- Epsom: It’s Derby Day On The Downs……..
- Epsom: Best Of The Rest Covered Too……
- TQ: ‘Moore’ Delight For Members…….
Hi, it’s ‘Derby Day’ folks!
But before all that, a bit of ‘trumpet blowing’ from last week with some nice winners that included Crownthorpe (3rd 14/1), Battaash (1st 10/11), First Sitting (1st 6/1) and Society Power (1st 5/2). We hope you were on and more of the same expected this weekend!
Back to this week – Yes, one of the calendar highlights this Saturday as we look forward to another Epsom Derby and with a cool £850k going to the winner then it’s going to be a monster payout for one luck owner.
Dating back to 1780, it’s ones of the oldest races too, while in recent years it’s been one that trainer Aidan O’Brien has made his own – winning it six times in total with Galileo his first in 2001. He’s actually won 4 of the last 6 renewals too and with a big hand again this year then O’Brien will be hoping to be in ‘Seventh Heaven’ come Saturday night.
His recent 2,000 Guineas winner, Saxon Warrior, is their main hope this year but after landing the prize with one of his lesser strings last year (Wings Of Eagles, 40/1) then you can’t really rule any of his five runners out!
Saxon Warrior has been handed stall 1 though and did you know we’ve not seen a Derby winner from that starting berth in the last 16 years?!
Triple Crown Still On Though – O’Brien’s Camelot came close to winning the Triple Crown back in 2012 after winning the Guineas and Derby but could only manage a ½ length second in the Leger. Saxon Warrior is, of course, is still on for TC glory – but he’ll need to land this race and then take the St Leger in September if he’s to become the first horse since Nijinsky (1970) to land all three races. Can he do it?
Those against Saxon Warrior will look to the likes of Roaring Lion, who was fifth behind him in the 2,000 Guineas, but has since bolted up in the Dante Stakes when upped in trip.
Hazapour has also been well-supported with Frankie Dettori booked to ride this Dermot Weld 3 year-old, who looks to have a similar profile to the yard’s 2016 winner – Harzand. While trainer William Haggas, who won the race for the only time back in 1996 (Shaamit), also has a leading chance away from the favourite with his recent Chester Vase winner – Young Rascal. Last year’s winner – Wings Of Eagles – was runner-up in that Chester race before going onto Derby glory!
Plus – here at TQ we’ve also got a Derby runner with a LIVE chance. Yes, Harry Dunlop’s Knight To Behold was an easy winner of the Lingfield Derby Trial last month so we know the trip is fine for this 3 year-old. He’ll be looking to become the first horse since High Rise to land both races since 1998 so good luck to the Dunlop yard from all of us here at TQ! He’s certainly got a live outsiders chance.
So, a bumper day to look forward to with FIVE LIVE races to take in at Epsom – as always, we’ll be hoping to find plenty more winners for you and as always, we’ve got it all covered with free tips and all key trends for the LIVE races. Enjoy!
Have a Great Weekend – enjoy the SUN!!
This Week At Trainers-Quote:
‘Moore’ Delight For TQ Members………………….
It’s been another top week here at Trainers-Quotes with more returns to shout about!!
The good form of the Mick Appleby camp continued this week with many winners and placed returns, that included Big Country landing the valuable Zetland Cup at Redcar, plus their Zapper Class bolted-up at Nottingham on Wednesday and looks a horse to follow based on that.
Plenty of other successes too but it was nice to see the Gary Moore yard fire in a top treble last Sunday at one of their local tracks – Fontwell – plus they also rewarded members with a nice TQ View winner on Thursday after Hint Of Grey bolted-up at Lingfield.
