They’ve raced across the United States, in Dubai and Japan, and now the Road to the Kentucky Derby has come to an end. Qualifying for the 143rd Run for the Roses wrapped up Saturday with the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby and the Grade 3 Lexington Stakes. We now have a pretty good idea which 20 horses will be racing on May 6, but the 2017 Kentucky Derby field isn’t finalized just yet, which is why there are still 22 thoroughbreds on the Bovada Racebook futures market at press time.

Anything can happen between now and May 3, when the horses will be officially entered into the Derby and their post positions drawn. But you can probably scratch two names off the odds list: Malagacy (22/1) and Cloud Computing (40/1). After removing the horses who have already withdrawn from Derby consideration, Malagacy is No. 13 in the points standings, while Cloud Computing is on the right side of the bubble at No. 20. The Daily Racing Form reported Thursday that both thoroughbreds were unlikely to compete in Louisville.

Cloud Cover

That remains to be seen. Cloud Computing’s trainer, Chad Brown, said earlier this week that he was “leaning” toward skipping the Derby, given how little racing the dark bay colt has under his saddle thus far. But Malagacy is already at Churchill Downs with trainer Todd Pletcher. One clue toward Pletcher’s final decision: Javier Castellano, who rode Malagacy to fifth place at the Arkansas Derby, announced Wednesday that he’s switching to Gunnevera (10/1) for the big race.

There’s one more horse on the list who’s a known question mark for Louisville. Thunder Snow (16/1), the Irish-born colt who punched his ticket with a 100-point victory at the Grade 2 UAE Derby in Dubai, is also nominated to run in the 2,000 Guineas, a Grade 1 stakes race on May 6 in Newmarket – and the first leg of the UK Triple Crown. For now, Kentucky Derby officials are planning on Thunder Snow making the trip, but it’s always up in the air with these UAE Derby winners.

Fans of Classic Empire don’t have to worry too much about their chosen one. He’s safely ensconced in Barn 36 at Churchill Downs after winning the Arkansas Derby, and he’s the 9/2 favorite to win the Kentucky Derby at press time. Always Dreaming is a close second at 19/4, followed by Irish War Cry at 6/1 and former Derby favorite McCraken at 9/1. Online betting on all the potential qualifiers is available right now at Bovada Racebook. Stay tuned for updated odds as the field continues to take shape.


*Odds as of April 21, 2017