The 145th running of the Kentucky Derby will go off in Louisville, Kentucky at the legendary Churchill Downs racetrack on Saturday, May 4, 2019.
However, you can bet on the first leg of US horse racing’s Triple Crown at various locations inside Pennsylvania, including the privacy of your own home.
Where you can bet on the Kentucky Derby in PA
That’s right, there are five popular horse racing mobile apps available in PA. Each will allow you to place a bet on the 2019 Kentucky Derby from anywhere inside the state where you can access the internet.
These apps are:
- TwinSpires.com – Churchill Downs’ horse racing app and the official betting partner of the Kentucky Derby.
- TVG.com – The top horse racing TV channel and online horse betting site in the US.
- BetAmerica.com – A second Churchill Downs’ horse racing betting app that also operates New Jersey online sports betting and online casino products.
- DRF Bets – The Daily Racing Form’s online horse racing betting platform.
- NYRABets.com – The New York Racing Association’s online horse wagering site.
PA horse racing facilities
There are also six live horse racing facilities taking bets on the race. Plus, another eight off-track betting facilities run by these horse racing operations that are accepting all Kentucky Derby action.
The six live PA horse racing facilities that offer simulcast wagering on the Kentucky Derby also include full-scale casino operations on the property. Plus, three of the six have launched PA sports betting operations and two more are expected to do the same later this year.
The six live PA horse racing facilities are:
- Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack in Chester
- Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course in Grantville
- Parx Casino and Racing in Bensalem
- The Meadows Racetrack & Casino in Washington (No sportsbook)
- Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs in Wilkes-Barre (Sportsbook application pending)
- Presque Isle Downs & Casino in Erie (Sportsbook coming June 1)
Finally, each of these horse racing facilities is also authorized to offer simulcast wagering at their own state-approved off-track betting facilities. Two of the eight facilities have also launched full-scale sports betting. These eight facilities are:
- Northeast Turf Club in Philadelphia’s Roosevelt Mall (Parx)
- South Philadelphia Turf Club on Packer Avenue in Philadelphia’s Stadium District (Parx) (Sportsbook open)
- Valley Forge Turf Club near Valley Forge National Park (Parx) (Sportsbook open)
- Lancaster OTW in Lancaster (Penn National Gaming)
- York OTW in York (Penn National Gaming)
- The Downs at East Stroudsburg in the Poconos (Mohegan Sun Pocono)
- The Downs at Lehigh Valley in Allentown (Mohegan Sun Pocono)
- Meadows Harmar on Anchor Drive in Pittsburgh’s Harmar Township (The Meadows)
Kentucky Derby Betting Basics
Churchill Downs claims people win over $150 million betting on what many call the most exciting two minutes in sports every year.
There are five basic ways to bet on any horse race, including the Kentucky Derby. It’s a good idea to learn what they are if you want some of that cash. The following is a quick guide to the Kentucky Derby betting basics:
A win bet is a bet placed on a single horse to win the race. If the horse you picked wins, you win the bet and get paid based on odds set by the track.
A place bet is a bet on one horse to finish either first or second in the race. You win if your horse wins or finishes at least second. Again, you get paid based on odds set by the track, but this time they’ll be a little smaller.
A show bet is a bet placed on a single horse to finish either first, second, or third. You win if the horse wins, or finishes second or third. Again, you get paid based on odds set by the track, but they’re sure to be even smaller this time because the show bet is clearly much easier to win.
An exacta bet is a bet placed on two horses to finish first and second in that exact order. You win if your horses finish top two in the order you picked them. The difficulty of doing so means exacta bets pay big odds.
However, you can also box the bet, allowing you to basically bet on the same two horses to win and place in any order. This increases your chances of winning, but also the cost of the bet, lowering your profits if the exacta does come in.
A Trifecta bet is a bet on three horses to finish first, second, and third, in that exact order. You win if your horses finish top three in the order you picked them.
Of course, the difficulty of doing so means trifecta bets pay the biggest odds of any basic bet at the track.
However, just like an exacta, you can also box this bet. Essentially this will have you betting on the same three horses to win, place, and show in any order. Again, this increases your chances of winning, but also makes the bet more costly, lowering your potential profit if you hit it.
Looking at the 2019 Kentucky Derby Field
People pick horses for a variety of different reasons ranging from a lucky number to a familiar name. However, horse racing’s top handicappers do it by taking a long hard look at the field.
The 2019 Kentucky Derby is a 20-horse field. Here’s a look at the contenders, pretenders, ponies with potential, and possible surprises involved in the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby this year. Opening odds estimates are from HorseRacingNation.com:
Omaha Beach is the No. 2 horse. After beating two Bob Baffert-trained horses on the road to the Kentucky Derby, this Richard Mandella-trained horse is the likely favorite at 9 to 2.
