Horse Racing News: 2024 Kentucky Derby Best Jockeys According to TwinSpires
February 21, 2022: John Velazquez, aboard Medina Spirit, wins the 2022 Kentucky Derby. Xxx Img Derbyclevenger02 1 1 Lbvk94ca Jpg

The wait for the opening Triple Crown race of the season is nearing closer, with the Kentucky Derby being staged on the first Saturday in May. This year’s race will hold more significance than most, as the famous event at Churchill Downs will mark its 150th anniversary.

There will be more pressure than ever on the leading jockeys in the race to get the best out of their mounts for the Triple Crown race. Connections will have huge ambitions of winning the Derby this year, and booking one of the top in-form jockeys could be a potential difference-maker when it comes to potentially landing victory in the iconic race.

Best Jockeys and Kentucky Derby Results by

Flavien Prat

It has been an excellent start to the season for Flavien Prat, which is marked by the fact that he has registered 36 wins from 128 starts already in 2024. Prat has already shown that he is the jockey for the big occasion in 2024 after landing the lucrative Pegasus World Cup with National Treasure.

However, his potential best ride in the Derby could be up for debate, given that Nysos is ineligible for the race due to Bob Baffert’s ban. But, the Frenchman could be a standout jockey to pick up a potential ride after landing two previous Triple Crown races in the United States. His most recent win in the Kentucky Derby was achieved aboard Country House in the dramatic 2019 edition of the race.

Irad Ortiz

There is little doubt that Irad Ortiz is one of the best jockeys in the United States, having won the Eclipse Award for Outstanding Jockey previously. The 31-year-old is enjoying another fine season to this point after winning 64 times from 304 starts in 2024, with his best run coming with Book’Em Danno in the Middle East.

He could have a number of leading contenders in the Derby in 2024 to pick from. Ortiz has already recorded over 3,000 victories in his career, but he is yet to land success in the Kentucky Derby. His only Classic wins have come in the Belmont Stakes, with his most recent success coming in 2022 with Mo Donegal.

Joel Rosario

It has been a quiet start to the 2024 season for Joel Rosario, as he has competed in just 99 races. However, victories have still been following the talented jockey so far this season, with 26 wins and 16 seconds having been recorded to this point.

Rosario has already been aboard some of the leading contenders in the Derby betting, landing the Gotham Stakes with Deterministic and the Lecomte Stakes with Track Phantom. The 39-year-old will be chasing his second victory in the Kentucky Derby this year after previously landing success back in 2013. Meanwhile, he has further Classic success on his CV after landing the Belmont Stakes on two occasions in 2014 and 2019.

Frankie Dettori

There was huge excitement ahead of the start of the new season in the United States after it was revealed that Frankie Dettori would be prolonging his career with a final season of action in the United States. The legendary jockey has enjoyed a fine season to this point, recording 23 wins from 119 rides, winning over $2 million in prize money to this point. However, Dettori is often a man to side with when it comes to the biggest races in the world, having previously landed the Epsom Derby, St Leger, and Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe during his time in Europe.

Dettori has already won some big pots with Newgate in the Santa Anita Handicap and Honey Pants in the Las Clenegas Stakes. However, the big reason behind his decision to move to the United States was the win one of the big international races that he hasn’t yet landed glory in- the Kentucky Derby.

John Velazquez

John Velazquez is typically a jockey that Derby bettors are keen to keep on side when it comes to finding the winner of the Triple Crown race. There have been few jockeys throughout history to have achieved as much big race success as Velazquez, highlighted by the fact that he has won over $470 million in prize money throughout his career. Johnny V has only rode 17 winners from 117 starts this season, and is still waiting for a big race win in stakes company.

However, the 52-year-old has a habit of picking the best possible ride when it comes to the Derby, having landed three previous victories in the race. His most recent success came aboard Authentic in the 2020 edition. Velazquez has also achieved further success in the Classic races, landing the Belmont Stakes on two occasions, and the Preakness Stakes in 2023 with National Treasure.