Here’s just a snippet of what members were told this week…………………………
“Billy Booth – Won here last time out over 5f but the way he ran on that day suggests this step up to 6f is a good move. Only raised 2lbs for that and sticking with the visor here that seemed to do the trick last time. Draw 9 not 100% ideal as might need a bit of luck in-running from there but is very well and hopeful of another good showing. Decent each-way.” 1ST 8/1 GAY KELLEWAY
“Hint Of Grey – Disappointing last run at Brighton on debut for the yard. But that was her first run for 4 months. Upped in trip today and hopefully the ground should suit. Has also run well at this track before and hoping for a better run today.” 1ST 3/1 GARY MOORE (TQ View)
“Waikiki Waves – Likely to be the longer priced of my three in the race but not without a chance. Seems better for last run here and we are 5lbs lower here. Blinkers are on for the first time too to keep his mind on the job and would not be surprised if he snuck into a place.” 1ST 5/1 GARY MOORE
“Royal Hall – Unlucky not to win last time at Plumpton when a close second. Up 6lbs looks a bit harsh but after a 75 day break has come on for that run. Another that James rides for us and he was on last time too so knows the horse. Needs to improve again but capable on that last run of doing so. Each-way.” 1ST 9/2 GARY MOORE
“Roll The Dice – The Nicholls and Tizzard horses are the obvious dangers and looks a tricky little race that could turn into a tactical affair between us and those two. We’ve a bit to find on the ratings with that pair too so might need them to run a bit below-par off level weights but the horse is well and James Bowen’s 3lb is a big help. Should be thereabouts.” 1ST 9/4 GARY MOORE
“Zapper Class – Another fairly new horse to the yard – this is only his third career run. Fair efforts over 5f but we feel this step up to 6f will help him a lot as not been able to get a blow in over 5f. 2lbs lower this time and also the jockey claims 5lbs so we get in here on a much better mark. Only a hands and heels apprentice race so goes without saying not one to go mad in but the drop in grade and the longer trip here should see us be much more competitive here. Looks another one of our better chances on the day.” 1st 3/1 MICK APPLEBY
“Repercussion – Has run three big races in very competitive handicaps so far this season. Looked like the drop back to 7f last time out was slightly against him and hopefully this mile – around a bend – will be better. Should be competitive in what is a weaker race than he has been competing in recently.” 1ST 7/4 CHARLIE FELLOWES
“Socialites Red – Tough little race but we head here with a fair chance. The unexposed Haggas runner – Island Of Life – is respected but we are the only proven course and distance winner in the field so that must count for something. Last four runs here read well – 1-2-3-7, while this mark of 67 is only a pound higher than her last winning rating. Luke a plus in the saddle so all-in-all think we’ve got a nice chance here and expecting a solid e/w run. “ 1ST 7/1 SCOTT DIXON
“Pearl Noir – We were hoping for much better last time but faded in the closing stages at Ripon. Won well the time before though – no real excuses, probably just had an off day as nothing came to light. CD winner here and off the same mark, plus Theo claims 7lbs again. Likes to get on with things and that will be the plan again here but draw 11 is not ideal so likely to end up using too much energy in the early part of the race – therefore, a place might be the best we can hope for. “ 3RD 28/1 SCOTT DIXON
“Ramblow – Course winner and the return to the AW is a plus here after finding the ground a bit too soft at Yarmouth last time, plus the trip in the sharp side. Back up in distance here and seems to run well at the track – we were a close second over this course and distance two starts ago. The 2lb rise is offset by the 3lb jockey claim so based on that no reason why we can’t go close again here. Only 7 runners now helps but not great for the e/w betting. The Beckett horse to beat but hopeful of not being far away. “ 3RD 14/1 MICK APPLEBY
“Sellingallthetime: Is much better for a recent run at York – first time back for around 7 months. Down 3lbs for that and back in the AW here. Record in the sand surfaces is good – 6 runs and 4 top three finishes (1 win). Bit to prove over this longer trip but has only tried it once so worth another crack. Has raced as if it will suit and now 7 year-olds old so 1m4f and beyond looks his sort of trip these days. Theo takes off another 7lbs too so that helps – few questions to answer but off this mark could easily sneak into a place.” 2ND MICK APPLEBY
“Big Country – Last seen running down the field in the Lincoln Handicap but that might have come a bit too soon after a win at Wolves just 2 weeks earlier. Up to 1m2f here is fine as stays this trip well. Been freshened up with 2 months off and ready to rumble again – has run well off a break in the past. Small bit to prove off this 103 mark and we are the highest-rated in the field but a very nice pot to aim at and with SDS riding we come here with a leading each-way chance.” 1st 9/2 MICK APPLEBY
“Ageurooo: Has been very frustrating – drops in class here though and we’ve got the blinkers back on today. He worked well in them recently and is a past course winner. If he puts his best foot forward then I think he can win this. George Wood rides and claims a handy 3lbs.” 1ST 10/3 DAVE GRIFFITHS
Don’t forget the TQ VIEW daily selection is what the team feel is the ‘best quote’ of the day. With over 5 years’ experience speaking to all the trainers they are in no better place to sort the wheat from the chaff!
