LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A mandatory payout of a Single 6 carryover pool of $385,132 will be available to horseplayers Thursday when Churchill Downs begins the post-Kentucky Derby segment of its 38-day spring meet with an eight-race twilight card.
The “Unique Carryover,” as it is termed in a lengthy set of rules available on the Churchill website, is derived from the $770,264 carryover that resulted from the six-race sequence on the Derby Day card Saturday. There were no perfect tickets after a series of longshots, led by 39-1 winner Funny Duck in the Pat Day Mile, segued into the Derby, won by 5-2 favorite Justify.
New rules approved by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission in 2016 mandate the carryover from Derby week – when the Single 6 was a $2 minimum wager – be split into two equal halves, with the wagering minimum lowered to 20 cents for the balance of the meet. The first $385,132 is being “forced out” Thursday evening, and the second $385,132 is being used to “seed” the Single 6 jackpot starting with a nine-race Friday afternoon card. Starting Friday, a solo ticket with all six winners is required to sweep the jackpot; otherwise, after the 15-percent takeout, 90 percent of that day’s handle is paid out on winning tickets, and 10 percent is added to the jackpot.
If there happens to be just one perfect winner sold Thursday evening, the entire pool ($770,264, plus the net from the additional Thursday handle) will be paid to that winner. Under that unlikely scenario, there will be no remaining “seed” money for Friday.
Unless otherwise designated, the Single 6 will be held daily on the last six races. On Thursday, when first post is 5 p.m. Eastern, the Single 6 will be held on races 3-8.
The Churchill racing office on Tuesday was to hold a double-draw of entries for the Thursday and Friday cards. Because of print deadlines, past performances for Churchill will be unavailable in the regular Thursday editions of Daily Racing Form, although accommodations will be made through other means.
In 2016, a $686,309 carryover from Derby Day was subjected to the new rules for the first time. The next day of racing was May 12, 2016, when an additional $1,470,005 was bet when chasing the split mandatory-pay carryover of $343,155. Many winning 20-cent tickets were sold, with each returning $679.40. The second half of the Derby Day carryover ($343,155) was then used to seed the jackpot, starting with the card of May 13, 2016, when $153,290 was wagered.
In 2017, the new rules were moot, as there was no carryover from Derby Day.
On social media in recent days, some horseplayers once again objected to the new rules, saying that reducing the minimum from $2 to 20 cents is inherently unfair to bettors who lost their original investment. Ken Ramsey, a prominent horse owner and pick 6 enthusiast based in Kentucky, was among the most vocal opponents when the new rules were first revealed in 2016.
In 2015, when old rules still applied and the 20-cent minimum did not exist, there was no carryover from Derby Day.