Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. • Wednesday: post position draw • Saturday: 138th Run for the Roses (5:24 p.m., NBC)

The skinny

A full field of 20 horses is expected for the 1¼-mile race, and it will be deep and talented. Injuries that derailed favorites in 2009, 2010 and 2011 have not been a problem this time around.

Watch out for ...

Bodemeister, trained by Bob Baffert, is arguably the most talented 3-year-old this year, although he lacks seasoning, never having raced as a 2-year-old. Baffert had him playing catch-up, with the colt making four starts in the run-up to the Derby. He stamped himself as a standout with his 9 1/2-length victory in the Arkansas Derby,

Did you know?

The past four Derby winners had just two prep races as 3-year-olds, including Super Saver in 2010. Among this year's top contenders, Union Rags was 3-1 as a 2-year-old; Creative Cause was 3-2; and Gemologist was 3-0 and has won both of his starts this year.

The Breeders' gang

Eight Breeders' Cup Juvenile starters are likely to run. Five of those eight were the top five finishers -- Hansen, Union Rags, Creative Cause, Dullahan and Take Charge Indy -- and all of them have run impressively this year.