Rider
  5. Mother Mother
  6. Vibrance
  7. Bellafina
  8. Positive Spirit
  9. Feedback
  10. Oxy Lady
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. Game Winner
  2. Improbable
  3. Mucho
  4. Code of Honor
  5. Vekoma
  6. Roadster
  7. Coliseum
  8. Maximus Mischief
  9. Signalman
  10. Instagrand
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Restless Rider
  3. Feedback
  4. Bellafina
  5. Chasing Yesterday
  6. Mother Mother
  7. Enaya Alrabb
  8. Liora
  9. Positive Spirit
  10. Graceful Princess
Vance Hanson


Vance Hanson

Vance 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. Follow Vance on Twitter: @VPHanson


Derby
  1. Game Winner
  2. Improbable
  3. Mucho
  4. Instagrand
  5. Code of Honor
  6. Vekoma
  7. Tale of the Union
  8. Signalman
  9. Looking At Bikinis
  10. Coliseum
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Bellafina
  3. Restless Rider
  4. Vibrance
  5. Feedback
  6. Oxy Lady
  7. Mother Mother
  8. Sippican Harbor
  9. Chasing Yesterday
  10. It'sjustanillusion
Scott Shapiro

Scott Shampiro for TwinSpires and Kentucky Derby

Scott Shapiro handicaps thoroughbred racing for Twin Spires.com and Brisnet.com and analyzes professional football and college basketball for Bet America.com. 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. Improbable
  2. Game Winner
  3. Coliseum
  4. Maximus Mischief
  5. Magic on Tap
  6. Tale of the Union
  7. Signalman
  8. King for a Day
  9. Standard Deviation
  10. Code of Honor
Oaks
  1. Jaywalk
  2. Feedback
  3. Chasing Yesterday
  4. Mother Mother
  5. Restless Rider
  6. Take Charge Angel
  7. Bellafina 
  8. Brill 
  9. Chocolate Kisses 
  10. Vibrance

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