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You Can Still Sign Up To Bet on the Kentucky Derby Online in Illinois

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The 147th running of the Kentucky Derby will take place on Saturday evening, and Illinois sports bettors will be able to bet the event online.

Despite recent changes to Illinois’ sports betting registration rules, those located in the state can sign up to bet on the Kentucky Derby without having to complete an in-person registration process. In short, horse racing carries a different set of guidelines than do other sports.

Below, we will outline everything you need to know about betting on the 2021 Kentucky Derby in the state of Illinois, including a closer look at the current odds, betting markets, and best betting app for horse racing’s most prestigious event.

Click here to get a $300 risk-free first bet ahead of the Kentucky Derby with TVG. 

Betting on the Kentucky Derby is Legal in Illinois

Following the twists and turns of the regulations around Illinois online sports betting has been a roller coaster ride. Upon launch, Illinois required mobile sportsbook bettors to complete an in-person registration process at physical casino locations before placing online wagers. That requirement was soon lifted as part of a social distancing effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. However, the requirement temporarily went back into place last summer but was quickly lifted a second time until early April when it went back into place once again.

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Fortunately, the state’s ever-changing sports betting rules don’t impact the ability to bet on the Kentucky Derby in Illinois, which is legal and easy to do (more on this in a moment). To summarize, betting on horses falls under a different regulation, so many states which have yet to initiate legal sports betting platforms still permit online wagering for the Kentucky Derby and other horse racing events. In fact, bettors located in 31 different states will be able to bet on the Kentucky Derby.

How to Bet the Kentucky Derby in Illinois

Those looking for the best app to bet the Kentucky Derby should check out TVG, the sister-app of the popular FanDuel Sportsbook. Traditional online sportsbook apps don’t offer Kentucky Derby wagering, which is why odds won’t be found in apps such as DraftKings Sportsbook, William Hill, or FanDuel.

That’s where TVG comes into play. In our view, TVG is the best and most complete horse racing betting app. With extensive wagering types across a number of different horse racing events, TVG gives bettors plenty of ways to win and wager, doing so with a clean, easy-to-use app experience.

Best of all, new players who jump into the action with TVG ahead of Saturday’s race at Churchill Downs will be able to take advantage of a $300 risk-free bet, meaning those new to betting horses online can do so without any risk.

To bet on the Kentucky Derby in Illinois free of risk, simply complete the following steps:

  1. Click here to register and get the TVG app and use promo code RISKFREE300.
  2. Make a first deposit. There are several safe and secure options available.
  3. Place a risk-free bet of up to $300.

Simply choose a horse (or horses), confirm your wager type, and root ’em home.

How to Bet on Horse Racing

Whereas other sports offer betting markets such as moneyline, totals, and spreads, horse racing has its own unique set of wager types. Lets’ quickly run through some of the most popular options for betting the Kentucky Derby in Illinois (and elsewhere).

Win, Place, Show

Win, place, and show are known as straight bets, which simply target one horse’s specific results.

  • Win: It doesn’t get much more simple than a win bet. A bettor wins money if the horse picked finishes first.
  • Place: This bet will pay if the selected horse finishes in first or second place.
  • Show: This bet pays if the selected horse finishes in first, second, or third place.

Horizontal Exotic Bets

Horizontal exotic bets require a bettor to nail down the outcomes of multiple races (a multi-race parlay). In this case, hitting on a daily double (two races), pick three (three races), pick four (four races), pick five (five races) and pick six (six races) will drastically increase the overall payouts of winning bets. All wagers must be placed prior to the first race going off.

Given the Kentucky Derby is likely to draw many single-race bets, many new players won’t be placing horizontal exotic bets.

Vertical Exotic Bets

Those looking to win big on the Derby will take a closer look at vertical exotic bets, which are single-race parlay wagers. These bets require bettors to nail down the correct finish for multiple horses in a single race.

  • Exacta: A bettor wins by correctly picking the two horses that finish in first and second place.
  • Trifecta: This one requires bettors to correctly pick the first, second and third place finish in ordeer.
  • Superfecta: You guessed it, this one requires bettors to correctly select the first, second, third and fourth-place finishers.

2021 Kentucky Derby Odds

Here are the current odds for the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby.

Horse Odds
Known Agenda 6-1
Like the King 50-1
Brooklyn Strong 50-1
Keepmeinmind 50-1
Sainthood 50-1
O Besos 20-1
Mandaloun 15-1
Medina Spirit 15-1
Hot Rod Charlie 8-1
Midnight Bourbon 20-1
Dynamic One 20-1
Helium 50-1
Hidden Stash 50-1
Essential Quality 2-1
Rock Your World 5-1
King Fury 20-1
Highly Motivated 10-1
Super Stock 30-1
Soup and Sandwich 30-1
Bourbonic 30-1

Kentucky Derby Favorites

As the race draws closer, a handful of horses with the top odds stand out above the rest. Currently, Essential Quality (2-1), Rock Your World (5-1), Known Agenda (6-1), and Hot Rod Charlie (8-1) are the favorites.


Don’t count out a horse just because it enters with long odds. Back in 1913, Donerail won the 39th Kentucky Derby at 91-1 odds. Much more recently, Country House won the 2019 Kentucky Derby at 65-1 odds, surpassing Giacomo (2005) and Mine That Bird (2009), both of which won at 50-1 odds.

This year, some experts think longshots like Dynamic One (20-1) and O Besos (20-1) can make a run.

Click here to get a $300 risk-free first bet ahead of the Kentucky Derby with TVG. 


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