Horse racing only crosses the American sports radar a few times a year, so you may need a refresher on how to bet it — the Kentucky Derby specifically.
A parimutuel system is used in betting on horse racing, which is different from betting on a basketball or football game against a point spread in Las Vegas. Bettors aren't wagering against the bookie or house, but against each other, and the house takes a cut. So these numbers could change plenty between now and post time (6:38 p.m. ET) on Saturday. It also means odds aren't fixed at the time of the bet.
But here are the odds to win the 2019 Kentucky Derby, along with some key terms to remember to make sure you know what you're doing when you walk up to the betting window or place a bet at your Kentucky Derby party.
2019 Kentucky Derby odds, post positions
Omaha Beach and Roadster opened as early co-favorites to win the 2019 Kentucky Derby, according to most Vegas sportsbooks. Improbable has since been installed as a co-favorite along with Roadster after Omaha Beach's sudden scratch.
Could we see another longshot winner at the Derby? The odds will be updated several times leading up to the race, but here are the results as of May 2:
(Morning line odds as of May 4, per KentuckyDerby.com)
Horse (Post pos.)
Omaha Beach (scratched)
Game Winner (16)
Maximum Security (7)
Code of Honor (13)
Win Win Win (14)
War of Will (1)
By My Standards (3)
Cutting Humor (10)
Country House (20)
Long Range Toddy (18)
Plus Que Parfait (9)
Gray Magician (4)
Master Fencer (15)
How to bet on the Kentucky Derby
If you're betting at a window, whether it be at Churchill Downs or your local track which is simulcasting the Kentucky Derby, say the name of the track, the number race you're betting, how much you want to wager, the type of wager and the numbers (post positions) of the horses you're including in your bet. Twinspires.com is the official betting site of the Kentucky Derby.
Horse racing wager types
There are tons of different ways to bet on a horse race, but here are some of the most common and ones you'll likely hear about come Kentucky Derby on Saturday.
— Win, place, show, or first, second and third. When you bet on the winner, you simply get the horse at its odds and if it wins, you cash that amount. So $10 on a horse at 12-to-1 nets you $120. If you bet on a horse to "place", or come in second, the payout is less, and same goes for "show."
You can make an "across the board" wager on a horse — a bet on that horse to win, place and show. If the horse wins, you collect all three; if second, two ways; and if third, one way, losing the win and place bets.
— Exacta, trifecta, superfecta. These wagers force a player to pick the exact finishing order of the top two, three or four horses, respectively. The payouts are multiplied the more horses you put in these bets.
You can also "box" an exacta, trifecta or superfecta, which means you bet on all the possible combinations. So if I bet a trifecta box on Omaha Beach, Roadster and Improbable in the Kentucky Derby, I'd actually be making six bets because I'm taking all six possible combinations.
— Pick three (or four, or five, or six). This involves picking the winners of several different races at a track on a given day. It often pays out the entire pool.
Kentucky Derby picks
This section will be updated once post location is determined April 30.