Trainer John Servis can earn a return trip to the Kentucky Derby when his three-year-old colt Mischevious Alex enters the starting gate on Saturday for the 2020 Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct Racetrack. Servis is best known for training Smarty Jones, the Pennsylvania-bred colt who won the 2004 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes before narrowly missing the Triple Crown with a second place in the Belmont.
Servis' Mischevious Alex is the 3-1 favorite in the current 2020 Gotham Stakes odds. The winner of the Gotham will receive 50 qualifying points for the 2020 Kentucky Derby, virtually assuring himself a spot in the starting gate on the first Saturday in May. Post time for the one-mile, one-turn race is 5:42 p.m. ET. With the race featuring a lukewarm favorite, I believe the Gotham Stakes 2020 offers plenty of betting value. I have some strong opinions on the race and have made my 2020 Gotham Stakes picks over at SportsLine.
I hope to continue the success I had last year in the Kentucky Derby prep races. In April, I scored the exacta and trifecta in the Santa Anita Derby, Blue Grass Stakes and Wood Memorial on the same day. One week later, I hit the same bets in the Arkansas Derby.
In addition, last month I had the exacta, trifecta and superfecta in the Robert B. Lewis Stakes. Four weeks ago, I gave out a $5 exacta in the Sam F. Davis Stakes that paid out $71. Plus, I've hit nine of the last 11 Oaks-Derby doubles at Churchill Downs. That means I've held a ticket with the winners of the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby all but two times in the last 11 years. Anyone who has followed me is way, way up.
Now, I have analyzed the 2020 Gotham Stakes field and revealed where every horse will finish. I'm sharing my picks here.
Top 2020 Gotham Stakes predictions
One surprise: I'm fading Untitled, even though he's the second favorite in the Gotham Stakes 2020 odds at 4-1. In fact, I think Untitled barely cracks the top 10 in an 11-horse 2020 Gotham Stakes lineup.
This talented Florida-bred colt was impressive right from the start, winning his debut with an excellent 98 Beyer Speed Figure. But since being bought by new owners and moved to Casse, Untitled has yet to match that debut performance. He's likely to break through at some point, but I'm not willing to bet that breakthrough comes on Saturday at his 4-1 odds.
Another shocker: I'm high on War Stopper, an under-the-radar horse getting 5-1. He's a target for anyone looking for a huge payday among the 2020 Gotham Stakes contenders.
After three losses in which he sat mid-pack and further back, this son of Declaration of War broke his maiden by winning on the front end and adding blinkers. He won by four lengths and earned a strong 93 Beyer Speed Figure in the process. He may be improving at just the right time.
How to make 2020 Gotham Stakes picks
Instead, I am high on a double-digit longshot who is trained by someone known for scoring big upsets in New York. I'm including this horse in all of my trifectas and superfectas, and so should you. I'm sharing which horse to back, and my entire projected 2020 Gotham Stakes leaderboard, only at SportsLine.
Which horse wins the Gotham Stakes 2020? Which longshot will hit the board? And where does every horse finish? Check out the latest Gotham Stakes odds below, then visit SportsLine to see my picks for the Gotham Stakes.
2020 Gotham Stakes odds
Mischevious Alex (3-1)
Attachment Rate (9-2)
War Stopper (5-1)
Montauk Traffic (6-1)
Necker Island (12-1)
Celtic Striker (30-1)
Flap Jack (30-1)
First Deputy (30-1)
Based in Louisville, Jody Demling has been a fixture in horse racing for years. He currently is the publisher of Cardinal Authority and WKU Insider, both sites on the 247Sports network.