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Epsom Derby: Will O’Brien Be In ‘Seventh’ Heaven?
4.30 – Investec Derby (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies) Cl1 1m4f10y ITV
Past Epsom Derby Winners
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 and Stats
16/16 – Raced no more than 5 times before
15/16 – Returned 7/1 or shorter in the betting
15/16 – Ran within the last 5 weeks
15/16 – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
14/16 – Had won a Group race before
12/16 – Favourites that were placed
11/16 – Won from a single-figure stall
11/16 – Won last time out
11/16 – Had run over at least 1m2f before
10/16 – Had raced no more than 3 times before
8/16 – Had won a Group One before
8/16 – Irish-trained winners
6/16 – Won by the favourite
5/16 – Trained by Aidan O’Brien (won 6 in all)
4/16 – Won the Dante Stakes (York) last time out
4/16 – Ran in the 2,000 Guineas that season (2 winners)
3/16 – Trained by Sir Michael Stoute (won 5 in all)
3/16 – Winners from stall 12 or higher
1/16 – Won over 1m4f before
0/16 – Run at the course before
The average winning SP in the last 16 runnings is 6/1
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
TQ VERDICT: This season’s 2,000 Guineas winner – Saxon Warrior – has been all the rage for the Derby for much of the winter and that support continued after his easy 2,000 Guineas win at Newmarket last month. He will be the main player from Aidan O’Brien’s five runners in the race as the Ballydoyle maestro goes in search of his seventh Derby success. This well-bred 3 year-old is yet taste defeat from four starts and there could be even more to come now stepped up in trip. Let’s make no mistake – he’s a big player, but his price also reflects that! Those against him might look to the potential soft ground as a negative as despite winning on it in the past, connections have said it’s not totally ideal. He’s also been handed stall 1 and we’ve not seen a single Derby winner in the last 16 years to come from that starting berth – it might be something of nothing, but still a trend to take note of. For me, Saxon Warrior is a serious player here and even his short price might look value after the race. However, we won’t get rich backing him so I’d prefer to play one or two in the field against him. Dee Ex Bee will be looking to follow in the hoofprints of last year’s winner – Wings Of Eagles – after also running second in the Chester Vase last time out. This Mark Johnston-trained 3 year-old is also a course winner so we know the track suits and has only finished out of the first three once from seven starts – of those at a bigger prices, he’s not the worst shout in the world. Knight To Behold fits in that category too. He was an easy winner of the Lingfield Derby Trial – beating another O’Brien runner, Kew Gardens, by just over 3 lengths last time and should have more to come. Of course, this would require a step up but at least we know the horse stays this trip, which can’t be said for a lot of these. He’ll be looking to become the first horse since High Rise (1998) to land both races. John Gosden’s Sevenna Star won the Bet365 Classic at Sandown last time and has form with cut but this is another leap up in class and he might just fall short. Of the other O’Brien runners – Delano Roosevelt – might handle the softer ground the best and has form that links him not too far behind Saxon Warrior and Hazapour so with O’Brien no stranger to landing this race with one of his bigger-priced runners then he can’t be discounted either. Another that will be popular is Roaring Lion. Okay, he’s got a bit of ground to make-up with Saxon Warrior based on his fifth in the 2,000 Guineas, but he was very impressive when upped in trip when landing the Dante Stakes at York last time and that race has proved to be a top Derby Trial in recent years – 10 Dante winners have gone onto land the Derby. However, this US-bred 3 year-old would have a bit to prove on this ground. Yes, this John Gosden runner has won on good-to-soft and was only a neck behind Saxon Warrior on that ground in the Racing Post Trophy last season but that recent Dante win came on a much quicker surface (good-to-firm) so it’s a bit of an unknown if he can translate that form here in much more testing conditions. Yes, if conditions dried out considerably then he’d be a big player but time