Minnesota-owned horse is odds-on favorite to win Kentucky Derby

Two Minnesota-owned horses will race in the Kentucky Derby this weekend, with one picked as the odds-on favorite.

Zandon, owned by St. Cloud businessman Jeff Drown, is picked as the 3-to-1 favorite for Saturday’s race. Drown says it’s exciting to put the racing spotlight on Minnesota.

"It's really fun to see racing getting this attention in Minnesota," said Drown. "We really have a lot of good owners in Minnesota investing in thoroughbreds and really hoping to make a splash."

Drown fell in love with racing at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, where he also met Canterbury Hall of Famers Barry and Joni Butzow. The Butzows' horse Zozos will also race in the Kentucky Derby Saturday. 

"I think the experience people have here has helped build their excitement in ownership," said Senior Vice President of Racing Operations for Canterbury Park Andrew Offerman. "Obviously to see that culminate with the Kentucky Derby is an exciting experience."

The last time a Minnesota-owned horse raced in the Derby was 20 years ago. And in 1990, Minnesota’s Frances Genter’s horse Unbridled won the 116th Kentucky Derby.

Offerman believes this could be the first time a Derby has two Minnesota owners in the race.

"Let’s have a Minnesota exacta," Drown said Wednesday.