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In an Irish-dominated renewal of Epsom's G1 Investec Derby, it was His Highness The Aga Khan's Harzand (Ire) (Sea the Stars) who led home his Ballydoyle compatriots US Army Ranger (Ire) (Galileo) and Idaho (Ire) (Galileo).
This time last year, Mick and Cheryl Goss were at Epsom as the guests of the stewards and Investec for both the Investec Oaks and Derby days. With a month to go, there was no obvious favourite for the Derby, yet they were privileged to witness one of the great performances in the historic race's more than three centuries' old existence, from Anthony Oppenheimer's eventual horse of the year, Golden Horn.
Stop for a moment, and ask yourself as we so often have, what Summerhill and South African breeding would have been without Northern Guest, the world's winning-most broodmare sire of all time?
The damage was not quite as bad as the bookmakers might have anticipated. But it was bad enough. More than 300,000 bets were taken on Frankie Dettori's mount, Golden Horn, on the day which cost William Hill alone £1million.
Perhaps the Coolmore empire will not win the Derby as they have for the last four years. Perhaps they will - their three candidates have stamina in their favour, a vital factor for any Derby winner whether present in large or small quantity.
Golden Horn produced a wondrous performance to win the most important race of them all and give trainer John Gosden and big-race partner Frankie Dettori each a second win in the Investec Derby.
The English invented horseracing, cricket and rugby, and while they still haven't quite perfected those sports after several centuries, the thrill of a day at Epsom, Lords or Twickenham is about as close to perfection as it gets. Lest you think this is a sporting commentary, the Investec Festival at Epsom, embracing both the Oaks and the Derby, is as much about horseracing as it is about branding.
Mike de Kock has a mountain to climb, but his record suggests he loves mountaineering. On the face of it, taking on one of the more legitimate prospects of the dozen or so American Triple Crown aspirants of the past 36 years with a horse whose best shot in the first leg was a lacklustre eighth, seems a daunting thought. But we know better than to count De Kock out before he's done. Tactically, foxes don't come much smarter, and you can spot de Kock's reasoning a mile off.
Australia (Galileo) lived up to his huge reputation when capturing the Gr.1 Investect Derby at Epsom yesterday. The hot favourite was always travelling sweetly under Joseph O’Brien and he showed an impressive turn of foot to collar the runner-up Kingston Hill (Mastercraftsman) a furlong and a half from home.
Watch Talent winning the Investec Oaks
(Image : The Telegraph - Footage : Racing UK)
“A svelte chestnut and a golden filly with the right names.”
As owners, breeders and trainers know all too well, there are a vast array of factors which can put an end to the most promising of careers. One simple, yet highly effective method, seems to be the choice of a name. Whatever aspirations of grandeur one proud colt by Tumblewind may have had, were summarily crushed as soon as he got the moniker, “Hellcatmudwrestler”. Over-expectancy meets the same fate. “The Fastest” failed to reach a place in six outings in Argentina, while “Pure Speed” was beaten by a total of 138 lengths in her three lifetime starts. Thus it was with some daring that two of the present crop of European three-year-olds were christened Talentand Ruler Of The World.
Given the eccentricities of Epsom’s camber, it’s not always the case that talent triumphs in the Oaks. This year however, the triumph was emphatic. Travelling supremely well under Richard Hughes, the golden daughter of New Approach quickened in the style of a top class filly, once a gap finally appeared, and claimed the crown of Classic heroine in a matter of strides.
With Talent safely ensconced on her throne, it was widely anticipated that New Approach would complete a swift Classic double in the following day’s Derby. After all, his son Dawn Approach was unbeaten and scarcely tested in seven outings, having pulverized his opposition in the Dewhurst Stakes (Gr.1) and the 2000 Guineas (Gr.1,) and in the preliminaries exemplified the laid back constitution of a Frank Bruno. But as Dawn Approach showed a fighting spirit not to his rivals but to his pilot, Ruler Of The World settled into a smooth rhythm for Ryan Moore, before quickening into immortality at the furlong pole. For once, we have a svelte chestnut and a golden filly with the right names.
Watch Intello winning the Prix du Jockey Club
(Image : RTE - Footage : Equidia)
“Whoever thought we’d see the likes of
the mighty stallion Sadler’s Wells again?”
