2020 Florida Derby Betting Picks: The Best Longshots to Bet in Saturday’s Races at Gulfstream Park

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  • Who doesn't love betting a good longshot? There are a few horses that have long odds at Saturday's Florida Derby that warrant a bet, including two in the final race of the day (6:35 p.m. ET).
  • Sean Zerillo and Mike Conti dig deep to find the sleepers with betting value. They both like a 20-1 horse in one of the undercard races.
  • For the main race, Sean is focusing on a different 20-1 horse, while Mike will be betting Gouverneur Morris at 8-1.

The 2020 Florida Derby, one of the most prestigious Kentucky Derby prep races, will take place on Saturday, March 28 at 6:36 p.m. ET on NBCSN. Given the state of sports, and the world at large, the Florida Derby will likely generate an unusually big betting handle as more casual bettors looking for action will play the ponies.

One of the great things about horse racing is that there’s always an opportunity to cash a big ticket, whether it be on a win bet or by finding the right horse to hit the board in exotics like an exacta or trifecta.

Check out our staff’s favorite longshot picks below:


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2020 Florida Derby Odds

No. 1 As Seen on TV (12-1)
No. 2 Shivaree (30-1)
No. 3 Disc Jockey (20-1)
No. 4 Soros (30-1)
No. 5 Gouverneur Morris (8-1)
No. 6 Ajaweed (20-1)
No. 7 Tiz the Law (6-5)
No. 8 My First Granny (50-1)
No. 9 Independence Hall (9-2)
No. 10 Candy Tycoon (20-1)
No. 11 Sassy But Smart (50-1)
No. 12 Ete Indien (4-1)

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Florida Derby Longshot Picks

Sean Zerillo

The No. 10 Candy Tycoon (20-1) came running late after Ete Indien set the pace in the Fountain of Youth and he appears to be improving in two-turn races – while also showing the versatility to win on the front end or rally from off of the lead. Of the two, I’m higher on Disc Jockey as an upset win contender, but feel that Candy Tycoon is more likely to grab a minor award.

Mike Conti

No. 5 Gouverneur Morris (8-1) was sired by Constitution, who also sired Tiz the Law, and purchased for $600K in the Fasig Tipton March 2019 sale. Owned by Team Valor and Winstar Farms, he is trained by Todd Pletcher and will have hall of famer John Velazquez in the irons.

Gouverneur Morris was the favorite in all three starts of his career and has two wins and one second-place finish. His second-place finish came at the Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland in October, losing to Maxfield by 5.5 lengths. Gouverneur Morris’ first start off the layoff was an OC75K non-winners of 1 at Tampa Bay Downs in mid-February. He was placed forwardly and had a steady bid throughout the stretch to win by a length and a quarter.

Gouverneur Morris’ speed figures have improved in each start and he will need to step them up again in this field. He’s had four workouts since his start in Tampa, with one of them (March 15th) being a bullet, finishing 5F in 1:00.67.

Gouverneur Morris’ improving speed figures and the combination of Pletcher and Johnny V make him a must-include for the Florida Derby.


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Undercard Longshot Picks

Sean Zerillo

Race 13, the Appleton Stakes (G-3), is my favorite for the day in terms of longshots, with my top three selections each listed at double-digit odds on the morning line. The No. 7 Social Paranoia (10-1) makes his four-year-old debut for Todd Pletcher, and despite this being his first start off of a layoff, his tactical speed makes him a significant player.

No. 3 March to the Arch (8-1) is a reliable runner – with Beyer speed figures of 97 or higher in seven of eight starts – which puts him right into contention.

But there won’t be much early speed for either of those horses to chase, potentially leaving the No. 8 Dr. Edgar (20-1) loose on the lead. Poor pace setups in recent starts have victimized the defending champion in this race, but he should get a clean trip here for new jockey Paco Lopez, and though I doubt you’ll get 20-1 by post time, Dr. Edgar is worth betting at any double-digit number.

Mike Conti

I agree with Sean. No. 8 Dr. Edgar (20-1) is my favorite play of the day. He’s only hit the board twice since his win in this exact race last year, but there’s a lot to like here.

The Barclay Tagg trainee gets Paco Lopez in the irons today. I think that’s a big plus for Dr. Edgar as Paco has a way of getting horses to relax and that’s exactly what Dr. Edgar needs to compete in this race as his fastest speed figure is more than enough to win this race.

His early speed gives him a real chance, the biggest question will be if Paco can get him to settle so that he has enough coming for home. If that happens, watch out as we could see a nice $40 winner.

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