Epsom Derby

Epsom Derby

The Derby is known more internationally as the Epsom Derby, is without any doubt one of the most prestigious thoroughbred horse races in the world. It takes place each year on the first weekend in June at Epsom Racecourse in Surrey and is regarded as the major racing colts Classic of the UK’s flat season.


Epsom DerbyIn the Horse Racing World in the UK, the Epsom Derby is one of the five British Classic Races, the others being the 1000 Guineas, 2000 Guineas, The Oaks and the St Leger and it is the second leg of the English Triple Crown preceded by the 2,000 Guineas and followed by the St. Leger.

The Epsom Derby Betting is open to three-year-old only colts and fillies, however it is rare these days for fillies to take their chances. The equivalent race for fillies only is the Oaks and for older horses the Coronation Cup, both run over the same course and distance.

Most Derby contenders are prepared for the race by running in one or more of the recognised Derby Trials, however many also race in the 2000 Guineas in order to confirm their speed. Derby winners by and large will go on to compete for the big international races later in the season, races such as the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in Paris and the Breeders' Cup Classic in the United States.


Epsom RacingThe Derby is named after the 12th Earl of Derby and had its first official running in 1780 in a race won by a horse called Diomed. The first four Derby’s were over a distance of 1 mile, but this was amended in 1784 to the current distance of 1½ miles.

Its latest winner was New Approach who had been second in the 2000 Guineas one month before. Sinndar, trained by John Oxx in Ireland was the last horse to win both the Epsom Derby and the Arc de Triomphe in the same year, he acheived this in 2000 in a year that also saw him win the Irish Derby. Other great winners of recent years include Lammtarra, who finished his career unbeaten in four races, he is the fastest ever recorded winner of the Derby and he also went on to the Prix de l’Arc de Triomph in the same year; Lammtarra also won the King George & Queen Elizabeth Stakes. Mill Reef was another who went on to win the Derby and the Arc in 1971, yet he was not regarded as the best horse of his day, that honour went to Brigadier Gerrard.

Recent Past Winners

The Epsom Derby has a Roll of Honour which is simply littered with great horses, trainers and jockeys. It is a race that demands speed, particularly in the final two furlongs, it is usually won by a horse amongst the favourites and who have had good recent form. Take a look at the past winners over the last ten years.

2008New ApproachKevin ManningJim Bolger
2007AuthorisedFrankie DettoriPeter Chapple-Hyam
2006Sir PercyMartin DwyerMarcus Tregoning
2005MotivatorJohnny MurtaghMichael Bell
2004North LightKieran FallonSir Michael Stoute
2003Kris KinKieran FallonSir Michael Stoute
2002High ChaparralJohnny MurtaghAiden O'Brien
2001GalileoMick KinaneAiden O'Brien
2000SinndarJohnny MurtaghJohn Oxx
1999OathKieran FallonHenry Cecil