might be against him on that score. However, the two I’m going to play against the favourite are HAZAPOUR and YOUNG RASCAL. That first-named will be popular with a certain Mr Dettori riding for Dermot Weld and with just four career runs there could be more to come. The Weld yard won the Derby two years ago with a similar sort and he should be a lot fitter for that recent Leopardstown win in the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial. This one is expected to be well-supported against the favourite and hails from a very shrewd yard that certainly know the time of day in this race, while the softer ground and this step up in trip should eke out more improvement. The other main selection – Young Rascal was a good winner of the Chester Vase and despite only winning by ½ a length there looked to be more in the locker. He beat Dee Ex Bee that day but didn’t get the clearest of runs in the closing stages so did well to get the job done. The William Haggas yard are also in cracking form with their runners heading into this meeting and also have a bit of history in the race – winning it back in 1996 with Shaamit. He’s got form on good-to-soft and the way he travelled through the race last time at Chester certainly caught the eye. Okay, he looked a bit green in the closing stages last time but that also suggests there is more to come. Add in that he handled the tight turns of the Roodee last time so there is every chance he’ll be well-balanced enough to also cope with the undulations that Epsom throws at these young horses too. He’s a very exciting horse that looks to have a big season ahead. James Doyle rides.
Epsom: Four LIVE Races Before The Derby……….
Epsom Horse Racing Trends (ITV4/RUK)
2.00 – Investec Private Banking Handicap Stakes (Handicap) Cl2 1m2f18y ITV
15/15 – Ran within the last 6 weeks
13/15 – Never run at Epsom before
13/15 – Had won over 1m before (5 over 1m2f)
11/15 – Winners from stall 6 or higher
11/15 – Placed last time out
10/15 – Carried 8-10 or more
10/15 – Returned 11/2 or shorter in the betting
8/15 – Favourites that were placed
8/15 – Horses placed from stall 1
5/15 – Won their previous race
3/15 – Winners from stall 1
3/15 – Winning favourites (1 joint)
3/15 – Won by trainer Sir Michael Stoute
3/15 – Won by trainer Sylvester Kirk
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 11/1
Stall 2 has just one place to its name in the last 15 runnings
TQ VERDICT: Some interesting stats and trends to get the live action underway here. Firstly, trainer Andrew Balding took this prize 12 months ago and will be looking to follow that up – this time with Macaque. However, although the first-time hood and the return to the turf might bring out a bit of improvement this 3 year-old was 10 lengths behind another runner in the race – Poet’s Prince – last time out at Chelmsford and based on that effort it’s hard to see him reversing that form. That horse is trained by the in-form Mark Johnston camp, who also have Book Of Dreams in the race. Poet’s Prince is now 10lbs higher than that Chelmsford run and has since run a blinder to be a close second at Newbury last time. He’s yet to finish out of the first two from six starts this season and when punters see those form figures he’s sure to be popular. It is worth noting though that the Mark Johnston camp are just 3 from 55 (5%) with their 3 year-olds at the track so that would be a concern. Local trainer – Simon Dow – doesn’t have the best overall stats at the track either, but he does do better with just this age group (3 year-olds) so his Corazon Espinado, who is also the only prove course winner in the field, can go well despite running from 2lbs out of the handicap. Trainer Sylvester Kirk is another yard to mention. They’ve won this race three times since 2009 so based on that his runner GEORGE must be given a mention. This 83-rated 3 year-old is 4lbs out of the handicap though and is yet to win a race from 8 starts. He’s been down the field in his races twice this season so I get the feeling the yard might just be running something in the race because it’s been kind to them in the past. Having said that, if the prices allow then he might be worth a small each-way interest purely based on the stables good record in the race but he does need to improve on what we’ve seen so far. With a 30% strike-rate with this 3 year-olds at the course