Epsom Derby, Saturday 5th June 2021

Discussion in 'Horse Racing' started by Grendel, Apr 1, 2021.

  1. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    With prices starting to contract in the Derby market it is perhaps time to consider any potential value in the contenders we have already seen.

    With High Definition now a best price of 4/1, he is in the area of no value for the average punter. I had a bet on him at 25/1 going into the Beresford because I thought he had the look of a real stayer, who would probably become Aidan's leading hope going into the winter, in a season where most of his good colts looked like milers or perhaps 10f horses. He looked in trouble in the Beresford but started to stay on and eventually finished with a strong run that wore his opponents down. The style of the success seemed to suggest that 12F will see him in a better light this season.

    High Definition is in the 2000 Guineas betting but it would seem folly to run him there. I also backed him at 20/1 for the St Leger in case he lacks the toe for a Derby. He has questions based on the trends from the Beresford and the suitability of Epsom but is part of a 3YO generation with a dearth of strong staying candidates.

    I have pretty much ruled out any of the horses likely to run in the 2000 Guineas as players for Epsom. Often described as the best trial for the Derby, the mile classic has seen runners stepping up in trip after a staying on effort in the Guineas but this season the race looks short of that type of contender. The fact also remains that most Guineas winners do not go on to follow up in the 12F race.

    So what of the other contenders who might stay?

    Mac Swiney won the old Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster where One Ruler was second but that was a poor renewal on bad ground. One Ruler was second and I would prefer the Godolphin horse for this season on better going. Bolger's colt was put in his place several times last year and his key wins came on heavy ground, I think he would be in trouble on good ground round Epsom and his trainer has had it lean for some time now at the top level and he is no concern to the O'Brien troops in the main. 20/1 Mac Swiney makes zero appeal to me.

    Uncle Bryn is 2/2 for John Gosden but they were a class 5 maiden and a class 5 novice. I learned my lesson last season with Waldkonig (albeit he was more impressive visually in a single start) and Uncle Bryn's form looks a long way short of his position in the Derby betting. There were some wins from his second start but they cam in Handicap races off a mark of 73. The son of Sea The Stars just doesn't appeal at all to me at a general 20/1.

    Cleveland is generally next in the lists at 25/1 and he had two 5th places before getting off the mark on his 3rd start. Aidan seemed positive about him is the stable write up but I am not keen on the 551 profile. His races have not worked out very well at all and his last two starts have yielded zero winners in 34 starts. The ground has been pretty heavy when he has run so there is a chance he will be better on a sound surface but I would need to see him prove this first and he needs a stone to catch up with last season's better colts.

    Bolshoi Ballet made a promising debut at Newmarket before returning to Ireland to shed his maiden tag in good style. The well travelled youngster was off to France next but was only 5th in a bad ground Group 1 at Saint Cloud over 10F and that is a really strong test of stamina for a young colt. Bolshoi Ballet has six full siblings, the best of whom was Southern France who was 3rd in Kew Gardens in the St Leger. There seems little doubt Bolshoi Ballet will stay based on his relations but will he be suited by Epsom, or will he be one who goes Queens Vase/St Leger this year?

    Van Gogh didn't really appeal to me until his final start last year. Well beaten by Cadillac and then behind One Ruler in the Autumn Stakes, he had only a maiden win to his name when lining up for the Group 1 Criterium at Saint Cloud in October. That was a mile race on Heavy going and Van Gogh ran out a ready winner by 4 lengths from the decent French colt Normandy Bridge. That seemed a breakthrough win but the Crisford horse Jadoomi looked a poor value favourite that day and the Appleby runner La Barrosa was disappointing. Van Gogh's dam Imagine won the Oaks but had campaigned at a shorter prior to what turned out to be her final race and I would have some concern whether Van Gogh will stay 12F. I feel another visit to France may be on the cards and he would be more likely to get soft ground there. I would be thinking of the French 2000 Guineas and the shorter French Derby for him. Aidan has ample ammunition for the Newmarket Guineas and has a clear favourite for the Epsom Derby in High Definition.

    We quickly get into 33/1 and upwards for the rest of the field and plenty can be eliminated as exposed colts or ones with little chance of staying. I believe that a few unraced colts will emerge as contenders this spring and the key will be to identifying likely candidates just before they make their debuts, because bubbles will be bursting and any emerging talent will be slashed in the aftermath of a winning start to their career.

