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The 2024 Kentucky Derby field has come into focus with just three weeks remaining before the first race of the Triple Crown series on May 4 at Churchill Downs. A trio of Kentucky Derby qualifying races took place at the beginning of April, with each of the winners taking home 100 qualifying points and securing their spot in the 20-horse 2024 Kentucky Derby field. The 2024 Kentucky Derby favorite was not among that group, as Fierceness clinched his spot when he won the Florida Derby at the end of March. He has three wins in five races, and he is the 3-1 favorite in the 2024 Kentucky Derby odds.

Sierra Leone, who won the Blue Grass Stakes earlier this month, is second in the Kentucky Derby odds 2024 at 7-2. Catching Freedom (8-1) and Forever Young (10-1) are among the other 2024 Kentucky Derby contenders who could be popular Kentucky Derby picks. Which 2024 Kentucky Derby horses should you back with your 2024 Kentucky Derby bets? Before making any 2024 Kentucky Derby picks, be sure to see the horse racing predictions and futures bets from SportsLine's elite horse racing expert Jody Demling

A fixture in the horse racing world who has been writing about, talking about and betting on races for years, Demling enters the 2024 Kentucky Derby having nailed the winner of the Belmont Stakes four of the last six years, including an exacta in 2022 with Mo Donegal and Nest. He also called Flightline's win at the Breeders' Cup Classic in November of that year. 

Demling is at his best in the biggest horse races in the world like the Kentucky Derby 2024. In fact, he has hit 10 of the last 15 Derby-Oaks doubles at Churchill Downs. That means he held a ticket with the winners of both races all but five times in the last 15 years. He's also called 10 of the last 19 Preakness winners, including nailing his Preakness winner, exacta and superfecta picks in 2023, keenly understanding when the Kentucky Derby winner was poised for victory or a massive upset. Anyone who has followed him is up huge.

Now, with the 2024 Kentucky Derby odds already on the board, Demling is sharing his picks and 2024 Kentucky Derby predictions over at SportsLine. Go here to see them.

Top 2024 Kentucky Derby predictions

One of Demling's surprising 2024 Kentucky Derby picks: He is fading Fierceness, even though he's the top favorite and just won the Florida Derby. Fierceness has alternated wins and losses over his five starts, highlighted by that Florida Derby win and taking the Breeders' Cup Juvenile in November. However, he had a seventh-place finish in his first Grade 1 start at the Champagne Stakes and could only muster a third place at Gulfstream Park in February. A lack of consistency is, perhaps, a factor you could overlook with a longshot, but shouldn't be ignored with the 3-1 favorite.

Fierceness is saddled by Todd Pletcher, the most experienced Kentucky Derby trainer of all-time. He's sent a record 64 horses to the Kentucky Derby, but that's resulted in just two victories, or 3.1%. Since his last victory in 2017, 15 of Pletcher's 16 Kentucky Derby starters have failed to hit the board, and his horses have an average finish of 12.4 over this stretch. Additionally, there are concerns about the stamina of Fierceness since his sire never won a race longer than 1 1/8 miles, while his dam was never victorious in a race of one mile in distance. See which other 2024 Kentucky Derby horses to avoid at SportsLine.

Another stunner: Demling is high on Resilience, even though he's a 35-1 longshot. He's a target for anyone looking for a huge payday. Resilience locked up his spot in the 2024 Kentucky Derby field when he won as the third betting choice in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct. Jockey John Velazquez said the horse lost focus in previous races, but the addition of blinkers made a major difference.

Resilience registered a Brisnet Speed figure of 104 in that race, a significant improvement from his previous two races. He is in good hands with trainer Bill Mott and is cut out for this distance. Demling says Resilience has a chance to make noise at the Kentucky Derby 2024, especially since he has been getting better with every start. See which other horses to back at SportsLine

How to make 2024 Kentucky Derby picks, bets

Demling is especially high on an epic double-digit longshot who "keeps getting better and better." Demling is sharing which horse it is, along with his entire projected 2024 Kentucky Derby leaderboard, over at SportsLine.

Which horse wins the Kentucky Derby 2024, and which double-digit longshot is a must-back? Check out the latest 2024 Kentucky Derby odds below, then visit SportsLine to see Demling's picks for the Kentucky Derby, all from the expert who nailed 10 Derby-Oaks doubles.

2024 Kentucky Derby odds, futures

HorseOddsProjection
Fierceness3-1SEE PICKS
Sierra Leone7-2SEE PICKS
Catching Freedom8-1SEE PICKS
Forever Young10-1SEE PICKS
Dornoch12-1SEE PICKS
Track Phantom15-1SEE PICKS
Honor Marie16-1SEE PICKS
Mystik Dan16-1SEE PICKS
Domestic Product18-1SEE PICKS
Endlessly20-1SEE PICKS
Just A Touch20-1SEE PICKS
Deterministic20-1SEE PICKS
Just Steel25-1SEE PICKS
Resilience 35-1SEE PICKS
Stronghold35-1SEE PICKS
West Saratoga80-1SEE PICKS
No More Time85-1SEE PICKS
Catalytic100-1SEE PICKS
Hades100-1SEE PICKS
T O Password100-1SEE PICKS
Society Man101-1SEE PICKS
Grand Mo the First125-1SEE PICKS
Encino350-1SEE PICKS
Liberal Arts350-1SEE PICKS
Common Defense500-1SEE PICKS
Epic Ride 500-1SEE PICKS
Lucky Jeremy 500-1SEE PICKS