It’s the highlight race on the flat racing calendar as the best middle distance 3 year-olds of the season lock horns in the Epsom Derby. Steeped in history winners of the race will see their stud value rocket as soon as they cross the line.
Did you know that 15 of the last16 Derby winners had raced no more than 5 times before?
Here at JUICESTORM we take a look at recent winners and highlight the key trends ahead of the 2019 renewal – this year run on Saturday1st June 2019.
Past Epsom Derby Winners
2018 – Masar (16/1)
2017 – Wings of Eagles (40/1)
2016 – Harzand (13/2)
2015 – Golden Horn (13/8 fav)
2014 – Australia (11/8 fav)
2013 – Ruler Of The World (7/1)
2012 – Camelot (8/13 fav)
2011 – Pour Moi (4/1)
2010 – Workforce (6/1)
2009 – Sea The Stars (11/4)
2008 – New Approach (5/1)
2007 – Authorized (5/4 fav)
2006 – Sir Percy (6/1)
2005 – Motivator (3/1 fav)
2004 – North Light (7/2 j fav)
2003 – Kris Kin (6/1)
2002 – High Chaparral (7/2)
Epsom Derby Betting Trends
16/17 – Raced no more than 5 times before
16/17 – Ran within the last 5 weeks
15/17 – Returned 7/1 or shorter in the betting
15/17 – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
15/17 – Had won a Group race before
12/17 – Favourites that were placed
11/17 – Won from a single-figure stall
11/17 – Won last time out
11/17 – Had run over at least 1m2f before
10/17 – Had raced no more than 3 times before
8/17 – Had won a Group One before
8/17 – Irish-trained winners
6/17 – Won by the favourite
5/17 – Trained by Aidan O’Brien (won 6 in all)
5/17 – Ran in the 2,000 Guineas that season (2 winners)
4/17 – Won the Dante Stakes (York) last time out
3/17 – Trained by Sir Michael Stoute (won 5 in all)
3/17 – Winners from stall 12 or higher
1/17 – Won over 1m4f before
0/17 – Run at the course before
0/17 – Winners from stall 1
The average winning SP in the last 17 runnings is 13/2
10 Dante winners went onto win the Derby (Golden Horn, 2015 being the most-recent)
Only 1 horse that was beaten in the Dante (Workforce) went onto win the Derby
Epsom Derby Trainer Stats
Sir Michael Stoute won the race in 2010, 2004, 2003, 1986 & 1981
Aidan O’Brien won the race in 2002, 2001, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2017
As always, the 2019 Epsom Derby is run on the following day – this year on Saturday 1st June and just like the Oaks, the Derby is a contest the Guineas (2,000) always gets linked with. However, in recent years only Sea The Stars (2009) and Camelot (2012) have taken both races in the same season – with Nijinsky (1970) the only horse before them to win the two Classics. The O’Brien-trained Magna Grecia, who was the smooth winner of the 2,000 Guineas (4th May) this season will be looking to become the latest horse to try and join this particular hall of fame.
In recent times, five of the last 17 Derby winners contested the 2,000 Guineas the previous month, but, as we all know there is a step up in trip by half-a-mile from the Guineas to the Derby. Therefore, not only do horses need to proven then can stay the extra yardage, but there are also other key trial races developing.
In recent years, by far the best guide to the Epsom Derby has been the Dante Stakes – run at York last month (16th May). We’ve seen the likes of Motivator, North Light, Authorised and Golden Horn winning the Dante Stakes before going onto take the Derby – while in total we’ve seen 10 Dante winners go onto follow-up in the Derby.
As I’m writing this before the Dante has been staged then you’ll need to go back and check the result of that race, but as pointed out – it’s certainly worth it!
In terms of other trial races, the Chester May Meeting has done a good job of producing the Derby winner in recent times too. The 2017 Derby winner – Wings Of Eagles – was runner-up in the Chester Vase the following month, while Ruler Of The World – the 2013 Derby winner – won that same Chester race before glory on the Downs a month later.
So, what are the main trends?
Who’s Your Favourite – The Derby has not been a bad a race for the market leaders in recent times. Yes, last year’s jolly – Saxon Warrior – could only manage fourth and in the last two years we’ve seen 40/1 and 16/1 winners. Having said that, with 6 of the last 17 (35%) favourites winning, and an even better 12 of the last 17 (71%) placed, then that’s still not a bad return. It’s also worth pointing out that 15 of the last 17 winners returned 7/1 or shorter, with the average winning SP over that period just 13/2.
Fitness First – A massive 16 of the last 17 Derby winners had raced no more than 5 times before the big race – suggesting the Derby winners of late are still unexposed sorts that can improve rapidly between their early career runs. With a massive 16 of the last 17 (94%) winners also having raced in the last 5 weeks then having had a recent outing is a ‘must-have’ too. Also look for horses that were placed first or second in their most recent race – with 15 of the last 17 winners ticking this particular trend – while 15 of the last 17 (88%) were previous Group race winners.
Draw Advantage? Similar to the Oaks, the draw has played its part in the Epsom Derby too. Okay, last year’s winner – Masar – came from stall 10, but with 11 of the last 17 winners coming from a single-figure draw then this is still a trend to take into account with a 65% return.
Stable Diet – In terms of the main yards to look for then this is yet another of the big English Classics a certain Mr. Aidan O’Brien loves to win – his tally to-date stands at six! We’ve also seen 8 of the last 17 winners being Irish-trained. On the domestic front then Sir Michael Stoute is flying the flag with five wins, with the last of those coming in 2010 with Workforce, while the ‘boys in blue’ of Godolphin won the prize last year for the first time.
This year looks like being as open a race as we’ve had for a long time, but be sure to check back on key trial races at Chester and the Dante Stakes at York, while hopefully the key trends below will also help narrow down your search.
JUICESTORM VERDICT: Dante winner – Telecaster – was supplemented for the Derby at a cost of £85k so connections will be hoping to recoup that with at least a top four finish. He’s a fast-improving colt and Dante winners to have a good recent record of following up in the Derby – he’s one for the shortlist. However, it’s a race that is again dominated by the Aidan O’Brien yard, with seven of the 13 runners. They don’t always win it with their main one in the betting either so it’s hard to put you off any – two years ago they won it with a 40/1 shot! Broome, Japan, who was fourth in the Dante, and Anthony Van Dyck, who won the Lingfield Derby Trial easily, are all big players for the yard. Broome has won two Group Three’s in easy fashion and looks a very useful prospect. However, it’s still hard to get away from their SIR DRAGONET, who went into many a notebook when landing the Chester Vase – beating stablemate, Norway, by 8 lengths. That was only this Camelot colt’s second run and even though he still looked green – once the penny dropped he looked a class act. There should be a lot more to come. Yes, the quicker ground here and the track unknown is a small concern but he showed the ability to handle the tricky Chester course last time and that would have taught him a lot. Of the rest, Bangkok actually beat Telecaster at Doncaster earlier this season so has to have a big say too – he’s looked impressive since stepping up in trip to 1m2f and there could be more to come now upped to 1m4f. If you can forgive it’s poor last run then Godolphin’s Line Of Duty could bounce back – his form prior to that Dante flop was decent but he’ll need to prove he gets the trip. But the other one of interest is another O’Brien runner – CIRCUS MAXIMUS (e/w). This 3 year-old won the Dee Stakes at Chester last time in workmanlike fashion but the extra 2 furlongs here look a big plus. He looked better the further they went last time at Chester and it’s interesting the cheekpieces are on for the first time. Of the bigger-priced O’Brien runners, he looks the most interesting to me.
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