His fourteen sires premierships made the previous standard-bearers, Hyperion (five) and St Simon look like the kindergarten. Yet the measure, it has so often been said, of a great progenitor, lies in his ability to get better than himself and that, it seems, is exactly what Sadler’s Wells has in his son, Galileo. In a matter of nine days, Galileo has put all the phenomenal things he’s achieved already in the shade, with three European Classic winners in less than ten days, two of them this past weekend. On Sunday, Intello added the French Derby (Prix du Jockey Club) to English repertoire.
Settled into a beautiful rhythm by the masterful Olivier Peslier, Intello tracked the leading pair until quickening to the fore entering the final 300 metres and was in command thereafter as Morandi and Sky Hunter gave vain pursuit. An unlucky third in the Gr.1 Poule d’Essai des Poulains, the bay thus gave Coolmore’s European Champion Three-Year-Old Galileo a third Classic winner in nine days following the victories of Magician and Ruler Of The World in the Irish 2,000 Guineas and the Derby.
Intello is the eighth Graded/Group winner by the outstanding son of Sadler’s Wells and the thirty-fourth to triumph at the highest level. Intello is the second foal of Impressionnante, who won the Gr.2 Prix de Sandringham on this day seven years ago and finished runner-up in both the Gr.1 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches and Gr.1 Prix d’Astarte. An elegant daughter of Danehill, Impressionnante is out of Kaldoun’s Gr.1 Prix de la Foret and Gr.1 Prix Maurice de Gheest heroine Occupandiste, who produced the Gr.3 Prix de Saint-Georges and Gr.3 Prix du Petit-Couvert victrix Only Answer to another son of Danzig, Green Desert. Successful in the Gr.2 (now Gr.1) Prix d’Astarte, Occupandiste’s grandam Elle Seule produced Derrinstown Stud’s Gr.1 July Cup winner Elnadim to Danzig, the Gr.1 Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Mehthaaf to Sadler’s Wells’ three-parts brother Nureyev and the Gr.3 Nell Gwyn Stakes victrix Khulood to Storm Cat. By Exclusive Native, Elle Seule is one of nine Stakes winners out of the Gr.1 Matron Stakes queen Fall Aspen, these including Danzig’s Gr.1 July Cup winner Hamas and Gr.2 Diadem Stakes scorer Bianconi and Sadler’s Wells’ Gr.1 Grand Prix de Paris hero and South African Champion Sire Fort Wood as well as the Gr.1 Preakness Stakes victor Timber Country (Woodman), the Gr.1 Gamely Stakes heroine Northern Aspen (Northern Dancer) and Dubai Millennium’s dam Colorado Dancer (Shareef Dancer).
Intello is one of eleven Group winners from the 81 foals aged three and over by Galileo out of daughters of Danehill. Indeed, seven of these have triumphed at the highest level, Intello joining the Classic winners Cima De Triomphe, Frankel, Golden Lilac and Roderic O’Connor and the European Champion Juveniles Maybe and Teofilo, whilst an eighth, Cuis Ghaire, finished second in the 1,000 Guineas. Interestingly, the tryst between Galileo and Danehill produces sex-balanced inbreeding to Northern Dancer’s dam, the disqualified Spinaway Stakes victrix Natalma, and to two dual US Horses Of The Year in Natalma’s sire Native Dancer and Buckpasser.
Editor’s Note: Earlier this week, Summerhill became home to its sixth daughter of Galileo, when Uthawini came “home” after her recent re-purchase at the Cape Broodmare sale. By Galileo out of a Danehill mare, she represents the same cross which produced Frankel and Sunday’s Derby hero.
Daily News 2000 - Vercingetorix, No Worries, Capetown Noir and Wylie Hall
(Image : Gold Circle)
“At this time of year, three-year-olds exhibit
differing rates of improvement.”
In our preview of the Daily News 2000 on Friday, we mentioned that at this time of year, three-year-olds exhibit differing rates of improvement. This couldn’t have been better illustrated than in Saturday’s South African-flavoured Group Ones, matched only by Claude Moshiywa’s stunning Comrades Marathon victory, the first “up-run” win by a local man in twenty-one years of the world’s most gruelling ultra-distance contest.
