Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another wasn’t a name thrown around often in the build up for the 138th Run for the Roses, but the folks behind the window at one race book had been talking about the colt the last three months.
In early February, Lucky’s Race and Sportsbook took multiple bets on I’ll Have Another to win the Kentucky Derby at 200/1. Days later three-year-old horse won its first race as a 43/1 long shot at Robert B. Lewis Stakes.
“We took several large bets on him to win the Derby before he won that race,” Dan Shapiro, marketing director for Lucky’s, told Covers.com.
Shapiro couldn’t disclose what the limits were at the time but he did say one bettor made five figures off one ticket with 200/1 odds.
The wagers were made at Buffalo Bill's casino, a Lucky's location in Primm, Nevada, which is also a popular stopping place for the nearby California residents and just 200 miles from Santa Anita where the horse is based from.
"I assume that the bets came from someone close to the barn," Shapiro said.
Lucky’s is one of the only betting shops in Nevada that has a Kentucky Derby futures book. It opens the betting on the big race in October and follows over 250 horses until that first weekend in May.
It’s a lot of work for the oddsmaking team but the Shapiro says this is the first time in the four years Lucky’s has taken a loss on its Derby futures.