Roadster is the No. 5 horse. Famed trainer Bob Baffert has compared the horse to his 2018 Triple Crown winning horse Justify. Roadster won the Santa Anita Derby this year and looks like a co-favorite at 5 to 1.
Tacitus is the No. 1 horse. Wins in the Tampa Bay Derby and the Wood Memorial have this Bill Mott-trained horse coming in at 6 to 1.
Game Winner is the No. 8 horse. Another Bob Baffert-trained horse, Game Winner finished runner-up to Roadster and Omaha Beach in consecutive Kentucky Derby prep races and comes in at 8 to 1.
Ponies with potential
Improbable is the No. 11 horse. Another Bob Baffert-trained horse, Improbable opens at 10 to 1 after two second-place finishes already this year.
Maximum Security is the No. 7 horse. This Jason Servis-trained horse went wire-to-wire win the Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park and has actually never lost a race. Maximum Security will come it at around 10 to 1.
Vekoma is the No. 3 horse. This 2019 Blue Grass Stakes winner will have Louisville local trainer George Weaver by his side and will come into the race at 15 to 1.
Code of Honor
The Shug McGaughey–trained Code of Honor is the No. 9 horse. The horse finished third in the Florida Derby and won the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park. He will likely open at the Kentucky Derby at 15 to 1.
War of Will
War of Will is the No. 12 horse and will open at 20 to 1 coming off a ninth-place finish in the Louisiana Derby. The Mark Casse–trained horse was an early-season Derby favorite after winning the Lecomte and Risen Star.
By My Standards
The Bret Calhoun–trained By My Standards is the No. 12 horse and will come in at 20 to 1 after a win in the Louisiana Derby. However, horses from the Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans have traditionally run poorly at Churchill Downs.
Haikal finished third in the Wood Memorial coming off a Gotham Stakes win at Aqueduct. The Kiaran McLaughlin-trained horse is coming out of the No. 10 gate and opens at 30 to 1.
Long Range Toddy
The Steve Asmussen-trained Long Range Toddy opens at 30 to 1 coming out of the No. 13 gate. However, he has four career wins that include beating Improbable in the Rebel.
Tax is the No. 14 horse and opens at 30 to 1 after finishing second in the Wood Memorial. Trainer Danny Gargan claimed this horse and turned him into his first Kentucky Derby starter.
Cutting Humor is the No. 15 horse and opens at 30 to 1 coming off a win at the Sunland Derby.
Win Win Win
Win Win Win is the No. 16 horse and another opening at 30 to 1 after a runner-up finish at the Blue Grass Stakes.
Country House will open at 30 to 1 coming out of the No. 17 gate. Trainer Bill Mott says the horse’s third at the Arkansas Derby can be blamed on the sloppy track at Oaklawn Park.
Spinoff is the No. 19 horse and will come in at 30 to 1 after a runner-up finish in the Louisiana Derby. The Todd Pletcher-trained horse gave up the lead down the stretch there.
Plus Que Parfait
Plus Que Parfait is the No. 4 horse. The horse finished first in the UAE Derby, but Dubai-based horses have exactly zero wins in the Kentucky Derby. This Brendan Walsh-trained horse is opening at 50 to 1.
Gray Magician is the No. 18 horse and another 50 to 1 longshot. Gray Magician finished runner-up in the UAE Derby.
Master Fencer is the No. 20 horse. This Japanese invite will come in at 50 to 1. Master Fencer has never won a stakes race and co-owner Katsumi Yoshizawa has admitted he’s just happy to be there.
Where to watch the 2019 Kentucky Derby in PA
The Kentucky Derby will air nationally on NBC this year.
Coverage of the race runs from 2:30 p.m. ET through 7:30 p.m. on NBC. Riders will mount the horses just after 6:30 p.m. and the race will begin at 6:50 p.m.
The NBC Sports Live website and NBC Sports App will also host a live stream the race. The app is available via the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Box, Samsung, and Microsoft.
Additionally, Churchill Downs’ Twin Spires horse racing app and the official betting partner of the Kentucky Derby will host its own livestream.
NBC affiliates in Pennsylvania expected to carry the race include:
- Erie – WICU-TV 12
- Johnstown – WJAC-TV 6
- Lancaster – WGAL 8
- Philadelphia – WCAU 10
- Pittsburgh – WPXI 11
- Wilkes-Barre – WBRE-TV 28
The 2019 Kentucky Derby is just the first leg of the American Triple Crown. It is followed by the Preakness Stakes on May 18 and the Belmont Stakes on June 8.