Let’s start with the oldest of the horse races. England’s Epsom Derby was being run for the 234th time, proudly carrying the label of South Africa’s Investec Bank. Rumoured unbeatable, the unbeaten Dawn Approach went out deep in the red, only to destroy his chances with a mulish display under Kevin Manning. Clearly accustomed to the speed of his earlier conquests at six to eight furlongs, he was unable to restrain himself without cover on the outside, and simply caved in as the field straightened from Tattenham Corner. The boys at Coolmore don’t need more than one invitation; within strides, a shoal of their five-horse entry swamped the lead. However, their back-marker in navy, Ruler Of The World, flashed up at the business end to run them all down from Libertarian, Galileo’s Rock and Battle Of Marengo, completing a whitewash of the world’s oldest classic by descendants of the remarkable Galileo, himself a Blue Riband hero of an earlier generation.
The unbeaten Ruler Of The World had given notice of his promise with a six length romp in Group company at Chester a month before, but needed Saturday’s victory to justify Susan Magnier’s choice of his extravagant appellation. As Coolmore boss, John Magnier quipped in the winner’s circle, “We allocate these lofty names on the basis of pedigree and what the youngsters are showing us at home; some we win and some we lose, and we’ve had a number of bad American presidents!” This one they got right. Those with an interest in breeding will be amused at the thin line between success and failure. Asked where the mare had gone in the past season, Magnier responded that she was on her way to Fastnet Rock, when he phoned trainer Aidan O’Brien to find out how the thre-year-old was doing. “He’s good”, was the response, and so his dam Love Me True, from the spectacular family of A.P. Indy, Duke Of Marmalade, Al Mufti and Lemon Drop Kid, is carrying a full sibling to the Derby winner. The rich just get richer!
Closer to home, the Woolavington Stakes (Gr.1) looked like a match in two between Bridget Oppenheimer’s Triple Tiara heroine, Cherry On The Top, and the Summerhill Sales graduate Blueridge Mountain. Recalling the vagaries of the game and the impossibility of knowing what’s going on inside a horse, the bridesmaid in all three legs of the Tiara, Michael De Broglio’sDo You Remember, trumped them all in the dying strides, just as Blueridge Mountain looked home-and-hosed halfway up the Greyville straight. To be fair, Cherry On The Top was over the top, while Blueridge Mountain’s 1200 metre prep was hardly the stuff of normality for a Group One at 2000m. But luck? Luck schmuck! “Breed the best to the best, and hope for the best”, they say. Do You Remember is a daughter of the white hot Silvano, from De Broglio’s Oaks-winning mare, Festive Occasion.
Vercingetorix’s unbeaten rally to the Vodacom Durban July remained on course when he scraped home by a nose in the Daily News 2000 (Gr.1), tossing the Breeder’s Championship up in the air, as the gap between ourselves and our nearest pursuers narrowed to nothing. The Klawervlei party however, was spoilt to a degree by No Worries’ killer burst in the closing moments of the race, where he raced from last at 75-1.
There was plenty of talk in the aftermath about Capetown Noir’s hard-knocking rattle for third, less than a head behind. If you were choosing between him and Vercingetorix on this evidence, with the extra furlong of the July, you’d have to be with Dean Kannemeyer’s horse, but all this ignores the fact that No Worries came from behind both of them, and another stride would’ve seen the wreath on his shoulders. If you subscribe to the notion that once they start to get good, there’s no knowing how good they’re going to get, “No Worries” could just live up to his name in the July.
Besides the fact that this result could be championship-threatening for Summerhill, our fellows were left lamenting our fourth bob-of-the-nose Group One second in recent times; Galant Gagnant went down by a head to Russian Sage in the same race; Smanjemanje failed by a nose to rein in Pomodoro in last year’s July, and Black Wing was “heads-up” on the Champions Cup (Gr.1) post when it should’ve been “heads-down”, in August.
As matters stand, No Worries holds no entry for the Vodacom Durban July, but “Buffalo Bill” Burnard tells us that’s what he’s in the game for. He may never get a chance like this again. If you fancy the chances of Vercingetorix and Capetown Noir, you’d have to fancy No Worries, as well. When the sticks came out, nobody dug deeper on Saturday. Every inch of the way. In the “big ones”, it’s those inches that make the difference. It’s what separates the living from the losers.
Editor’s Note: Together with the Guineas third, Corredor, No Worries is a graduate of the inaugural Emperors Palace Summer Ready To Run, staged in our School Of Excellence. His share of Saturday’s spoils puts “Buffalo” well ahead of the hefty R400,000 price tag.
