The Derby is just part of a highly successful betting career for Demling, who also nailed his ninth Preakness winner in 14 years at Pimlico last May. He followed that up by predicting Justify’s groundbreaking victory in the Belmont Stakes, as well as calling the winners of the Haskell Invitational, Pennsylvania Derby and Lecomte Stakes, just to name a few. He also hit last year’s Arkansas Derby and Louisiana Derby.
Now, with the 2019 Kentucky Derby lineup taking shape, Demling is sharing his early picks at SportsLine. We can tell you Demling wants no part of Maximum Security, one of the top Vegas favorites at 6-1 Kentucky Derby odds. Maximum Security is fresh off a win in the Florida Derby, where he beat Bodexpress and Code of Honor on the 1 1/8-mile course. “He won the Florida Derby on the front end, but it won’t be that easy in the Kentucky Derby 2019 against some of the top horses in the world,” Demling told SportsLine.
The Kentucky Derby 2019 is 1 1/4 miles in length, but Maximum Security has never run that distance. In fact, his first three career races were seven furlongs or shorter, and the Florida Derby was the furthest he’s gone. Plus, his trainer, Jason Servis, hasn’t won a Kentucky Derby since 2004 with Smarty Jones. There are far better values in a loaded 2019 Kentucky Derby lineup than the 6-1 premium you’ll need to pay for Maximum Security.
Instead, Demling is high on War of Will, a long shot at 16-1 Kentucky Derby odds. An injury during the Louisiana Derby could keep the masses away from War of Will, but trainer Mark Casse has said his horse looks like his old self and is ready to turn heads at Churchill Downs. Casse has made six starts at the Kentucky Derby, with his best finish being a fourth place run in 2017 with Classic Empire.
War of Will is highly familiar with Churchill Downs, as the three-year-old colt had a maiden special weight win at this track last November by five lengths, his first career victory. From there, he posted two straight wins at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans, winning the Lecomte Stakes and Risen Star Stakes, running the 1 1/16 miles in the latter race in 1:44.59. Jose Vasquez had War of Will galloping on Thursday, with even more work expected over the weekend. Casse will reportedly head to at Churchill Downs on Friday.
Demling is especially high on a monumental long shot that would net any backer a colossal windfall. Demling is sharing which horse it is, along with his entire projected leaderboard.
Omaha Beach 7-2
Maximum Security 6-1
Game Winner 7-1
By My Standards 14-1
War of Will 16-1
Code of Honor 18-1
Win Win Win 25-1
Long Range Toddy 50-1
Cutting Humor 60-1
Country House 100-1
Gray Magician 100-1
Master Fencer 100-1
Plus Que Parfait 100-1
The 2019 Kentucky Derby (officially, the 2019 Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve) will be the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby, and will take place on Saturday, May 4, 2019, in Louisville, Kentucky. The field is open to 20 horses, who qualify for the race by earning points on the 2019 Road to the Kentucky Derby. The purse for 2019 was increased from US$2 million to US$3 million. The Derby is held annually on the first Saturday in May, at the end of the two-week-long Kentucky Derby Festival. It is a Grade I stakes race for three-year-old Thoroughbreds at a distance of 1 1⁄4 miles (2.0 km), and has been run at Churchill Downs racetrack since its inception in 1875.