Will History Be Made In This Season’s Epsom Derby?
The highlight of the flat racing calendar, the Epsom Derby sees the very best middle-distance three-year-old colts – and fillies if they choose – come together to contest a hard-fought Classic race that bears a rich and esteemed history since it was first run back in 1780.
It is a race where legends are made and an Epsom Derby winner can see a couple of zeroes added to their future stud value; only entire colts and fillies are allowed to contest the season’s biggest race. Lester Piggott rode nine Epsom Derby winners, while Frankie Dettori took 15 attempts to make it into the winners’ enclosure on a Derby winner.
Aidan O’Brien Bidding to Break Records
Aidan O’Brien meanwhile is one of only four trainers to have racked up seven wins in the race, most recently with his Anthony Van Dyck and the Ballydoyle maestro will again boast a strong hand at Epsom as he bids for a record-breaking eighth Epsom Derby success.
Russian Emperor could prove to be the pick of the O’Brien contingent and the Royal Ascot winner is available to bet at around 8/1 at the time of writing. The Galileo colt is a two-time winner from four starts and will head to Epsom fresh off the back of a win over First Receiver to take the spoils in the Hampton Court Stakes.
He could be joined in the Epsom Derby line-up by stablemates Vatican City and Mogul, with the pair closely matched in the ante-post betting for the colts’ Classic at around the 10/1 and 12/1 marks respectively. Both horses met with defeat on their latest starts, the former finding only the impressive Siskin too good in the Irish 2000 Guineas; while the latter was a shade disappointing when only finishing fourth at Royal Ascot.
Both shouldn’t be written off however as those runs were their first of the season and many of Aidan O’Brien’s horses improve for a run. They could prove decent each-way Derby bets if taking their chances.
O’Brien also has bigger priced entries in the Epsom Derby ante-post betting and he’s won the Classic in the past with some of his considered outsiders including 2017 winner Wings Of Eagles who landed odds of 50/1.
Dettori Teams up with Derby Favourite
Recent media reports have been focusing on Frankie Dettori taking over the ride on ante-post favourite English King who bolted up impressively in the Lingfield Derby Trial – a route taken by Anthony Van Dyck twelve months ago – where he was ridden by up-and-coming Tom Marquand on that occasion.
Owner Bjorn Nielson also owns champion stayer Stradivarius who recently won a third Ascot Gold Cup for trainer John Gosden with Dettori in the saddle. With Gosden unlikely to have a runner in the Derby it cleared the way for the Italian jockey to take over on the Epsom favourite although it is perhaps a shade unfair on Tom Marquand to lose the ride on the favourite having done nothing wrong.
English King leapt to the head of the Epsom Derby 2020 betting market following that easy Lingfield success and supporters of Ed Walker’s runner will be rewarded with a best-priced 7/2 at the time of writing. He’ll be sure to be well-fancied and with the Frankie factor will surely attract support and feature in many peoples’ Lucky 15 bets.
Godolphin Seeking More Classic Success
The hopes of the famous blue Godolphin silks will likely be carried by Military March who looked as if a stiffer test might suit when finishing fourth to Kameko in the 2000 Guineas. Trained by Saeed bin Suroor who also trained 1995 Epsom Derby winner Lammtarra, the New Approach colt could improve for the longer trip and his current betting odds of 7/1 makes him of interest as a potential each-way bet.
Pinatubo meanwhile also features in the Derby betting at 33/1 but having already been beaten twice this season over one mile and looking a doubtful stayer each time it is hard to envisage last season’s champion juvenile will line up at Epsom.
There’s sure to be a lot of interest in the Epsom Derby when it rolls around next month and the Classic will make appeal to experienced and novice bettors alike. For those not well-versed in betting terminology it might be worth consulting an A to Z Horse racing glossary for definitions of popular horse racing bets and hints to read the form and racecard for the Epsom Derby, and hopefully find the winner of the big race.
Guineas Winner Bids to Capture Derby Crown
Meanwhile the 2000 Guineas winner Kameko trained by Andrew Balding is another fancied runner having scored an impressive win in the season’s first Classic at Newmarket.
The Vertem Futurity Trophy winner – formerly the Racing Post Trophy – beat Wichita and Pinatubo to take the season’s first Classic and both those races he’s won are decent pointers to future Epsom Derby success.
Camelot won both races prior to taking centre stage in the 2012 Derby and Andrew Balding’s charge has solid claims of repeating that feat at around the 5/1 mark for supporters. The big question is will he stay the longer trip?
Tune in on July 4th to find out who wins the latest Epsom Derby and chalks up another slice of Classic history!