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Ohio Derby Odds: Two Phil’s Returns to Headline a Solid Field of Eight

Written by: Brian Zipse
Published June 21, 2023
11 min read

Ohio Derby Odds and Post Position

Check out our predictions and odds for the Ohio Derby at Thistledown! To see more betting opportunities, check out our Best Horse Racing Betting Sites and Apps.










K Carmouche

D O’Neill





K Gonzalez

L Loudin-Smith





F Geroux

B Cox





J Loveberry

L Rivelli





E Barbaran

J Skerrett





L Briceno

J Urieta





E Zayas

S Joseph Jr





C Torres

K McPeek

*Odds provided by author Brian Zipse.

Ohio Derby Predictions and Best Bets

Here are my plays ($60 in total)

  • $20 Trifecta Part Wheel - Two Phil’s over Bishops Bay over Lord Miles and Hayes Strike  = $40 
  • $10 Trifecta Part Wheel - Bishops Bay over Two Phil’s over Lord Miles and Hayes Strike  = $20
  • If you're playing only to win, go with my top pick Two Phil’s (7/5).    



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Ohio Derby Thistledown Predictions

Ohio Derby Predictions and Race Analysis

Two Phil’s

Trained by Larry Rivelli, this son of Hard Spun has been top since breaking his maiden at Colonial Downs in his second career start. A stakes winner at two different tracks last year, he added a third win in stakes company impressively two starts back at Turfway Park. 

Validating that big effort, he chased a very fast pace in the Kentucky Derby, took over early in the stretch, and held well to finish a good runner-up to Mage. Given a short rest since then, he has continued to look good in the mornings at his home base of Hawthorne. 

He will have to chase a talented foe in Bishops Bay on Saturday, but I am expecting another big performance. He is the top pick.

Bishops Bay

This Uncle Mo colt faced and defeated some talented horses in his first two career starts and then took a step forward last time when he battled from gate to wire to just miss to Arcangelo in the Grade 3 Peter Pan. 

When that one came back a few weeks later to win the final leg of the Triple Crown, it made the effort of Bishops Bay look even better.

Once again, the Brad Cox-trainee should be involved in the early pace here, and if allowed to relase at all early, he should be very tough to get past. He is clearly the top threat to Two Phil’s in the Ohio Derby.

Lord Miles

This son of Curlin showed some flashes of potential early in his career, but really put it all together when rallying to win a three-horse photo at big odds in the Grade 2 Wood Memorial. 

Unfortunately, he had to miss the Kentucky Derby due to a trainer suspension, but now he returns to attempt to validate his big win last time. 

Having narrowly bested the classy Hit Show in that win, he should not be discounted here. The most likely horse to make a run at the top two, he is in with a shot, but he’ll likely need an even bigger effort than last time to win this.

Henry Q

This Doug O’Neill-trained runner stayed close to Bishops Bay early last time in the Peter Pan, before weakening to finish third, beaten almost nine lengths. 

Drawn to the rail on Saturday, the speedy son of Blame should make his presence felt in the early stages but will once again have to deal with the talented colt who he could not stick with last time. 

A romping stakes winner at Sunland Park in New Mexico three starts back, he should be respected, but once again I think Bishops Bay will make his life very difficult as he attempts to carry his speed around two turns.

Hayes Strike

Trained by Kenny McPeek, this Connect colt has already run in eight stakes races and has been competitive on several occasions. He was well beaten, but he did run second to Two Phil’s in last year’s Grade 3 Street Sense Stakes. 

More recently, he has won a pair of listed stakes races in his last three starts. In his victories in both the Private Terms and the Texas Derby, he rallied strongly in the stretch. 

I do believe that he is a notch below the top two in here, but he looks like a solid threat to pick up the pieces and fill out the trifecta.

Agnello’s Dream

In 13 career races, this son of Always Dreaming only has a pair of wins, which came consecutively in December at Mahoning Valley. 

He’s winless in seven starts this year but has finished in the top three in four of those starts. Having said that, they all came against much cheaper competition than he will face here. 

The first of three Ohio-based longshots, he may be the most consistent of the trio, but still faces a very tall task in this Grade 3 affair.

Last Cookie

Bred by Godolphin and previously trained by Brad Cox, this son of Bernardini did not live up to stable expectations and was claimed in his third and final start at 2. 

He’s yet to win for his new barn in three starts this year but did run a much-improved race last time to finish second in a local allowance race. 

Improvement or not, he still appears to fall a far cry short of what will be required to seriously compete in this half-million-dollar race.


Based in Ohio, this son of Tapiture will make his stakes debut on Saturday and has found a very difficult spot. 

Once a winner in six career starts, he has not come real close in three consecutive allowance races over the Thistledown track since breaking his maiden at Mahoning Valley in April. 

I’m all for the local horses taking a shot at their home track’s signature race, but based on his performances to date, he seems overmatched in this field.



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How to Watch the Ohio Derby

  • What: Ohio Derby (Grade 3)
  • Location: Thistledown
  • Time: Saturday, June 24 -- 6:20 pm Eastern time
  • How to Watch: FanDuel TV
  • Purse: $500,000
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Brian Zipse

281 Articles

Taken to the races at a very young age, Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Professionally, his work has been published on several leading industry sites. Brian served as the Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, where he still writes a regular column and hosts the popular weekly webcast HorseCenter.

Email: [email protected]

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