Watch Ruler Of The World winning the Investec Derby (Group 1)
(Image - ODT - Footage : Racing UK)
INVESTEC DERBY (Grade 1)
Epsom Downs, Turf, 2423m
1 June 2013
Impressive when winning the May 9 Group 3 Chester Vase, Ruler of the World (Ire) (Galileo) entered the Group 1 Investec Derby as the 7-1 second-favored of the Ballydoyle quintet and emerged on top under jockey Ryan Moore for trainer Aidan O’Brien.
Settled towards the rear early, the bay who sported cheekpieces as he did at Chester, surged to the front passing the quarter pole and kept grinding to beat the strong-finishing Libertarian (GB) (New Approach) by 1 1/2 lengths, with Galileo Rock (Ire) (Galileo) a short head behind in third.
“We feel very lucky to be standing here,” John Magnier said. “This is what it’s all about. That’s why the Derby is such an interesting race, as its all unfolding and we didn’t know where they were this year because of the weather.”
Dawn Approach (Ire) (New Approach) was lit up from the outset and his refusal to settle meant that he was a spent force by the time the quarter mile pole was reached, ultimately finishing last.
Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News
Click above to watch post Investec Derby interview with Aidan O’Brien…
(Image and Footage : Racing UK)
INVESTEC DERBY (Group 1)
Epsom Downs, Turf, 2400m
2 June 2012
Derrick Smith’sCamelot (GB) (Montjeu), trainer Aidan O’Brien and jockey Joseph O’Brien had a weight of expectation on their shoulders entering Saturday’s G1 Investec Derby, but the 8-13 favorite and his 19-year-old rider proved impervious to the pressure when surging to an emphatic five-length victory. In doing so, the much-lauded bay completed the 2000 Guineas / Epsom Derby double and became the first horse to win this great race for a father-son trainer-jockey combination.
Settled with only one behind by his supremely confident rider early, Camelot had his positively ridden stable companion Astrology (Ire) (Galileo) to aim at in the straight and, after powering past with a furlong remaining, carried on into the clear, with Main Sequence (USA) (Aldebaran) denying a Ballydoyle one-two in the final stride. “He must be right up there with the best,” John Magnier commented. “It is there for everybody to see, and we are fortunate to have anything to do with him, particularly in the year that his father died, which makes it more important.” When asked whether he would like to attempt the Triple Crown, the Coolmore supremo answered, “Wouldn’t anybody? We are going to have to take it race-by-race and give it a lot of thought. These things get to mean more as you get older. If you had asked me the same question 20 years ago, I would have looked the other way, but we’ll have to see what Derrick Smith and Michael Tabor think about it. We are going through a good patch at the moment, so we just have to savor the moment.”
If there was any panic rising as he guided Camelot down the hill still several lengths adrift of Ryan Moore and Astrology, it was not apparent until he asked the crowd’s choice to chase hard from the three-furlong pole. Hanging down the camber as he closed down his barnmate, Camelot’s acceleration had carried him into a winning position by the furlong pole and his subsequent tour de force allowed connections and favorite-backers time to bask in the moment. “I was a bit worried, as he didn’t come down the hill at all and didn’t handle the track that well,” Joseph O’Brien explained. “He’s a very special horse and I’m just very fortunate to be on his back.” Derrick Smith, who was celebrating an apt 100th Group 1 winner, added, “It’s not a dream, because I could never have dreamt I would do it. This is the one everybody wants in racing and what a horse and what a ride. I suppose the Triple Crown must be on the agenda and we may get pressured into it, but we’ll sit down and talk about it and make the final decision.”
Aidan O’Brien paid his own tribute to the sport’s new talent. “He always looked special, but this is something you can’t really dream about,” he commented. “He’s one of those unusual horses who seems to be always finishing no matter what trip you run him over. He’s magical and that’s the only way I can describe him - he couldn’t be better named. He has a great constitution and the way he came back and stood relaxed in the winner’s enclosure afterwards, he’s very much in control. That he’s in such a place in his head with that ability, it is very unusual. We really fancied Ryan Moore’s horse, Astrology, and an awful lot of things could have happened, but Joseph wanted to come with a long sustained run. When a horse can give distance away and go up into those gears and still mow horses down like that, it’s incredible. I think he was only going away at the line and he has an awful lot of different options now.”
Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News
Camelot with Joseph O’Brien aboard…
(Photo : Herlad)
INVESTEC DERBY (Group 1)
Epsom Downs, Turf, 2400m
2 June 2012
Geoff Lester - Aidan O’Brien, who has sent out five seconds since he last won the G1 Investec Derby with High Chaparral in 2002, might still have 24 entries for the Blue Riband Classic, the Group 1 Invested Derby at Epsom on June 2, but the record-breaking Ballydoyle trainer had eyes only for G1 2000 Guineas winner Camelot (Ire) (Montjeu) when he unveiled his team of superstars at a press open day Monday morning at the famed training center.
Asked whether he was confident that Camelot, who came from last at Newmarket, would have the stamina for the mile and a half, O’Brien said: “Being by Montjeu, you would have to be optimistic that he will stay, but there are also serious Danehill and Kingmambo traits in Camelot, and he has always been a horse with tremendous speed.”
O’Brien continued, “Epsom is a unique atmosphere and can get to many horses, and, while Camelot is a calm individual and very relaxed, like so many with such an explosive burst of acceleration he has lots of nervous energy, so we have to be careful with him, and he won’t do too much more work before the big day.”
Joseph O’Brien, who will be 19 next week, celebrated his first British Classic success on Camelot at Newmarket, and his father admitted that both he and his wife Anne-Marie will be the proudest parents in the world if he happens to win at Epsom.
“We are enjoying what is a fairytale with Joseph riding these big winners, but I don’t even want to think about how I would feel if the dream became reality at Epsom,” he said. “It could all have ended in disaster in the French Guineas on Sunday when Furner’s Green took a fatal fall passing the winning post.”
“Camelot has been a special horse from day one,” O’Brien said of the likely Derby favourite. “We were very nervous before the Guineas, especially as we knew that Joseph was going to drop him out and ride him like a doubtful stayer. Joseph wanted him to learn at Newmarket, and what I liked was the way that Camelot came through the gaps between horses and put his head down and fought. Camelot has the looks, the pedigree and the presence, and he reminds me of a dressage horse in that his movement is perfection.”
As for his rising star stable jockey, O’Brien offered, “Joseph has never known anything but horses from the moment he could walk. He used to sit in the back of the jeep with me on the gallops in the mornings before he went to school, and then he would ride out every weekend. He has been involved in all the discussions about the horses from an early age, and he has been with us in the good days and the ordinary days. Joseph rides out every morning, and our other three children have also starting riding out, but we all know nothing else. We don’t do holidays - apart from when we go to the Breeders’ Cup!”
“We are all very excited about the Derby, but it is a long time since we have won (39 losers since High Chaparral), and many a year we have come home feeling very humble. We have done everything we can, and now we can, but hope and pray that Camelot is good enough.”
Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News
Pour Moi wins the Investec Derby (Gr1)
(Image : Guardian)
INVESTEC DERBY (Gr1)
Epsom Downs, 4 June 2011
Susan Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith’s Pour Moi (Ire) (Montjeu), who burst onto the Epsom scene only after a successful run in the Gr2 Prix Greffulhe at Saint-Cloud on May 7, finally provided Andre Fabre with a victory in the Gr1 Investec Derby after nine failed attempts. Brought with his familiar rattle from last to first by the 19-year-old jockey prodigy Mickael Barzalona, the 4-1 second choice grabbed the Ballydoyle outsider Treasure Beach (GB) (Galileo) in the shade of the post with his jockey standing up in the irons in celebration.
“He’s a good horse, and is the one I wanted to win this race with,” Fabre said after saddling the first French-trained Blue Riband winner since Empery in 1976. “It is no accident that he has won. I was surprised to see he had two accelerations, one to catch up and another gear to win. Running a mile and a half for the first time helped him. It is such a pleasure to win this race with my young jockey - I couldn’t be happier.” He continued, “He gave everything today and deserves a rest. I will probably give him a summer break and bring him back for a prep ahead of the G1 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (at Longchamp October 2). All horses improve with time.”
In the end, a head separated the front two, with The Queen’s 5-2 favorite Carlton House (Street Cry) 3/4 of a length behind in third, having run a genuine race after missing the kick and losing a shoe late on.
