The Derby is the richest race in Britain and the most prestigious of the five Classics. It is staged on the first Saturday in June at Epsom Downs racecourse and is run over a mile and a half. It is a unique test of the thoroughbred, requiring a rare blend of speed, stamina and good balance to negotiate the undulating terrain and left-hand camber. While it is often regarded as a Classic for colts, the Derby is open to both sexes and is occasionally contested by a filly. Cape Verdi is the last to have tried when sent off favourite for the Derby in 1998, only to finish ninth of the 15 runners. The Derby is part of the British Champions Series and is sponsored by Investec.
Length of the race – A mile and a half.
Where to watch – RTV and ITV.
When to watch – Saturday, June 1, at 4.30pm.
Prize-money – The race is worth £1.5 million, with £850,650 going to the winner.
Course – The race is run at Epsom Downs racecourse.
Race type – The Derby is a Group 1 contest open to three-year-old colts and fillies.
Weights – Colts carry 9st while fillies carry 8st 11lb.
Ages – The Derby is open to three-year-olds only.
Sponsor – The race has been sponsored by Investec since 2009.
|1||2018||Masar||13136-013||3||16-1||Charlie Appleby||William Buick|
|2||2017||Wings Of Eagles||7149-2||3||40-1||Aidan O'Brien||Padraig Beggy|
|3||2016||Harzand||5-11||3||13-2||Dermot Weld||Pat Smullen|
|4||2015||Golden Horn||1-11||3||13-8f||John Gosden||Frankie Dettori|
|5||2014||Australia||211-3||3||11-8f||Aidan O’Brien||Joseph O’Brien|
|6||2013||Ruler Of The World||11||3||7-1||Aidan O’Brien||Ryan Moore|
|7||2012||Camelot||11-1||3||8-13f||Aidan O'Brien||Joseph O'Brien|
|8||2011||Pour Moi||81-311||3||4-1||Andre Fabre||Mickael Barzalona|
|9||2010||Workforce||1-2||3||6-1||Sir Michael Stoute||Ryan Moore|
|10||2009||Sea The Stars||4111-||3||11-4||John Oxx||Mick Kinane|
- Adjusted RPR of at least 128, 9/10
- Rated within 8lb of RPR top-rated, 9/10
- Achieved best RPR last time, 9/10
- By a sire with a stamina index of 1m1f+, 9/10
- Not out of first three on all starts after debut, 8/10
- From the top three in the market, 8/10
- Won over at least 7f as a juvenile, 8/10
- Drawn between stall four and ten, 8/10
- Made debut at a Group 1 track, 6/10
- Won last time out, 6/10
Four of the five winners who contested a Group race as juveniles were successful over 7f or a mile.
Trial winners have the following record: Dante 0321403, Lingfield 7026580, Chester Vase 502107207, Dee 002, Derrinstown 256480075.
Workforce is the only horse beaten in the Dante to win the Derby. However, he didn’t have to reverse form with the winner.
The 2,000 Guineas has become a key trial again with four of the last ten winners having won or been placed at Newmarket.
No winner in the past 33 years contested a handicap.
In 2013 Ruler Of The World became the first Derby winner not to have run at two since Commander In Chief in 1993
In Britain, the Feilden and Craven Stakes at Newmarket in April have provided recent clues to the Epsom Classic with Golden Horn and Masar obliging in 2015 and 2018. The Listed Derby Trial at Epsom was won by Cracksman in 2017, who went on to finish third in the Derby itself, while the Chester Vase and the Classic Trial at Sandown are other notable prep races for Epsom.
The Dante, held at York, is arguably the last chance for Derby contenders to showcase their talents with Golden Horn obliging before going on to win at Epsom in 2015.
In Ireland, the Ballysax and Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial are the two key trials and have been dominated by the all-conquering Ballydoyle team in recent years.
What happened last year?
The Charlie Appleby-trained Masar provided Sheikh Mohammed with a first Derby winner in the famous blue silks of Godolphin. The son of New Approach travelled powerfully to the front to deny Dee Ex Bee by a length and a half. Saxon Warrior, the 2,000 Guineas hero and a warm favourite to give Ballydoyle another Derby victory, could finish only fourth.
Where can I get Derby tickets?
Derby tickets can be purchased from The Jockey Club website here.
The ante-post market has been dominated by Aidan O’Brien-trained runners, including exciting Chester Vase scorer Sir Dragonet, but preference is for Broome. The son of Australia has won his two trials in eye-catching fashion this term and can only improve for a step up to a mile and a half. Surfman caught the eye with a good third in the Dante and, alongside Telecaster, look best of the British contenders. (Kitty Trice)
View the racecard and place your bets here.