then the Mick Channon-trained WESTBROOK BERTIE can’t be ruled out either. The very quick ground last time probably went against him but won well on heavy ground the time before, so any rain would be a huge plus and with the ground already likely to be on the soft side then he’s certainly one for the shortlist. Recent winners Ship Of The Fen and Indomeneo are others to note but would need more in this better race so the other pick is the John Gosden runner – COURT HOUSE. This 3 year-old is the top-rated in the field on 104 so as a result also carries the most weight. He’s shown a good level of form though and ran well to be a close second in a Listed race last time so this drop back into a handicap will be easier. Yes, the softer ground is an unknown with all his racing on firmer, but connections must feel he’ll cope with it and his breeding backs that up. Robert Havlin has ridden this Dawn Approach colt in all his last five races so knows the horse well and, for me, looks set to run a big race.
2.35 – Princess Elizabeth Stakes (Sponsored By Investec) (Group 3) (Fillies & Mares) Cl1 1m114y ITV
15/15 – Returned 9/1 or shorter in the betting
15/15 – Had won at Listed or Group 3 class before
13/15 – Drawn in stall 4,5,6 or 7
13/15 – Favourites placed
12/15 – Had won between 4-6 times before
12/15 – Finished in the top three last time out
12/15 – Aged either 4 or 5 years-old
12/15 – Had won over at least a mile before
12/15 – Came from the top 3 in the betting
10/15 – Had raced within the last 4 weeks
9/15 – Winning distance – 1 length or less
9/15 – Aged 4 years-old
8/15 – Had raced at Epsom before
8/15 – Winning favourites
8/15 – Won last time out
8/15 – Drawn in either stall 5 or 6
5/15 – Raced at Goodwood last time out
4/15 – Trained by Saeed Bin Suroor
3/15 – Won by a Cheveley Park-owned horse
2/15 – Trained by Sir Michael Stoute
2/15 – Trained by Mick Channon
2/15 – Trained by Roger Charlton
Jockeys Silvester de Sousa (2), James Doyle (3) and Frankie Dettori (2) have won 7 of the last 8 runnings
Godolphin have won 3 of the last 8 runnings
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 9/2
TQ VERDICT: A tight Group Three next up with really only Soul Silver looking up against it from the 8 runners. With 8 of the last 15 winners coming from stalls 5 or 6 then this would, however, be a small plus for Soul Silver (5), with the German-trained Listed winner – Diaphora – coming out of stall 6. This 4 year-old will be ridden by William Buick but with a rating of 96 then would have a bit to find with several of the others. The Richard Hannon runner – Anna Nerium – is the highest-rated in the field and after a solid 7th – beaten just 6 lengths – in the 1,000 Guineas then she sets a fair standard. This drop back into a Group Three (from Group One) will make life easier and prior to that run was an easy Listed winner at HQ. She rates a filly with a leading chance here but the soft ground would be an unknown for her. Lincoln Rocks is a consistent sort that has decent placed form at this level so he can’t be ruled out, while the Richard Fahey-trained Dance Diva gets in with just 8-8 so receives a massive 12lbs off most of the others. That would make her a big player as she goes ok with cut too, but her best form to date has been over shorter so getting home over this 1m 1/2 f trip would be a worry. Frankie catches the eye riding for Martyn Meade – they team-up with WILAMINA here and after a decent second last time out in the Dahila Stakes at Newmarket then she heads here with a big chance. The yard are 1-from-2 at the track, plus she’s got decent form in soft conditions. Stage Name must be held in high regard as this Hugo Palmer runner leaps up from a Class 5 Wolverhampton win to this Group Three level and is also entered in the Duke Of Cambridge Stakes at Royal Ascot. She’s at least won over the trip before and can’t be discounted either. However, with a decent 29% strike-rate with their older horses at the track the Roger Varian runner – SHENANIGANS – is the other one that gets the nod. This 4 year-old has been second in two Listed races this season, but last time at Goodwood kept on well to only go down ¾ of a length after being hampered. That came with a bit of cut and she’s also yet to finish out of the first three from 6 starts on turf. With Ryan Moore booked to ride everything is in place for a good run.
