$500,000 Ohio Derby Betting Preview

Written by:
Dan Shapiro
Published on:

It’s the marquee event on the thoroughbred racing calendar in Ohio. the Ohio Derby at Thistledown in suburban Cleveland Saturday afternoon. While the Triple Crown races have been completed, that doesn’t mean that the excitement surrounding this sport has dissipated. 


Some of the better 3-year-olds this season have been entered, and the $500,000 purse is the reason. Thus, a nice payday awaits those who hit the board.

This was first run all the way back in 1876, and thus comes with plenty of history. Here is a look OHiat some of the contenders in the field of eight.

Among the Favorites

There’s a case to be made that half the field has a shot to win this race. Odds are always changing ahead of the race, but there are some solid horses invading Cleveland.

Two Phil’s is the morning-line favorite in the Ohio Derby, priced at 8-5 (+160). Though still looking to get that signature win at this level, “Phil” was a very good second in the Kentucky Derby, and has made a million dollars this season in just four starts (1 win, 2 seconds,1 third).

Jareth Loveberry retains the assignment, he and “Phil” having drawn post position No. 4. Larry Rivelli trains the son of Hard Spun.

Bishops Bay (Florent Geroux, post No. 3) is early 3-1 (+300) second choice. Trained by Brad Cox, someone who’s known to have his horses ready with the money on the line. “Bishops”  was second as the favorite in Belmont’s Peter Pan last out, beaten by a horse (Arcangelo) who went on to win the Belmont Stakes.

Wood Memorial (Aqueduct) bombardier Lord Miles (Edgard Zayas, post No. 7) and Henry Q (Kendrick Carmouche, post No. 1) are next on the list of favorites, with the early odds listed at 7-2 (+350) and 5-1 (+500), respectively.

Take a close look at the above horses if you’re going to bet on the Ohio Derby. Probably no huge score to be had, but the winner is taken to be one of this quartet.

For those who do not want a traditional wager (win, place, show, etc.), perhaps a head-to-head Horse A vs Horse B investment. Such a bet has become quite popular, according to horse racing head-to-head wagering.

Outsiders in Field

With only eight in the gate at the Ohio Derby, it’s not hard to keep all horses straight in one’s mind. Here are the other combatants, complete with jockeys and listed in order of early odds. 

Haye’s Strike (Cristian Torres, post No. 8, 6-1 [+600])

Agnello’s Dream (Erik Barbaran  post No. 5, 20-1 [+2000])

Last Cookie (Leandro Briceno, post No. 6, 30-1, [+3000[)

Timesatappin (Kevin Gonzalez, post No. 2, 30-1, [+3000])

If you’ve paid any attention to horse racing in 2023, it’s been a (Steve Martin reference) wild and crazy season, so perhaps the betting choices don’t prevail. 

Hail to “Henry”

It’s not hard to take Two Phil’s to win this race. That’s not going to happen. There will be a bit of a surprise.

Henry Q enters as a bit of an unknown, with two wins and two thirds in five starts this season. However, this son of Blame finished third in that aforementioned Peter Pan at Belmont and may be sitting on a big try in Ohio. Trained by Doug O’Neill and with a very competent jock in Kendrick Carmouche, take Henry Q to win the Ohio Derby.

There is always marquee simulcasting available on which to wager, as per horse racing odds.

Post time is High Noon (ET), with the Ohio Derby going as the 12th (final) event (6:20 PM ET).

- Dan Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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