Trainer of Carlton House, Sir Michael Stoute told PA Sport, “He’s run very well, but things just haven’t gone right. He had a hold-up close to the race and during it he got too far back and then had to run wide into the straight. He’s still a high-class colt, and he will have a big day.”
INVESTEC DERBY (Gr1)
Sir Michael Stoute
Alain de Royer-Dupre
Lemon Drop Kid
Mahmoud Al Zarooni
Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News
(Photo : Racingbase)
INVESTEC DERBY (Gr1)
Epsom Downs Racecourse
4 June 2011
The Queen’s Carlton House (Street Cry) will face a maximum of 16 rivals in Saturday’s G1 Investec Derby after the six-day declarations were made Monday. Almost certain to start favorite for the blue riband, the Sir Michael Stoute trainee will face a clutch of colts from Coolmore interests with the list showing a quintet from Aidan O’Brien’s Ballydoyle stable alongside the Andre Fabre-trained Pour Moi (Ire) (Montjeu).
The Queen’s Racing Manager John Warren had nothing but good news for fans of the G2 Dante Stakes winner yesterday. “Carlton House is all on target for Epsom,” Warren said. “He had a nice blow yesterday at Newmarket and the trainer is very happy with him at this point. Carlton House will be kept ticking over this week. There is excitement all round and I think the whole country is starting to focus on it and everyone is excited by the prospect.”
Godolphin left in a trio, but are expected to field a sole representative in the general 16-1 shot Ocean War (GB) (Dalakhani). Nevertheless, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum will be watching the unfolding story of Carlton House keenly, as he bred the colt and presented him to the monarch as a present. “I am sure he would be absolutely thrilled, almost as excited as The Queen,” Racing Manager Simon Crisford commented yesterday. “Obviously, everyone wants The Queen to win and we’ll all be trying our best to beat Carlton House, but having gifted the colt to The Queen I think it would mean a huge amount to Sheikh Mohammed. He’s incredibly excited about the whole possibility.”
As a racehourse owner, The Queen has had nine attempts to win the Epsom Derby - with a second place (Aureole, Coronation year, 1953) the best. Her last entry was thirty years ago. Her previous entries are detailed below:
AUREOLE (1953 - 2nd)
Aureole came closest to giving the Queen a Derby victory when runner-up to Pinza at Epsom Downs. Ridden by Harry Carr, the colt was sixth into the home straight and made headway in the final three furlongs but was unable to peg back Pinza.
LANDAU (1954 - 8th)
Landau finished a length second to Rowston Manor in the Lingfield Derby Trial but in the Derby itself, the colt led from three furlongs out until the quarter-mile mark, at which point he weakened tamely to finish eighth under Willie Snaith as Never Say Die went on to win.
ATLAS (1956 - 5th)
Sent off a 50/1 shot, Atlas made late headway at Epsom, coming home strongly under Harry Carr, to take fifth, a little over three lengths behind the victorious Lavandin.
DOUTELLE (1957 - 10th)
A winner of the Lingfield Derby Trial, Doutelle was at 100/6 chance for the Derby. But he was never in contention, trailing in tenth behind the winner Crepello under jockey Harry Carr.
MINER’S LAMP (1958 - 6th)
Miner’s Lamp’s won Epsom’s Blue Riband Trial Stakes but was never able to challenge the front rank in the Derby and shared sixth place behind the winner, Hard Ridden.
ABOVE SUSPICION (1959 - 5th)
Sent off at 100/6 for the Derby, Above Suspicion raced towards the rear under Doug Smith before making strong progress in the home straight, running on to take fifth, three lengths behind his victorious stablemate, Parthia.
ENGLISH HARBOUR (1978 - 18th)
Ridden by Joe Mercer, English Harbour was never a factor in the Derby as he trailed home a distant 18th behind Shirley Heights, a horse he had finished fifth behind on his two-year-old debut in Newmarket’s Limekiln Stakes.
MILFORD (1979 - 10th)
Sent off the 15/2 third favourite under Lester Piggott, the Royal colt weakened in the straight to finish about 15 lengths behind the triumphant Troy.
CHURCH PARADE (1981 - 5th)
Church Parade kept on at one pace under Willie Carson to take fifth, 18 lengths behind the imperious Shergar.