3.10 – Investec Diomed Stakes (Group 3) (CLASS 1) (3yo+) 1m 114y ITV
15/15 – Had won over at least a mile before
13/15 – Had won a Listed or Group race before
13/15 – Had raced within the last 6 weeks
12/15 – Had won at least 4 times before
12/15 – Finished in the top 4 last time out
12/15 – Aged 5 or older
12/15 – Drawn in stall 6 or lower
11/15 – Had raced within the last 5 weeks
11/15 – Had raced at Epsom before
11/15 – Returned 8/1 or shorter in the betting
8/15 – Came from outside the top 3 in the betting
4/15 – Won last time out
3/15 – Trained by Andrew Balding
3/15 – Winning favourites
2/15 – Ridden by William Buick
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 7/1
Sovereign Debt (4/1) won the race 12 months ago
Arod (7/4 fav) won the race in 2015
TQ VERDICT: We get a chance to see two of the last three winners of this race in action here with last year’s victor – Sovereign Debt – and the 2015 hero Arod lining up again. These are the only two course and distance winners in the field and it’s hard to put you off either. Sovereign Debt is, however, not getting any younger at 9 years-old and was trounced just over 6 lengths by Arod last time so of the two the David Simcock runner is preferred. He likes to get on with things from the front so we can expect more of the same here. He’s got form with give but the main concern would be the form of the yard – at the time of writing they are just 1 from 26 with their recent runners, but that can quickly turnaround. In contrast, the Simon Crisford camp are going great guns at the moment so their recent Ascot scorer – CENTURY DREAM – gets a big mention. That win came on soft ground, while this 4 year-old has now won 50% of his 12 career starts. William Buick gets on well with the horse and he gives the impression there is more to come. Breton Rock returns from a 224 day break so might just need this but on a plus the drop back in grade is a plus after running in Group 1 and 2 races for much of last season, while Ryan Moore has been booked to ride. Irish raider – True Valour – is weighted to go close too and should be a lot fitter for a recent third at Leopardstown in a Group Three and it’s interesting the Murtagh camp make the trip over with him. Love Dreams won a handicap at Goodwood last time over 7f but might have a bit to prove over this longer trip and in this better race, while Frankie booked to ride the Richard Fahey-trained Gabrial catches the eye. This 9 year-old rarely runs a bad race and should not be far away but is now 28 races without a win. However, CRAZY HORSE looks decent value too and is another I’d like to have on side here. He was only a neck behind Century Dream last time out at Ascot but is over double the price. The George Baker yard boasts a decent 23% record with their runners at the track and this 5 year-old also goes well with cut underfoot. That was also only his second run for the yard, so we can expect the Baker stable to be learning more and more each time he runs. With 9 career starts, and 6 top two finishes, then he’s also a consistent sort that should have more to come and if all 8 run looks the value call in a very open-looking affair.