    I am happy with having High Definition at 25/1 for the moment but will probably play something else during the coming six weeks or so. 4/1 is dire value but the vibes seem strong and not many others appeal to me. One horse who won't win it is Darain. Quoted at 33/1 by William Hill, the horse is 4YO and has left these shores to pursue a career in the USA after a disappointing season for John Gosden which didn't recoup much of his £3.5 Million price tag.

    Good luck if playing.
     
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  2. Crypto Capone

    Crypto Capone 1 of the top judges in Europe

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    Van Gogh has a similar 2yo profile to his dam Imagine, highly tried in Group races early on before winning a maiden and taking form to new level at the back end. I think it took them a while to work him out after he showed early speed in his first race, his 3 best runs came in the Tyros, the Autumn and the Criterium International, the only 3 times he was held up. Boudot said after the French race Obrien stressed it was important to get him settled and covered up and I think that is the key to him. From the maiden win to Newmarket and then to France, no other horse was improving at that rate at the end of the season and he looked an absolute monster in his last start, towering over and outclassing some decent Group 3 horses. Obrien has reported that he has grown since then which is worrying for his rivals, I suspect he could have left that 2yo brigade well behind and he is the one horse im looking forward to this season.

    "He’s done unbelievably well over the winter and we are very happy with him. He’s grown into a big powerful horse. We got loads of experience into him last year and his mind is very good. He’s working like a horse that has enough pace for a Guineas, but his profile would suggest he could stay a mile-and-a-half. He’ll definitely prefer better ground."

    With Imagine being by Saddlers Wells, she has not been able to go to any of their proper 12f sires and has been bred to Giants Causeway, Rock Of Gibraltar, War Front, Kingmambo and Danehill, mainly 8-10f producers. I think American Phaorah is going to prove to be a very versatile sire stamina wise and a producer of genuine 12f+ horses when bred to these Saddlers Wells/Galileo mares, he already has last years 14f Park Hill winner out of a Galileo mare, so im confident Van Gogh will stay 12f.

    Whether he turns up at Epsom might depend on how strong Obriens other prospects are looking, Obrien has never won the French Derby and I just think Van Gogh might be in his A Team, he already achieved 114 rating and he looks English Derby class to me rather than the B team that usually goes to France. The favourite has achieved far less on paper despite his inflated rating for scraping home in a poor Beresford Stakes, and he does not do anything quickly, he doesnt look likely to be one of those proper Derby horses who will win 10f G1s like Australia and Golden Horn, Van Gogh could be that type though. I suppose if High Definition wins the Derrinstown by 10L then Van Gogh will probably go to France, but is he continues to look a bit slow, then it would be hard to take Van Gogh out of your Epsom team.

    Ill be backing him for the Derby at 20/1 and the Arc at 33/1, if he goes to France ill be backing him there, wherever he runs I will be on.
     
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  3. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    As well as looking out for any, as yet, unraced colts, I will also be looking at those well bred colts who had a very late debut as a 2yo. Now that 2yo races run right to the end of the year it gives those late developers a chance to have an introduction at 2, rather than have to wait until April

    If anyone has a way of pinpointing 2yo races from August onwards that would be much appreciated
     
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  4. OddDog

    OddDog Mild mannered janitor
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    Might have to rename the thread „The Cazoo Derby 2021 Early Thoughts“

    Oh dear <doh>
     
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  5. NassauBoard

    NassauBoard Well-Known Member

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    That image says it all!!
     

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  6. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Agree High Definition looks a hugely promising colt. You've said he has to act at Epsom and that would be my main concern with him. He looked a trifle ungainly to me but that could be his immaturity: I would want to see him on a turning track before being convinced. I’d also ask whether he’s certain to get 12f. His damsire is Fastnet Rock (a source of speed in Australia) while his great damsire is Invincible Spirit (usually a source of milers). His great granddam is the fast miler Sonic Lady, who was a very good racefilly though a bit of a lady. If he doesn't quite act and doesn't quite stay he may be short of energy in the last furlong at Epsom.
     
