Why Zozos Should Be Your Kentucky Derby Pick

The 2022 Kentucky Derby is May 7th, and 20 of the top 3-year-olds will Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs. Which horses should you bet on at TVG?

The 2022 Kentucky Derby is on May 7th with post time at 6:57 p.m. ET. Using TVG projections and Horse Racing Nation as a guide, here are the horse profiles for America’s biggest and most popular race.

New players, get your first win-type wager on a single horse in any race at any track risk-free up to $200 with TVG: Bet the Derby!

As always, check the program for racing information after the post position draw on May 2nd, and monitor the weather and track conditions.

(I will reference Equibase's Speed Figure and BRIS and Beyer speed figures, which tells you how fast a horse has been running in each of its races -- adjusted for track, distances, and conditions.)

#19 Zozos

Morning Line Odds: 20/1
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Trained by Brad Cox and ridden by jockey Manny Franco, Zozos was installed at 20/1 on the morning line odds breaking from post No. 19. Zozos is lightly-raced with just three starts. But in his only stakes start, he finished runner-up after pressing the pace in the Louisiana Derby. The winner of that race was a leading Kentucky Derby favorite, Epicenter.

Zozos has improved and matured in his starts, and his trainer believes he has the best shot to handle the classic 1 1/4 mile distance out of a trio of runners that includes Tawny Port and Cyberknife. This is a talented colt, and Zozos' rapid improvement includes showing a strong turn of foot two races back and a tantalizing BRIS Late Pace figure of 111.

He rates as a top longshot to watch, according to Horse Racing Nation. Should he break well from the far outside and get settled mid-pack, then he may be able to overcome the odds and find his way to hit a piece of the board for a potential exacta, trifecta, or superfecta payoff.

Zozos best Beyer Speed Figure of 98 does meet proven criteria in determining a Derby contender and winner. But his 94 BRIS Speed Rating comes up short in determining potential success in the Derby.

History shows that 27 of the last 30 Kentucky Derby winners (90.0%) have entered the race with a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of at least 95. Also, 18 of the past 22 Kentucky Derby winners (81.8%) had a BRIS Speed Rating of at least 100 prior to the race.