2018 Kentucky Derby Need-to-Know Guide

All the links you need, plus one you don’t.

All the 2018 Derby links you need…

Where: Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky

When: Saturday, May 5

Post time: 6:34 PM

Purse: $2 million

Distance: One mile and a quarter over dirt

How to watch: NBC will have televised broadcast from 2:30 PM EST until 7:30 PM EST on race day. Live stream is available via NBC Sports Live Extra, but a cable subscription is required. Twinspires.com will stream the race; an account is required.

Stats: For details about each horse, including racing history, pedigree, post position and photos, check out KentuckyDerby.com. For the quick and dirty guide, check out our field preview (and vote in our poll!)

Picks worth pondering: Forbes, Bleacher Report, Washington Post, New York Times

Online betting: If you’re looking to up the ante, a variety of online betting sites are at your service. We recommend Twinspires.com for ease of use – it has all the bells and whistles for experienced bettors, but it’s simple enough for novices to use as well. Brisnet.com is another useful resource. Gamble responsibly.

…plus one you don’t.

Actually, we have to hand it to NBC Sports this year for teaming up with Buzzfeed for some unique Derby coverage. Laugh if you will, but any press is good press, and a social media blitz might be just what we need to get racing to more mainstream fans.

Horse Nation Staff Picks, Plus Hats (Because Why Not)

Maria: I’m going with Free Drop Billy. He’s being ridden by Robby Albarado, who was one of my late dad’s favorite jockeys. I’ve actually picked a couple of long shots over the years that he rode in the money. I’d do an exacta box with Free Drop Billy and Vino Rosso.

Vino Rosso has a good trainer, jockey and breeding, and he’s in a good spot if he gets a good break, not to get sammiched into that whole stampede.

Now that I say that, I guess I need to go bet.

As for for my hat, I’d love to wear a big hat that had a horse track around the brim with little horses running on my head. Yep, that’s what I’d wear.

Meagan: My pick for the Derby is Free Drop Billy for three reasons:

1. He is freakin’ CUTE.

2. I really like the way all of Dale Romans’ training team operates.

3. The story behind his name is pretty funny:

Introducing the FIRST Free Drop Billy and a side of 'what's a legal free drop?' debate. Feel free to chime in!

Posted by Romans Racing Stables, Inc on Wednesday, May 2, 2018

My Kentucky Derby hat would be classily outrageous — if that is such a thing. I am thinking red in color with a nice big gold bow with a corgi in the center of it. #classy

Kristen: My head says Mendelssohn — literally, he has it all from ability to travel the world and win races, to versatility, to pedigree (Beholder AND Into Mischief’s half brother, whaaaat) — plus Mendelssohn is one of my favorite classical composers, so there’s that. #snob

But then I also found out that Flameaway is a chestnut Ontario-bred, and because I now own an OTTB I have to tell you all about it, and my OTTB Jobber is also a chestnut Ontario-bred and he’s the best horse in the world and super versatile and have I told you about my OTTB Jobber? Here’s a photo. Go Jobber! I mean Flameaway. Go Flameaway.

And I’d like to wear a Derby hat in the style of my personal icon, April Ludgate.

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