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  7. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    Sonic Lady. Lovely filly she was. That's another racehorse name we used for our home bred afghan hounds. Not a lot of people want to know that
     
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  8. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    Ir could be worse I suppose. Imagine the poster of a pair of hairy arse cheeks and the title The Wazoo Derby 2021 :emoticon-0172-mooni
     
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  9. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    Bolshoi Ballet took time to get on top in today's Ballysax but ran out a decisive winner. I was concerned by the drift to 3/1 when considering a bet today and if he had opened at that price I would probably have been on. There is a paranoia when you see a horse double in price from 6/4 and there is money for others in the race. I wasn't seeing it with Taipan coming in and Lough Derg looked a strange mix of Galileo and Easton Angel, who was essentially a 5F horse who won the Scurry Stakes when trained by Michael Dods. Wuqood was disappointing but Dermot Weld is firing at 7% at the moment.

    Bolshoi Ballet was moved to a general 10/1 second favourite for the Derby but he was getting 3 lbs from a 33/1 runner-up who came in rated 103 and I don't think 10/1 is any value. I said in the opening post that he looked more of a St Leger type and he is favourite for that race now. Aidan said that the colt will have another run before the Derby, perhaps in the Derrinstown.

    High Definition was said to be working well enough but that he will have only one race before the Derby. I would like to see him at Chester from a personal point of view. His best price for Epsom is now 7/2 and that seems a positive vibe.

    The colt who won the Leopardstown Handicap later on, was cut to 25/1 for the Derby. That would be an unusual route to Epsom. Sir Lamorak won in a faster time than Bolshoi Ballet but was landing a Handicap off 85 on his fourth start. He was actually 5th to Bolshoi Ballet on his first start and the ran behind another useful stablemate when 4th to Arturo Toscanini on heavy ground next time up. The colt will go up the ratings of course but I don't like the profile for a potential Derby candidate and couldn't have him on my mind at all.

    Arturo Toscanini is 6/1 for Tuesday's Feilden Stakes and I am toying with that in a very open looking renewal of the 9F Listed race. Golden Horn won it before going on to Epsom Glory but Arturo Toscanini's dam was a miler at most, so I doubt the colt will last a Derby trip outside France but he should be fine at the Fielden trip. Varian's Royal Champion and Appleby's Secret Protector head the Feilden betting at 7/2JF and the Godolphin colt is the more experienced of the two with three starts but he doesn't really appeal to me overall and Royal Champion surely isn't bred to get 12F? Arturo Toscanini appeals as the bet at 6/1 in the circumstances.
     
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  10. Steveo

    Steveo Well-Known Member

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    I wasn't that impressed by Bolshoi Ballet today.
    I think a better Ballydoyle horse will emerge in the coming weeks.

    I spent the morning filling in forms in order to attend this year though.
    I rolled my ticket over from last year and got an invite the other week. Apparently a small crowd is being allowed to attend this year. (the race will take place a few weeks before the 21st June reopening here in the UK) Anyway filled in my consent form and am now good to go in June! <cheers>
     
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  11. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    Royal Champion was well thumped in the Feilden and the Varian colt was pushed out to 50/1 for the Derby. I don't think he had a prayer of getting 12F and I expect him to be dropped to a mile next time, after weakening over 9F today in a Listed race that looked more like a Handicap in terms of quality. Yet another Varian horse to go off short and not follow through.

    Arturo Toscanini was a huge flop today and was tailed off after looking as slow as the Kon-tiki today. He was pushed out to 100/1 for the Derby and I wouldn't take that price for him to even run in the race.

    Looking at rank outsiders over the winter, I toyed with Sea The Shells from the Johnston yard at 66/1 but I doubt it was much of a race he won. I suppose he is similar in profile to Waldkonig in being a contender after winning by miles on the all weather but Sea The Shells has been back to Wolverhampton since and was only a length winner, albeit comfortably, at 2/5 Fav. His official rating is 93 on the all-weather and his odds for Epsom are now 33/1 and seem little value after two class 5 wins.

    For a bit of fun I have had a bet on a rank outsider Southern Lights at 66/1. The son of Sea The Stars had won a barrier trial and then went off favourite in a 7F maiden but was beaten a neck that day. He cost 550,000 Guineas and surely has more to come with time and being upped in distance. He is entered in a 10F Maiden at Leopardstown tomorrow and I think he is likely to win it despite trainer Joseph having opposition from his father's colt King Of The Castle. Khartoum was third in behind Southern Lights before winning next time and he is entered in Craven this week.

