Kentucky Derby 2022 will ‘hopefully’ keep horse race betting alive, expert says

Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation’s Michael Bonakdar previews the 148 running of the Kentucky Derby.

As the 148th Kentucky Derby kicks off the first leg of horse racing's Triple Crown Saturday evening, one expert remains hopeful the "highly traditional sport" will keep the betting alive. 

"People love to bet on all kinds of stuff, I think sports betting is definitely one of their favorites," Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation’s Michael Bonakdar told "Varney & Co." Friday. 

"With the technology that's getting improved daily as we go into the future, I think horse racing will hopefully stay alive… especially [with] the Kentucky Derby coming up."

KENTUCKY DERBY 2022: WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT FIRST LEG OF HORSE RACING'S TRIPLE CROWN

Bonakdar went on to say that the Kentucky Derby is the "most exciting 2 minutes in history that happens every year."

Couture hats made for Kentucky Derby

Hand-made hats from scratch

Despite sports betting being more popular in the gambling industry, the expert said there are many hardworking people that will hopefully continue to keep horse race betting moving forward. 

He pointed out which horses to look out for during the Triple Crown event taking place at Churchill Downs in Louisville and what the odds are for the following Derby frontrunners – Mo Donegal (7-1), Happy Jack (24-1), Epicenter (9-2), Summer is Tomorrow (60-1) and Smile Happy (16-1). 

Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation’s Michael Bonakdar told FOX Business that Kentucky Derby 2022 will ‘hopefully’ keep horse race betting alive. (Photo by Erick W. Rasco/Sports Illustrated via Getty Images Set Number: X163598 TK1 / Getty Images)

This year is touted to be one of the more interesting races in recent history since legendary trainer Bob Baffert will not be allowed at the event due to a 90-day suspension. 

The ban was given to Baffert by Kentucky racing officials after last year’s winner Medina Spirit failed a post-race drug test. Baffert is scheduled to not participate during the entire Triple Crown series. 

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Bonakdar noted that although he will not be horse race betting this year, he will continue to look at the odds. 

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"I'm going to look at the condition of the track and the weather," he advised.

Fox News Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report. 

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