Texas Derby Predictions, Picks, Odds (Lone Star Park)

Written by: Brian Zipse
Updated October 14, 2022
7 min read

Texas Derby Odds and Post Position

Check out our predictions and odds for the 2022 Texas Derby at Lone Star Park! Odds for the race taken from TwinSpires Sportsbook!

PP Horse Odds Jockey Trainer
J Alvarez M J Williams
R Gutierrez D O’Neill
I Castillo S Asmussen
S Elliot S Asmussen
S Leon D O’Neill
V Espinoza J Sadler
F Geroux R Baltas
8 A. P.’S SECRET 3/1
E Gonzalez S Joseph Jr

Texas Derby Predictions and Best Bets

Here are my plays ($60 in total)

$6 Exacta Part Wheel – A. P.’s Secret over Strike Hard, Cover Me Up, Got Thunder and Presidential = $24

$4 Exacta Part Wheel – Strike Hard, Cover Me Up, Got Thunder and Presidential over A. P.’s Secret = $16

$3 Exacta Part Wheel – Presidential over Strike Hard, Cover Me Up, Got Thunder and A. P.’s Secret = $12

$2 Exacta Part Wheel – Strike Hard, Cover Me Up, Got Thunder and A. P.’s Secret over Presidential = $8

If you’re playing only to win, go with my top pick A. P.’s Secret (3/1)

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Texas Derby Race

Coming off a solid fourth-place finish behind the likes of Mo Donegal and Early Voting, A. P.’s Secret could be the one chosen as the favorite in a wide-open edition of the $300,000 Texas Derby on a holiday Monday at Lone Star Park.

The son of Cupid had two wins and a second in his first three starts before graduating to graded stakes company, where he had a troubled trip in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth, before his good effort in the Grade 2 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct last time.

Chief among his rivals is the three-time winner Strike Hard, who defeated him in a Gulfstream Park allowance race back in December.

The Flashback colt was seventh in the Grade 1 Florida Derby two starts back, but comes in off a nice allowance win last time in South Florida and was second to Simplification in the Mucho Macho Man Stakes earlier this year.

Cover Me Up is another who should get plenty of attention in the 1 1/16-mile Texas Derby. The improving son of Mastery was a solid second to Creative Minister last time in a Churchill Downs allowance race.

That performance was flattered when that one came back to run a good third in the Preakness Stakes. Cover Me Up has run first or second in four of his last five races.

It took Got Thunder five tries to break his maiden out in Southern California, but the son of Arrogate has been competitive in all four tries on dirt while running against good horses for trainer John Sadler.

Texas Derby Predictions and Race Analysis

A. P.’s Secret

This son of Cupid has been a consistent performer for trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr. and still looks to be on the improve. A first-out winner at Gulfstream Park in November, his only poor result came when he was bothered in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth.

Last time he chased the Preakness winner Early Voting in the Grade 2 Wood Memorial, and although he was no match, he stayed on pretty well to finish a competitive fourth in a strong race.

He is drawn to get a good stalking trip from the outside on Monday and should appreciate the class drop. He is the top pick.

Strike Hard

An obvious threat in here, this one has run against more good horses than anyone in the field. The son of Flashback has taken care of business nicely three times, all of which came at a flat mile. In longer races, he faced stakes company each time and was not up to the task.

The competition is a little lighter in this one than he has faced in previous stakes attempts, but the feeling is that the top pick has likely improved quite a bit since their last meeting. Perhaps the biggest threat to the top pick, he is a must-use in the exotics.

Cover Me Up

Trained by Richard Baltas, this one could be one of the biggest dangers to my top pick. A good maiden winner four starts back at Santa Anita, his first try against winners was not good, but since leaving Southern California, he has run two good races in Kentucky.

In both, he flashed serious early speed before settling for the runner-up position. In the last one, he was a good second behind Creative Minister, who is one of the rising stars in the division. He should be out there early, but I do think he is more likely passed in the stretch rather than going all the way.

Got Thunder

On the one hand, it does not look great that he took so long to break his maiden, but on the other hand, he was running against some pretty tough horses in some of those defeats and was always competitive.

The son of Arrogate has run well in all four of his races on dirt and got the job done last time in his fourth try on the main track. He’s got good tactical speed and is a candidate to improve with time. For those reasons, I will use him in the exotics, but he is not one of my top picks in the Texas Derby.

Win the Day

The first of two from trainer Doug O’Neill, this son of Midshipman has one win in four career starts. Only two of them came on the dirt and included an easy maiden win. Last time he was asked to run against some big boys in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby.

He never threatened and finished ahead of just one other in the six-horse field. This spot represents a class drop, which could make him dangerous, but I really don’t know if I saw enough of anything in that spot to believe he can win a stakes race one race later.


This Steve Asmussen-trained son of Pioneerof the Nile broke through last time with a nice allowance score at Oaklawn Park. Having shown some talent earlier in his five-race career, I take it as a nice sign that he is maturing and learning how to be a good horse.

Fifth behind good horses in the Grade 3 Lecomte back in January, I believe he may be much more ready to take on stakes caliber horses this time around. The odds should be right on Monday. I think he is live in here and will be used in all of my tickets.

King Ottoman

This well bred son of Curlin is the second from the barn of Steve Asmussen. Although he is still a maiden after three career starts, he does look to have the potential to be a nice horse. He’s competed pretty well each time and has faced some decent horses.

He certainly has every right to move forward with more experience. Having said that, I am not ready to back him here, running against far more experienced runners on Monday at Lone Star Park.

Fowler Blue

The second from the barn of Doug O’Neill, this Curlin to Mischief gelding has won only 2-of-10 lifetime and both wins came against claiming horses. Fourth in all three previous stakes tries, this will be his toughest test yet.

Most recently, he finished a well-beaten fifth behind Armagnac in a Santa Anita allowance race. I find him hard to recommend in this spot.

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How to Watch the Texas Derby

Texas Derby Race Information
What Texas Derby
Location Lone Star Park
Time Monday, May 30 — 8:01 pm Eastern time
How to Watch TVG
Purse $300,000

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Brian Zipse

Horse Racing Betting Analyst

Horse Racing
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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.
Nationality: American
Education: Bachelor of Communications
Favourite Sportsbook: FanDuel Sportsbook
Favourite Casino: BetMGM Casino
15 years
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