    Fantasy Island bet of course but there are so many no-hopers in the Derby list that I felt it was ripe for a name to come from the shadows. Southern Lights is entered in the Epsom and Irish Derbies.

    Epsom Derby Southern Lights 66/1 for a probable 2 minute pipedream. :cheesy:
     
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  12. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    Southern Lights defied a drift from 13/8 to 4/1 and scored cosily today. He had a bit of a job getting a clear run but once out he stayed on really well to pull clear by just under 3 lengths. Long way to go of course but Bet365 cut him to 33/1 afterwards and I had a bit more at 66/1 because I feel that is too big in a year with so little realistic prospects.
     
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  13. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    Can't fancy anything for the Derby yet. Hopefully something interesting will crop up. For now, the only one I would be remotely interested in is Mohaafeth at 50/1
     
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  14. Grendel

    Grendel Well-Known Member

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    The Blue Riband didn't look like it solved anything other than that Uncle Bryn doesn't look the part. I went against him with Wirko today and was rewarded but the Godolphin horse won by outstaying two horses who had passed him going into the closing stages. The extra 2F of a Derby seem sure to suit Wirko but the form doesn't look strong enough to me and I would imagine Uncle Bryn heads elsewhere after this. 16/1 for Wirko in the Derby looks way too short.

    High Definition is continuing to shorten an is 5/2 in places now. I think that is potential Emperor's New Clothes territory and if he is exposed as naked when he eventually appears in a trial, the whole Derby market will be in turmoil. I feel that anyone waiting for a value option may find that they are left with poor pickings before much longer.

    Bolshoi Ballet looks more of a Leger horse to me and I am not convinced Epsom will suit him. Aidan's runners last week and today have been posted missing in the trials and I made a decision this morning to have a cover bet on Van Gogh. I have some doubt that he will get the trip but he looked good on his final start last season and at 16/1 you accept that there will a question mark in the mix. There seem very few realistic contenders on the horizon and I would rather have a horse with a chance, that doesn't quite last home, than one who is too slow or simply not good enough. I thought a small stake on Van Gogh at 16/1 was sensible, as he could be a good bit shorter as others fall off the map.

    I couldn't recommend High Definition at his current odds. He is a silly price for what he achieved in the Beresford and he needed every yard that day. I imagine it is a formality that he skips the Guineas and goes Dee Stakes or Chester Vase instead.
     
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  15. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    Well Polling Day will need to be significantly better than Uncle Bryn to tempt Frankie to take the mount for the Derby

    I'm intrigued as to what Frankie could be riding in the Derby. No doubt it will be the best the Gosdens have unless they don't have one good enough

    Gosdens have these entered for the Derby and I'm going to be looking at all of them to see if I can spot one whose odds may shorten significantly

    Law Of The Sea
    Trawlerman
    Uncle Bryn
    Derab
    Polling Day
    Beau Nash
    Zagato
    Daramethos
    Defined
    Imperial Sun

    For starters, interesting that Uncle Bryn was put in his place by Wirko today and Gosden has a once raced Golden Horn colt, out of a Teofilo mare, who beat Wirko (comfortably) over 9.5f, a distance more suited to Wirko. The colt is Beau Nash, currently an unconsidered 50/1 shot; he is entered in the Dante
     
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    Last edited: Apr 21, 2021
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  16. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    Having had a quick glance, I'm going to have to do the same with Charlie Appleby's, given he doesn't have the undefeated Al Waqidi entered
     
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  17. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    One for Nass. What are the stats for Derby winners who won as a 3yo and not subsequently beaten pre the Derby. Doesn't matter if they were beaten as a 2yo or prior to winning as a 3yo
     
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  18. NassauBoard

    NassauBoard Well-Known Member

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    9 out of the last 14 winners came to the race on the back of a win. The database doesn't contain French racing, so the next bit doesn't take into account the French form

    91 UK & Ireland runners won LTO - 8 won the Derby

    Of those 91 -

    4 from 41 won their only 3YO race prior to the Derby
    4 from 33 won their last race and had run twice before the Derby

    17 of the 33 had won all their starts as 3 year olds. With 4 winners being Fame And Glory, Golden Horn, Harzand & Ruler Of The World
     
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  19. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    Great, thanks Nass
     
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  20. Ron

    Ron Well-Known Member
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    I think we can forget Polling Day on that evidence
     
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