Epsom Derby Day Betting Tips – Saturday 2nd June 2018

This coming Saturday sees what is for many Flat racing fans the biggest and best day of racing in the whole year. The main focus will of course be on the Derby itself. The ultimate test of speed, stamina and balance, it is no surprise that this is the single most influential Flat race in the world when it comes to future breeding value. In terms of prestige, nothing tops the Epsom Derby.

This is far from being a one race day however, with the supporting card offering something for just about everyone. From the peddle to the metal of the Epsom “Dash” to the fillies- and mares-only contest of the Princess Elizabeth Stakes, there’s plenty for punters to get their teeth into. Here’s where our cash is going. Do you agree with out tips?

2.00 – Investec Private Banking Handicap (Class 2), 1m2f

Indomeneo each way at 12/1 with Ladbrokes

The three year old handicappers kick off the action on Derby Day, with conditions likely to play a major role in the outcome. Poet’s Prince and Ship Of The Fen are two who arrive in form and should relish the underfoot conditions, but the duo haven’t been missed by the market. In what looks a competitive heat, we prefer an each way punt on one at longer odds.

Another who likes it soft and is available at a nice each way price here is the Richard Fahey runner, Indomeneo. A perfect three from three on soft ground in his career to date, he took a while to warm to the task this season but bounced back to form when winning over this trip last time out in North Yorkshire at Ripon. That came on good to firm and the Piccolo colt needed every yard to get on top. The softer ground here will serve to make this a thorough test and off just 3lbs higher this one is fancied to at least make the frame.

2.35 – Princess Elizabeth Stakes (Group 3), 1m½f

Soul Silver each way at 25/1 with Coral

The fillies and mares take to the track in race two for this Group class contest. The tough and tenacious frontrunner Lincoln Rock’s heads the betting for David O’Meara and will likely take some pegging back if being allowed to dominate. The O’Meara yard doesn’t seem to be quite firing on all cylinders at present though and as such we will look elsewhere at the prices.

One who may well have been overlooked in the market here is the David Simcock runner, Soul Silver. As the only filly in the field to have previously won on soft ground, she probably doesn’t deserve to be quite so big a price. She disappointed a little last time out at Goodwood, but had previously finished an excellent staying on third in a Listed contest at Kempton and may well be suited by the good test at the distance she gets here. She will need to improve but that’s by no means impossible and she looks worth chancing with conditions in her favour and at huge odds of 25/1.

3.10 – Investec Diomed Stakes (Group 3), 1m½f

True Valour to win at 11/2 with Ladbrokes

We have one of the most competitive contests of the day up next with very little to split the first five or six in the betting market. David Simcock’s Breton Rock would be the obvious one having scored three times in Group 2 company. That makes the eight year old initially look an appealing prospect in what is a Group 3 affair, but the fact that he is 0 from 9 at 1m+ does temper enthusiasm. A rejuvenated Arod is another likely to attract plenty of support but he ran abysmally on his only previous start on soft and so he’s best avoided in our eyes.

Going in the same Qatar racing colours as Arod, the one to be on is Johnny Murtagh’s, True Valour. The fourth best horse in the race on official ratings, he will likely need to improve to shake up the principles, but whereas the three ahead of him in the ratings are eight, seven and nine years old respectively, True Valour will be having just his second start as a four year old here and looks a horse still very much on the up. He handles soft, and a staying on third over this trip at Leopardstown last time should have him spot on for this.

3.45 – Investec Corporate “Dash” Handicap (Class 2), 5f

Tarboosh each way at 12/1 with Bet365

The sprinters are next to take to the track as the build up to the big one continues as the handicapping speedsters tackle what is just about the fastest five furlongs in all of racing. Already in the record books as the only horse to have won this race three times, Caspian Prince returns in an effort to record an unprecedented fourth success. He has a chance but isn’t getting any younger and may just be vulnerable here.

Again, we’re looking a little further down the market where we feel there is greater value. The one who catches our eye is the Paul Midgley runner, Tarboosh. This one has a solid enough strike rate of four wins from 13 starts at the minimum distance and has only once finished outside the first three in five starts on good to soft or softer. Only beaten 3½l over this course and distance last time, despite being the most unlucky in running runner in the field, it is hard to believe he wouldn’t have finished in the first three granted a clear passage. Kept back for this race since, he makes obvious each way appeal off an unchanged mark of 92.

4.30 – Investec Derby (Group 1), 1m4f

Roaring Lion each way at 8/1 with Ladbrokes

And so to the big one, and the question on everyone’s lips is can the latest Aidan O’Brien star, Saxon Warrior be beaten. Nothing has managed to lower his colours in four career starts to date, including when he came out on top in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket last time out. The step up to 1m4f is the obvious question mark, but the general consensus seems to be that he won despite the trip being on the short side for him in the Guineas and should be seen in an even better light here.

The fact he is already being talked of as a potential Triple Crown winner – the last leg of which is the 1m6f St. Leger – suggests that he is fully expected to stay. Sire Deep Impact was a dual Group 1 winner at the trip, whilst dam, Maybe, was third in the Oaks so there is certainly cause for optimism on the breeding front.

That step up in trip is nevertheless a slight question, and we don’t really want any question marks when considering taking such a short price (a widely available 8/11). Roaring Lion likewise will be tackling the distance for the first time, but unlike the favourite we only need him to be placed to secure a profit here.

The John Gosden colt certainly wasn’t showing any signs of stopping when bolting up in the Dante over 1m2½f last time out. The Dante has historically been just about the best trial for this and in any other year the son of Kitten’s Joy would likely be favourite. Odds of 8/1 look like cracking value as an each way bet and should Saxon Warrior falter they will look even better.

5.15 – Investec Out Of The Ordinary Handicap (Class 2), 1m4f

Golden Wolf each way

Mark Johnston’s Soldier In Action won this last year and is only 4lbs higher 12 months on. He makes the short list but has been on the go for a while already this season without showing all that much and is reluctantly passed over.

Side instead with the Richard Hughes runner Golden Wolf. The four year old will be having just his sixth turf start here and would therefore be more open to improvement than most. A good second over the course and distance last time out on good ground, he was keeping on really well at the line that day and the slower conditions will likely bring his stamina into play. Yet to finish outside the first three on turf, he can at least make the frame once again.

5.50 – Investec Asset Management Handicap (Class 2), 6f

Shanghai Glory to win

Charles Hills is one of the top trainers around when it comes to the sprint division, and whilst his Shanghai Glory isn’t quite in the same league as stablemates such as Baattash and Equilateral, he may well be up to taking the finale. A winner on his only previous visit to the track, he handles soft ground well and having won at Listed level in the past he looks handicapped to win off a mark of 97.