Extract from Thoroughbred Daily News
Click above to watch Investec Derby - Heritage and History (2010)
(Image and Footage : Investec Derby)
Epsom Downs Racecourse
4 June 2011
Saturday 4 June 2011 sees the running of the Investec Derby at Epsom Downs Racecourse; a group one flat race run over a distance of 1 mile, 4 furlongs and 10 yards open to three-year-old thoroughbred colts and fillies. It is the world’s greatest flat race. It is also the race that every Owner, Trainer and Jockey want to win more than any other.
The town of Epsom first became famous for its natural mineral water in 1618 when a local farmer, Henry Wicker, took his cattle up to a watering hole on the Downs. The alleged healing properties of the water brought crowds from London who wanted to escape the city squalor in return for clean country air.
In 1661 Sir Isaac Newton, one of the greatest scientists and mathematicians in history, commenced his education at Trinity College, Cambridge. The same year saw the first recorded race meeting held on the Epsom and Walton Downs. It was in the summer of 1780 when one of today’s greatest sporting spectacles was established.
Edward Smith Stanley, the 12th Earl of Derby, organised a friendly competition for himself and his friends to race their three-year-old fillies over one and a half miles. He named his race The Oaks after his estate. The following year a new race was added, a race that would determine the Best of the Best for both the racing and breeding of racehorses. The title of the race was to be decided by the tossing of a coin between the Earl of Derby and Sir Charles Bunbury, a leading racing figure of the day and friend of the Earl’s.
This tossed coin was won by Stanley and the mile race would be known as ‘The Derby’; won incidentally, that very first year by Sir Charles Bunbury’s horse, Diomed.
In 1913 suffragette Emily Davison threw herself in front of King George V’s horse Anmer, bringing him down. Davison’s skull was fractured and she died four days later. Meanwhile, first past the post Craganour, was disqualified and 100/1 runner-up Aboyeur was awarded the race.
2006 saw a multi-horse finish rivalling that of 1913 as the closest ever. In a four-way photo, Sir Percy beat Dragon Dancer, Dylan Thomas and Hala Bek a short-head, a head and a short-head.
In its 230 years The Derby, now sponsored by Investec in a deal which runs to 2013, has enjoyed a colourful history.
Internationally, 140 other countries now hold a sporting ‘Derby’, but, Epsom still remains ‘The Home of The Derby’, attracting the largest one day sporting crowd in excess of 125,000 who, year upon year descend upon the picturesque Surrey racecourse to be part of something special - The Greatest Horse Race in the World.
National variations include the Prix du Jockey Club, the Irish Derby, the Deutsches Derby, the Derby Italiano and in Australia, the AJC Australian Derby, Queensland Derby, South Australian Derby, the VRC Victoria Derby and WATC Derby. The New Zealand Derby contested at Ellerslie Racecourse, Auckland is the richest Derby in the Southern Hemisphere. Several races in the United States bear the “Derby” name, the most famous of which is the Kentucky Derby.
The race, watched by 7 million in the UK is viewed in over a billion homes worldwide, continues to dominate the media nationally and internationally and with stories such as Sea the Stars winning in 2009 and going on to become the most valuable horse in the world the race will continue to flourish in its future.
A few memorable moments in Derby History :
1805 - One of the horses was brought down by a spectator.
1838 - Amato never raced before or after winning the Derby.
1844 - The original winner Running Rein was disqualified as he was actually an ineligible four-year-old horse named Maccabeus.
1881 - Iroquois became the first American-bred to win a leg of the British triple crown.
1884 - The race finished with a dead-heat between Harvester and St. Gatien.
1887 - Merry Hampton is the most recent horse to win the Derby with no previous victories.
1894 - The winner was owned by the Prime Minister at the time, the 5th Earl of Rosebery.
1901 - The first year in which a mechanical starting gate was used.
1909 - Minoru was the first Derby winner owned by a reigning monarch, King Edward VII, who had previously won twice as Prince of Wales.
1913 - The 6/4 favourite Craganour, owned by Charles B. Ismay, brother of J. Bruce Ismay of the Titanic, was controversially disqualified, and the race was awarded to the 100/1 outsider Aboyeur. Suffragette Emily Davison is struck by King George V’s horse, Anmer, she dies four days later.
1916 - Fifinella, who also won the Oaks, is the most recent of six fillies to win the race. The previous five were Eleanor (1801), Blink Bonny (1857), Shotover (1882), Signorinetta (1908), Tagalie (1912).
