Concert Tour won his debut by 3-½ lengths at Santa Anita last Friday. Other than workouts, Bezos hasn’t entered a starting gate yet. So why are both horses now among the Kentucky Derby futures favorites?
Two words: Bob Baffert.
Yes, the magic words for 3-year-old Derby hopefuls cast its usual spell on horseplayers. Concert Tour debuted on Circa Sports’ board at 15/1. He’s 20/1 at William Hill Nevada. Bezos opened at 13/1 at Circa and 30/1 at William Hill.
That brings the Baffert pair into the same high-rent odds neighborhood as their stablemate, Life Is Good. He remains Circa’s favorite, despite floating up to 11/1. Life Is Good remains at 8/1 at William Hill.
Concert Tour Now Playing On a Derby Board
In Concert Tour’s defense, he’s no longer an unraced maiden. Not after he broke his maiden as the even-money favorite in a six-furlong maiden race. The son of 2007 Derby winner Street Sense by a Tapit mare breezed to victory behind an 88 Beyer Speed Figure.
Bezos, meanwhile, remains on the sidelines. In a Thursday workout, he did cover five furlongs in 1:01. But, the $400,000 Empire Maker colt brings Baffert with him, along with the same multiple-stable, powerhouse connections who brought you Authentic. Plug in all those variables and you understand why the money is coming in.
They are two of the 14 newcomers to the futures boards, which now has a “new” name atop one board. That would be former favorite Essential Quality, who dropped to 7/1 at William Hill.
Even Baffert Also-Rans Get Betting Love
Baffert’s spell on bettors even covers non-winners. Take Hozier, who finished fourth out of five horses in the same race Concert Tour captured. A $625,000 purchase by those same Authentic/Bezos connections, Hozier went off as the 9/5 second favorite. He melted down in the stretch, finishing 14 lengths behind his stablemate.
No matter to Circa and William Hill. Circa made the Pioneerof the Nile colt 75/1. William Hill debuted him at 35/1.
And yet, William Hill doesn’t have Proxy on its board. The two-time winner and Tapit progeny finished a solid second by a length to Midnight Bourbon in last Saturday’s Lecomte Stakes at the Fair Grounds. Risk Supervisor Paul Zilm, who handles Circa’s Derby futures, took notice. He debuted Proxy at 65/1.
2021 Kentucky Derby Futures-Top Contenders
|Circa Sports||William Hill Nevada|
|Life Is Good||11/1||8/1|
|Rock Your World||35/1||—|
For most of the early winter, no horse cracked the 500/1 barrier on either board. No longer. True punters can take a 750/1 flier on Erawan at Circa. He’s zero for his last four outings, finishing fifth by six lengths in the Black-Type Stakes Spectacular Bid at Laurel Park on Saturday. On the bright side, Erawan tied his career-best Equibase Speed Figure of 78, last clocked in his maiden-breaking debut last November.
Seven others on Circa’s board are 600/1.