Could an ‘Improbable’ horse win the Kentucky Derby? Anything can happen at the ‘Run for the Roses,’ so get all the info on Improbable ahead of the 2019 race.
With the earliest of odds putting Improbable at 5-1, per CBS Sports, the chances of this horse winning the 2019 Kentucky Derby are…not that improbable. The 3-year-old chestnut colt has come in second during his last two races, so he’s itching to taste sweet victory. When the “run of the roses” takes place on May 4, will Improbable defy his own name to outrun the rest of the pack? Before the trumpets call the horses to the posts, here’s what you need to know about this thoroughbred horse:
1. His parents are Rare Event and City Zip. Improbable’s pedigree may not be earth-shattering, but perhaps this means he’ll carve out his own legacy instead of living in the shadow of his parents. His sire is City Zip, who won a handful of minor races in 2000. He came third in the 2001 Florida Derby, per Horse Racing Nation. His dam, Rare Event, never cracked the Top 3 in her racing career.
2. He has yet to pick up a win in 2019. Improbable comes to Churchill Downs with a 3-2-0 record in five starts. He missed out on the Arkansas Derby by a length, losing out to current favorite Omaha Beach. He won his first three races, including the Los Alamitos Cash Call Futurity in December 2018. However, he also fell second in the Rebel Stakes, as Long Range Toddy (another Kentucky Derby Racer) scored the upset.
3. He has a championship-caliber team behind him. Improbable chances of victory aren’t so improbable when considering that his owners are WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and Starlight Racing. This group, according to the Courier-Journal, teamed up in 2018 with a little horse named Justify. After winning the Kentucky Derby, Justify went on to win the Triple Crown. Improbable’s trainer, Bob Baffert, is also the second-winningest trainer at the Kentucky Derby. He won with Silver Charm in 1997, Real Quiet in 1998, War Emblem in 2002, American Pharoah in 2015 and Justify in 2018.
4. He’s giving people a case of déjà vu. “He’s feeling good, and I think (trainer) Bob (Baffert) has him right where he wants him,” Kentucky Derby CEO and president Elliott Walden said at the end of Improbable’s final workout, per the Paulick Report. “He reminds me of Super Saver when he came in here off Arkansas. The three weeks were a good three weeks.” Super Saver won the “race for the roses” in 2010, giving WinStar its first Kentucky Derby win.
WATCH: Improbable breezed 5F in 1:00.60 this morning with workmate Embolden in 1:01.20
— Kentucky Derby (@KentuckyDerby) April 28, 2019
5. The Kentucky Derby will be a family affair for his jockey. Improbable’s jockey for the Kentucky Derby is Irad Ortiz Jr., 26, who has won several racing honors, including the Shoemaker award, an ESPY for Best Jockey, and an Eclipse Award in 2018 for the most outstanding rider in North America. He’ll be going up against his younger brother, Jose Ortiz, 25, who will be riding Tacitus. Jose won the Eclipse Award in 2017 for the best jockey in North America. Which brother will come out on top at the Kentucky Derby?