Horse Racing Odds: 2024 Wood Memorial Bets On Road To The Kentucky Derby

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Written By Dave Bontempo | Last Updated
Wood memorial odds horse racing

Don’t blink. The $750,000 Wood Memorial has fashioned three straight exhilarating finishes, two involving whopping longshots. Will bettors see another? Let’s take a look at what might happen as we examine Wood Memorial bets.

Bettors will keep that in mind before Saturday’s 1 1/8-mile Road to the Kentucky Derby battle at Aqueduct Race Track. A 13-horse field seeks guaranteed entry to the May 4 Run for the Roses. Post time is 4:07 ET.

This race offers Kentucky Derby qualifying points to eligible horses who finish in the top five on a scale of 100-50-25-15-10. The Kentucky Derby is limited to 20 starters. That makes this the final attempt to reach the big race for some horses on the points bubble.

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2024 Wood Memorial Morning Line Odds

Here’s a look at the field from Wednesday’s draw. Odds become official at post time, per pari-mutuel regulations.

1Resilience6-1Bill MottJohn Velazquez
2El Grande O8-1Leslie RiceDylan Davis
3Lonesome Boy50-1Hugo PadillaAdam Bowman
4Deterministic7-5Christophe ClementJoe Rosario
5Protective30-1Todd PletcherKendrick Carmouche
6Evening News20-1Michael PinoJareth Loveberry
7Merit20-1Saffie Joseph JrEdwin Rodriguez
8Elysian Meadows15-1William MottJose Lezcano
9Tuscan Sky4-1Todd Pletcher Manny Franco
10Gettysburg Address30-1Dallas StewartEmmanuel Esquivel
11Society Man30-1Danny Gargan Luis Rivera
12Deposition50-1Uriah St. LewisDexter Haddock
13Uncle Heavy8-1Robert Reid Mychel Sanchez

There was no race in 2020 because of COVID, but the stretch runs of the last three Woods have been spectacular.

In 2023, Lord Miles won a duel of three horses across the track, nipping 8-5 favorite Hit Show to win at a whopping 59-1.

In 2022, Mo Donegal came from several lengths back to nip Early Voting at the wire. Little did we know we were seeing the eventual Belmont Stakes winner catching the future Preakness champion.

In 2021 the biggest upset in the history of the race happened. Bourbonic came from dead last around the final turn to win a photo at 72-1.

One thing all winners had in common was prevailing from well off the pace. Aqueduct offers a fair track for closers.

Heavy midweek rains are expected to dry out by Saturday. Check track conditions before making Wood Memorial bets. If they are listed as “good” or “sealed,” closers have an even better opportunity to win.

Wood Memorial Bets: Horse Profiles

1. Resilience (6-1)

Aptly named. Gave a great effort in the Risen Star on the front end in the slop. Had second gunning for home but was outkicked by Sierra Leone and finished a game fourth.

Probably won’t have the slop element on Saturday. Could be prominent on the front end, although that pattern has not been fruitful in recent years.

2. El Grande O (8-1)

The Gotham set up perfectly for him. He took the lead around the turn in the slop and had Kendrick Carmouche, the architect of the Bourbonic upset, in the irons. But Carmouche ran out of horse. El Grande 0 was empty and finished third. Also could not finish in the Withers.

Can he get a little more in the tank? Figures to be there, but may have trouble finishing the deal.

Needs the points. He has 30, good for 19th on the list, but others with lower totals have opportunities. Any spot in the top five would help him tremendously.

3. Lonesome Boy (50-1)

Has heart, evidenced by victory in the City of Brotherly Love Stakes at 10-1. Looks like he can cover the distance.

But that stakes race was for $75,000 at Parx Racing. Those two factors almost never work out in New York.

Stalking style.

4. Deterministic (7-5)

Terrific ride to win the Gotham, closing from about five lengths back to prevail in the slop.

Two career tries. Two wins. One came at 7 furlongs at Saratoga. The other was at 1 mile at Aqueduct. Here comes a two-turn challenge.

The style of the race and the track perfectly fit him. Major threat. Has a prominent best Beyer Speed Figure of 93.

5. Protective (30-1)

Fourth at maiden special weights at Tampa Bay. You may be wondering why he’s in this race.

Me too.

Todd Pletcher and Carmouche are a good combination, but the horse has too much to prove.

6. Evening News (20-1)

Nice little 1-mile allowance victory at Turfway Park in wire-to-wire fashion. He prevailed at 6-1 after being allowed to dawdle through a half-mile in 48.74. Had Luan Machado, the leading jockey at Turfway Park, in the irons. Decisively toppled 6-5 favorite Gettysburg Address, who ran third.

One likes the fact he comes off a two-turn race and figures to break alertly. Class and pace skepticism are strong, however.

7. Merit (20-1)

Could not deliver the goods in allowance level at Gulfstream Park despite having the lead to himself. Ran a game second, but was overpowered by Conquest Warrior for the final quarter of a mile.

Figures to be a pace factor, yet not be at the same level as these others.

Just don’t tell that to Saffie Joseph Jr. The ambitious Gulfstream Park trainer just got second in the Florida Derby with 25-1 bomb Catalytic, also the 7-horse.

8. Elysian Meadows (15-1)

Distant fourth in the Sam F. Davis at Tampa Bay Downs. Beaten handily by No More Time and Agate Road.

May have the right style for this race as a dead closer, but would need much to fall right.

Sam F. Davis purse of $250,000 is similar to that of the Gotham ($300,000). That alone could put him on the fringes.

9. Tuscan Sky (4-1)

Perfect at 2-for-2, but the last was an allowance race in the slop at Fair Grounds with only three horses. The field multiplies several times over here.

Showed stalking ability in his last win and gets his show at the stakes world. Has a 95 Beyer Speed Figure, tops in this race. New York bettors are savvy and saw him win Aqueduct debut. They probably won’t let the price go too high on him.

10. Gettysburg Address (30-1)

Could not get past Evening News, whom he will see here, in Turfway Park allowance race, finishing third.

This is a big step up and doesn’t look like the right spot.

11. Society Man (30-1)

Has the closing style. Does he have the class?

The son of Good Magic rallied from 10 lengths off to win in maiden company. Before that, he was nowhere to be seen in the Withers in February.

Top Beyer is 82, not the formula for success here. Backers would hope the race falls apart for him.

12. Deposition (50-1)

Was sixth in the Gotham and while he often gives a reasonable account of himself, is usually pegged for the middle of the board at best.

13. Uncle Heavy (8-1)

Stole the Withers from a you-have-no-business-winning position, a deep stalk that would normally get a horse up for second. But when El Grande 0 could not finish the job, Uncle Heavy was the heavy, nipping him at the wire.

Great effort, and comes back to a race perfectly suited for his style. He figures. Also needs the qualifying points.  He has 20, seven behind the cutoff.

Pace Considerations

There should be plenty of early speed with Resilience, El Grande 0, Evening News, and Merit pushing the envelope.

The closers should have enough to run at.

My Wood Memorial Bets

I’m impressed with Deterministic on this circuit and will take a win bet on him.

Uncle Heavy should close into this too. I’ll take a shot that they both hit the top three and will take a couple of $1 trifecta boxes with 4, 13, and a choice between the 2 (El Grande 0), the 1 (Resilience), the 9 (Tuscan Sky), and the 6 (Evening News).

I may take two combos for $12. Expected short price on Deterministic will make more than two choices too much of a spread.

Good luck with your Wood Memorial bets. I hope you bring a winner home.