Thanks for Graham Richards for this Derby 2018 preview with Timeform and FSF (Graham’s Form and Speed rating). You can learn more about Graham and his services here: grahamrichardsonline.co.uk JP
4:30 Epsom 2 JUNE 2018
1m4f (1m 4f 6y) Investec Derby (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies) (Class 1) (3yo)
|SAXON WARRIOR||126||SAXON WARRIOR||120|
|ROARING LION||120||ROARING LION||115|
|YOUNG RASCAL||116||YOUNG RASCAL||110|
|THE PENTAGON||114||THE PENTAGON||110|
|KNIGHT TO BEHOLD||113||KNIGHT TO BEHOLD||108|
|DELANO ROOSEVELT||113||DELANO ROOSEVELT||103|
|DEE EX BEE||112||DEE EX BEE||108|
|KEW GARDENS||110||KEW GARDENS||105|
|SEVENNA STAR||109||SEVENNA STAR||104|
Since 1997, stall one has housed just one winner, while stall two has not produced a winner in the same period. Stalls three and four have seen four winners. Twelve runners in the field since 1997: Winners from stalls 8, 10, 8, 4, 9, 10.
There looks sure to be a decent pace on with Knight To Behold almost certain to make the running. He breaks from stall two which will likely tow Saxon Warrior into a position Mr Moore is comfortable with. In addition, Zabriskie breaks from stall eight. One imagines he may also play the part of the “Hare”. Whilst Knight To Behold ran away with the Lingfield Derby Trial, it is hard to imagine the “ Ballydoyle battalions” allowing him an equally easier time in front.
The Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial Stakes was a decent trial. One can take several views on the race. The common factor is the front three will all appreciate the step up to a mile and a half. Delano Roosevelt caught the eye, having been outpaced when the tempo quickened, finishing best of all into second. Unfortunately, we are not party to the state of fitness each colt on that day, nor their improvement since that run. Personal opinion is that Delano Roosevelt, who possesses a good blend of speed for a mile and stamina for this trip, will come out on top. Young Rascal is improving at a rate of knots. He overcame traffic problems at Chester, while running with the choke out in the first part of the race. Young Rascal stays the trip, has a pilot riding at the top of his game, and is drawn next to Zabriskie who should tow him into a decent position.He should confirm form with Dee Ex Bee despite the latter’s late flourish at Chester.
Roaring Lion took time to come to himself this year. However, he put that behind him with a taking performance in the Dante. His breeding suggests the trip will suit, though I am unsure if the track will. If he can be produced with a late challenge his speed may prove a telling factor. However, his tendency to hang to his left, on a track with a camber taking him that way, might catch him out. The final trial was a Classic and one that has produced many winners of the race.
In the 2000 Guineas, Saxon Warrior ran out an impressive winner. He was described by one paddock watcher as, a good-sized strong colt reminiscent of Sea The Stars. Masar finished third that day possessing the benefit of race fitness. Saxon Warrior won the race smoothly, despite not looking at full-fitness. As for his breeding, with Galileo on one side and a seven-furlong winner on the other, people are questioning his ability to see out the trip. His dam, seven furlong winner Maybe, also finished a close up fifth in the Oaks. Her dam was a sprinter (Sumora). She came from a mare (Rain Flower) that produced an Oaks winner in Dancing Rain. I suggest there is enough stamina in the favourite’s make-up for this trip. Indeed, the fact that connections are talking of a “Triple Crown” assault suggests they are convinced he will stay.
Derby 2018 tips:
My first three, in order of preference, are Saxon Warrior, Young Rascal, and Delano Roosevelt.
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