Kentucky Derby Trifecta Picks, Advice and Tips

Here are my 2020 Kentucky Derby Trifecta picks. I’ve made my picks for a winning trifecta part wheel. Hitting a straight trifecta is extremely difficult. It’s better to wheel multiple horses into your trifecta bet. It’s a smart way to win more money with less risk.

Tiz The Law was made the morning line favorite as of Sept. 1, 2020. It’s the first time since 1989 the favorite horse opened with a 3-5 line. Now, let’s review my trifecta picks for this year’s race!

2020 Kentucky Derby Part Wheel Keys

  • 1: Tiz The Law, Honor A P, Thousand Words
  • 2: Tiz The Law, Honor A P, Authentic
  • 3: Tiz The Law, Thousand Words, Authentic, NY Traffic

Total Cost: $18, $1 per combination

2020 Kentucky Derby Futures Odds - All Available Horses
Last Updated September 23, 2020 2:40 pm
Outcomebovada Bovada
1. Jackie's Warrior
2. Freedom Fighter
3. Sittin On Go
4. Dr. Schivel
5. Real Talk
6. Prisoner
7. Founder
8. Calibrate
9. Whiskey Double
10. Team Merchants
11. Spielberg
12. Reinvestment Risk
13. Vittorio
14. Super Stock
15. Sonic Brees
16. Mutasaabeq
17. Momos
18. Midnight Bourbon
19. Game Day Play
20. Weston

Ways to bet Trifectas

There are 3 ways to bet trifectas. The most common is the straight trifecta. It’s also the most difficult to reliably win. Trifecta Boxes and Wheels are solid alternatives. You can add more than 3 horses to your trifecta bet. This increases the likelihood of winning with a higher investment upfront.

The following video explains how to place a wheel bet. The procedure is the same for exactas and superfectas. Watch the entire video for help with other bets!

  1. Straight Trifecta Bet – Pick 3 horses to finish in the top 3 positions. Final order matters.
  2. Trifecta Box Bet – Pick any number of horses to finish in the top 3 positions. Final order does not matter.
  3. Trifecta Part Wheel Bet – Select horses to key into each position: first, second and third. Final order does matter depending on how you key each horse.

Efficiency Matters

Trifecta Boxes are more likely to win because final order does not matter. But a box is less efficient than a wheel because you end up buying more combinations than you need.

Trifecta Part Wheels are harder to win because you must select and key horses correctly. However a part wheel is more efficient than a box. You will invest less bankroll to potentially win more money.

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Kentucky Derby Trifecta Betting Advice

I recommend a 5 horse Trifecta Part Wheel, keying 3 horses in the first and second position, then 4 horses in the third. Why?

A 5 horse Trifecta Box costs $60, $1 per combination. But a 5 horse Trifecta Part Wheel using my recommendations is only $18, $1 per combination.

That means our 4th horse must finish second or third. I add a less-likely 5th horse to finish third, just to cover the bases.

You’ll be making a more efficient bet with higher profit potential. And you’ll be way ahead of the novices betting it all on one horse!

Picking 5 horses to finish first, second or third shouldn’t be hard. Plus you get bonus horse for the third key.

How to Key Horses in a Trifecta Part Wheel

Review this clip from our “How to Bet on Horses” video tutorial. I’ll discuss this wager and each horse below.

Let’s assemble our Trifecta Part Wheel keys from the table above. As of writing, Tiz The Law is the heavy favorite. He’ll be put in all 3 keys.

2020 Kentucky Derby Trifecta Picks - Tiz The Law
2020 Kentucky Derby Trifecta Picks – Tiz The Law

Tiz the Law has been undefeated since February 1, 2020, when he won the G3 Holy Bull stakes. Since then, he’s won the G1 Florida Derby, Belmont Stakes and most recently the G1 Travers Stakes on August 8, 2020.

Tiz the Law’s Belmont Stakes win was convincing. He ran with the leaders for most of the race, pulling away as he approached the homestretch for a decisive victory over the field. No other horses challenged him at the finish.

Now let’s pick 1 more horse for our first and second keys.

Kentucky Derby 2020 Trifecta Picks - Honor A P
Kentucky Derby 2020 Trifecta Picks – Honor A P

Honor A P last raced at Del Mar on August 1, 2020, where he finished second at the Shared Belief Stakes. Prior to that, he won the G1 Santa Anita Derby on June 6, 2020. On March 7, 2020 he placed second in the G2 San Felipe Stakes, also at Santa Anita. This Saturday he’ll face Thousand Words and Authentic again, who won the Shared Belief Stakes and San Felipe Stakes, respectively.

The Rest: Kentucky Derby Trifecta Picks

Now, a 3rd horse for our first and third keys. After, a 4th horse for the second and third keys. Finally, a 5th horse for the third key only.

Thousand Words will be the 3rd horse found in our 1st and 3rd keys. He’s trained by Bob Baffert. He won the Shared Belief Stakes and was second at the July 4, 2020 Los Alamitos Derby.

Authentic will be the fourth horse found in our second and third keys. He’s Baffert’s second horse in the Kentucky Derby. He won this year’s G1 Haskell Stakes edging out NY Traffic. He finished behind behind race winner Honor A P at the Santa Anita Derby on June 6, 2020. Authentic had previously defeated Honor A P at the San Felipe Stakes in March 2020.

NY Traffic will be the fifth horse found in our third key. He has a string of second place finishes heading into the Derby: Haskell Stakes, Matt Winn and Louisiana Derby. His last win was a Gulfstream Park Allowance on January 11, 2020.

MSW means “Maiden Special Weight”. It’s a race reserved for horses who have never won a race.

2020 Kentucky Derby Part Wheel Keys

  • 1: Tiz The Law, Honor A P, Thousand Words
  • 2: Tiz The Law, Honor A P, Authentic
  • 3: Tiz The Law, Thousand Words, Authentic, NY Traffic

Total Cost: $18, $1 per combination

How to Place a Kentucky Derby Trifecta Wheel Bet?
Visit our recommended online race books below. Wait until the field is set and each horse is assigned a starting position. Fill out your Trifecta Wheel ticket with each horse’s corresponding number. Then sit back and get rich!

Good luck from Ron Halfback and the gang!

Tables and Reference

See Also
Online Horse Betting Sites
Win Place Show Betting
USA Race Book Deposit Methods, Kentucky Derby

More Trifecta betting information, cost tables and advice:

  1. Trifecta Wheel Betting – Includes trifecta wheel equation, calculations and cost tables.
  2. Trifecta Box Betting – Discussion of Trifecta Box Bet, cost calculation and tables

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