With all the hullabaloo surrounding the Kentucky Derby, it’s easy to forget this weekend’s festivities last for a full weekend and include a whole two cards of other races to be held at Churchill Downs from May 4th through the 5th. The second-biggest race of this weekend happens on Friday as the 2018 Kentucky Oaks gets underway for 3-year-old fillies.
Best Betting Sites for the Kentucky Oaks
The Kentucky Oaks is a Grade 1 stakes and it too features high stakes racing as a prelude to the even bigger Kentucky Derby the following day. Friday’s big race features a $1 million purse and it too has a long history in US horse racing, having first been run way back in 1875.
Times have changed a bit since then and now we can bet on the Kentucky Oaks along with all the other Derby races this year from the comfort of home. The best online racebooks will be covering the Kentucky Oaks as well, and some sites are already taking bets on the winning horse.
Kentucky Oaks Schedule and Weather
The 2018 Kentucky Oaks is scheduled to go off on Friday with a post time of 6:12 PM ET. Race day television coverage will begin at 12 PM on May 4th with the Kentucky Oaks undercard shown on NBCSN. At 5 PM, coverage will switch to the Kentucky Oaks main event, also on NBSCN and will run until 6:30 PM.
After things wrap up for the day on Friday, Derby Day television will begin at 12 PM on May 5th for the Kentucky Derby on NBSCN. After that, coverage moves to NBC from 2:30 to 7:30 PM to show the Kentucky Derby itself.
The Kentucky Oaks weather outlook has improved over the last 24 hours or so. Previous weather reports predicted questionable weather with the possibility of storms, but Accuweather reports the threat for severe weather throughout the Ohio Valley is much lower than previously estimated.
However, there is still a chance that storms and rain could delay afternoon races. The potential for wet weather is still worth keeping in mind as we plan our Kentucky Oaks bets, but at least now it looks like there is a much better chance the weather situation won’t be a disaster.
Where to Bet on the Kentucky Oaks
Every major racing betting site in the US and abroad will be covering the Kentucky Oaks this year. US-licensed betting sites do not accept fixed-odds wagers on the race, but we can look at the projected odds below to get a sense of how each horse is shaping up in terms of price. When the race goes off, starting prices will be determined by the amount of money bet into the parimutuel pools at Churchill Downs.
If you’d rather lock in your prices now via fixed-odds bets, you can visit Bovada from the United States or Racebets.com from anywhere else to place futures on the Kentucky Oaks. You can also place starting-price bets at these sites if you’d rather take the starting price.
If you live in the USA and want to lock in your price now, I recommend:
If you live in the USA and want to bet at a site that is headquartered and licensed in the USA, I recommend:
If you live anywhere else, my top recommendations are still:
Kentucky Oaks Promotions
The one thing these sites all have in common is a welcome bonus for new customers. Whether you sign up at Bovada, BetAmerica or any of the international bookmakers, you can claim a welcome bonus by signing up for an account and making your first deposit. Every racebook online is offering welcome bonuses to entice new customers.
Promotions for USA Horseplayers
You can see our previous post about Kentucky Derby promotions for a brief overview of the welcome bonuses on offer to US customers. Although that post is geared more towards the Kentucky Derby, most of it still applies to the Kentucky Oaks.
Of all the US-friendly racebooks, TwinSpires has the widest variety of promos that apply to the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby. One promotion you can grab at TwinSpires this weekend is the Kentucky Oaks Bet Back offer.
The Bet Back offer allows you to place a win bet on a single horse to win the Kentucky Oaks (Race 11 at 6:12 PM). If your horse fails to win but finishes second, TwinSpires will give you your bet back for up to $10 back.
You can visit TwinSpires here to opt-in and read more.
Promotions for International Horseplayers
International betting sites also have a variety of promotions on offer, but recent regulatory changes initiated by the UK Gambling Commission make it difficult to know how much I can detail I can go into when it comes to promotions without violating one of the many regulations that deal with discussing promotional offers. What I can say is RaceBets.com tends to offer the best and most frequent promotions for horse racing.
If you’d like to consider some generous horse racing promotions, check out Racebets.com.
Current Kentucky Oaks Odds
A number of betting sites headquartered outside the USA have released the fixed-odds prices for all anticipated Kentucky Oaks runners.
|My Miss Lilly||+1000||12/1|
|Take Charge Paula||+1400||12/1|
Kentucky Oaks Betting Favorites and a Worthy Longshot
Monomoy Girl and Midnight Bisou come in as the consensus favorites with odds that are much shorter than the rest of the 14-horse field.
Monomoy Girl is perhaps the most anticipated runner of the bunch having won five of her last six. Her biggest win to date includes a victory at the Grade 1 Ashland on April 7th. Monomoy Girl drew post 14 on Monday, which was a bit of a letdown for her team.
Trainer Brad Cox said this on Monday:
“Well, it is what it is. We’ll come up with a game plan and run the play. That’s horse racing. She’s obviously a good filly and good horses overcome things. We’ll have to overcome the 14 hole and have the speed and everything to the inside of us. We’ll see if she can adjust.”
That’s not exactly inspiring, but Monomoy Girl is still a proven horse. In both of her 2018 races, she won by a combined eight lengths as the betting favorite in both.
Midnight Bisou has won three straight graded races in 2018 and comes in as a co-favorite out of post 10 on Friday. A 3 ½ length victory at the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks in April has bolstered her position as a serious contender and may even go off as the favorite on race day.
Co-owner Jeffrey Bloom said on Monday that he’s happy with the post position:
“We weren’t overly concerned about the post position. We didn’t want to have the 1 or the 2, didn’t really want to have the extreme outside. I think it’s a great opportunity for Mike Smith to be able to get comfortable in terms of letting the horses come out of there and seeing how the race unfolds.”
Anyone looking for an outside runner with more attractive odds may want to give Eskimo Kisses a serious look with odds of 14/1. Emily Gullikson of equine analytics company optixEQ says Eskim Kisses is “a long shot in here that deserves respect” who has “displayed the right progression and is moving forward coming into this race.”
Gullikson also believes her trainer and jockey are both skilled at managing horses coming into their own and that she has the overall quality needed to make a late run given any early pace scenario.
Others also believe in Eskimo Kisses’ ability to make late runs. Trainer Kenny McPeek had this to say about Eskimo Kisses:
“My filly is a come-from-behind filly anyway, so I’m not overly worried about her post position. She’s going to take back and get in a position to try and make one big run and that’s all we normally do anyways.’