3.45 – Investec Corporate Banking “Dash” (Heritage Handicap) Cl2 5f ITV
Recent Epsom Dash Winners
2017 – CASPIAN PRINCE (25/1)
2016 – CASPIAN PRINCE (11/1)
2015 – DESERT LAW (16/1)
2014 – CASPIAN PRINCE (9/1)
2013 – DUKE OF FIRENZE (5/1 fav)
2012 – STONE OF FOLCA (50/1)
2011 – CAPTAIN DUNNE (13/2)
2010 – BERTOLIVER (33/1)
2009 – INDIAN TRAIL (11/1)
2008 – HOLBECK GHYLL (15/2)
2007 – HOGMANEIGH (7/1)
2006 – DESERT LORD (12/1)
2005 – FIRE UP THE BAND (14/1)
2004 – CARIBBEAN CORAL (20/1)
2003 – ATLANTIC VIKING (9/1)
Epsom Dash Betting Trends and Stats
16/16 – Didn’t win last time out
14/16 – Raced within the last 6 weeks (12 within the last 4 weeks)
12/16 – Came from stall 8 or higher
12/16 – Won by horses aged between 5 and 8 years-old (inc)
12/16– Unplaced favourites
11/16 – Carried 9-1 or less in weight
11/16 – Had raced at Epsom previously (4 had won)
10/16 – Returned a double-figure price in the betting
4/16 – Horses from stall 1 that hit the frame
1/16 – Winning favourites
The average winning SP in the last 15 renewals is 16/1
TQ VERDICT: Blink and you’ll miss this one! Billed as one of the fastest five furlong courses in the world, that is run downhill for all bar the final furlong or so, then it’s speed all the way here. ALL of the last 16 winners failed to win last time out so of the 20 runners this might be seen as a negative for Tanasoq, who heads here on a three-timer and is the only last time out winner in the field. 14 of the last 16 had raced in the last 6 weeks, while 12 of the last 16 came from stalls 8 or higher. It’s been a poor race for favourites, with just one of the last 16 market leaders going in, while 10 of the last 16 winners returned at double-figures. It’s also a race that a lot of horses run in year-after-year too and we’ve actually got the last five winners lining up again. Caspian Prince has won the race in 2014, 2016 and 2017, while Desert Law (2015) and Duke Of Firenze (2013) are other past winners of the race. All three are not getting any younger but still command a lot of respect and along with Bahamian Sunrise are the only proven course and distance winners in the field. Of those, it’s hard to get away from the three-time winner of the race – CASPIAN PRINCE – a horse that did us a favour at 25/1 in the race 12 months ago. Now with Mick Appleby, this 9 year-old seems to save his best for this venue and is actually a pound lower in the ratings this year. He won from stall 1 last year so draw 2 looks ok and with good form with cut then he’s taken to go well again. Duke Of Firenze, who was third in this 12 months ago, had a good time of it last season but hasn’t quite fired yet this term so at 9 years-old might just need to come down in the weights a bit – the same applies to Desert Law. The George Baker (23%), Eve Johnson Houghton (25%) and John Gallagher (25%) yards do well at the track so Harry Hurricane, Super Julius and Bahamian Sunrise must be given a chance too, especially the last-named, who sports the first-time visor and has won at the track before. DARK SHOT is another horse that’s gone well in this race before though and is the other one that’s going to get a strong mention. Now with Scott Dixon, this 5 year-old ran a blinder to be a close second at York last time out on his debut for the yard and was also a close second in this contest 12 months ago. He’s a pound higher than last year but with jockey Jamie Gormley claiming 5lbs is actually better off this time. Draw 19 looks ok and he’s a soft ground winner in the past. It looks a shrewd purchase by the Dixon camp and they can reap a lot of their costs back by going close in this.
THAT’S YOUR LOT!!!
Have a GREAT Weekend