1921 - The winner Humorist died two weeks after the race.
1927 - The first Derby to be broadcast by the BBC.
1932 - April the Fifth is the most recent winner trained at Epsom.
1946 - Airborne is the most recent of 4 grey horses to win the Derby.
1953 - Pinza was the first winner in the race for the jockey Sir Gordon Richards, after 27 unsuccessful attempts.
1989 - The runner-up Terimon is the longest-priced horse to finish placed in the Derby, at odds of 500/1.
1996 - Alex Greaves became the first (and so far only) lady jockey to ride in the race. She finished last on the filly Portuguese Lil.
1998 - The most recent filly to take part, the 1,000 Guineas winner Cape Verdi, started as 11/4 favourite but could only finish 9th.
2007 - Authorized provided jockey Frankie Dettori with his first winner in the Derby after 14 previous attempts.
2008 - Jim Bolger, the trainer of New Approach, had left the horse entered for the race “by mistake”, having not initially intended to run.
Extracts from Epsom Derby and Wikipedia
View across the Royal Durban Golf Course towards the Greyville Grandstand
(Photo : The Royal Durban Golf Club)
Woolavington 2000 & Daily News 2000
Greyville, 4 June 2011
The first Saturday in June is famously remembered for the running of the Investec (English) Derby (Gr.1), and its renewal tends to overwhelm all other news events around it. Locally, a breed-shaping duo of races takes its own place in our calendar, in the shape of the Daily News 2000 (Gr.1) and the Woolavington 2000 (Gr.1), as-often-as-not pointers to the outcome of the three-year-old colts and fillies championships.
These take place this weekend at the home of the Vodacom Durban July, the Greyville circuit which lies in one of the most picturesque settings any racecourse occupies anywhere in the world. Those that know the city of Durban, will know the city bowl and the principal residential area, the Berea. The 3000m circuit (one of the biggest racecourses in the world), which embraces the Royal Durban Golf Club and lies between the Berea (a range of hills overlooking the city and the Indian ocean) and the central business district, which means it provides a vista on big race days for many of the residents of the city from their favourable perches on the Berea, the track also serves as a “through road” (via subways) for most of the city’s business traffic on its way home on an evening.
Back to the races. The press seem to think that the Woolavington is a one-horse race, dominated by the irrepressible Igugu, whom as most of our readers know was a R1 million graduate of the 2009 Summerhill Ready To Run draft. She is the first filly in South African history to win the Triple Tiara, and she is the reigning favourite for the Vodacom Durban July. The only question mark over Igugu, lies in the fact that she’s had a very long season, kicking off in August of last year, in her preparation for her meeting with Hollywoodboulevard in the Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup, and she’s been on the go ever since. If she’s able to maintain her form right through to the July, she’s going to be a formidable opponent for anyone wishing to cross swords with her.
The Daily News 2000 is an altogether different matter, and here, because all the runners in Classics start at level weights, the merit ratings of the horses engaged are usually a good guide. Most of the top three-year-old colts are engaged, and from a Summerhill perspective, we have Black Wing running off a merit rating of 100, earned principally for the fact that he’s unbeaten in his last four starts. He’s a progressive sort, but whether he’s up to beating the likes of Run For It, Top Seller, English Garden etc, only Saturday will tell us. Paul Gadsby, one-time top jockey, raconteur and newly-turned trainer, has fluked this one in his first year at his new profession. “Fluked” is probably not an appropriate word here, as Gadsby chose him and personally rode the horse on the Summerhill Gallops, from the ranks of those that were left on the farm, for a paltry R50,000. This will be some kind of a fairytale for owner Clive Murphy, if Black Wing pulls it off, though he’s not yet faced this kind of opposition. That said, his last run did tell us something though, as he bumped a very promising older sort in Mike de Kock’s Argentinean import, Esteco, on his last outing, and this one has since franked the form impressively on his next racecourse visit.
Black Wing’s family goes back just one generation to one of Summerhill’s foundation mares, Final Wonder, the last (and the only) foal by the great champion stallion, Persian Wonder. His dam is a sister to the South African Classic (Gr.1) ace, Last Watch, and she won herself up to 2400m, so stamina should not be a limiting factor.
But the fairytale? We’ll know by 17:23 hours Saturday (Channel 232, or visit www.summerhill.co.za, click blog.)