Epsom Derby Festival | Four To Follow: La-La Land

It’s time for the biggest Classic of the year, the Derby. The race, which is defined by a single piece of wood, and often the makings of legends. This race has seen so many stars, it could create its own universe. It’s looking to add one more to that illustrious cast today. But who will it be? Plus, there’s the Dash and two more Group races to get stuck into. It’s Derby day’s Four To Follow.


Le Freak

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2:00 – Princess Elizabeth Stakes (Group Three) – Chic Colombine @ 15/2 (Unibet)

Despite only two three-year-olds in the race, they have a decent record in the race with three wins in the last ten years. Chic Colombine is the pick of the bunch. With a generous 12-pound allowance, a liking for soft ground and coming back down from Group One company, she should outclass her rather out of form rivals.

One of those out of form rivals, is Astral Beau who should prove better with a second bite of the cherry. She was a close third in this race last year on firm ground, but the ease should suit her better. For some reason, she wasn’t at all good at Newmarket in the Dahlia and it should be more of a decent contest, with a bit of form from Charyn in the Sandown Mile backing her up. 9/1 (BetVictor, Unibet).


A Regal Gesture

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2:35 – Betfred Diomed Stakes (Group Three) – Regal Reality @ 9/2 (General)

If there’s one horse suited to Group Three level, it’s Regal Reality. He has a good record at this level, with five wins out of nine. He won this race last year, the only race he won last season. It could be a sign that he is aimed at this race, but that’s whether he’ll break from the stalls well. He can manage all types of ground, so the extra juice that Epsom seems to have won’t bother him at all.

And again, I find myself coming back to Royal Scotsman. It was obvious he was outclassed at Group One level in the Lockinge, so a drop two grades is a big plus. He’s also top rated, so can’t be written off too soon either. It will be a challenge to see whether he will suit Epsom, but two wins at Goodwood should put him in good stead. Decent chance, who is being chipped away at 7/1 (William Hill).


Soft And Sly

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3:45 – Aston Martin “Dash” (Premier Handicap) – Silky Wilkie @ 4/1 (General)

The main area to bet for this race is the pace map. Silkie Wilkie is drawn high, which has produced three winners in the last ten years and it’s often where you need to be. He’s drawn next to two runners who should make the running on the rail. Follow those in and he should have a decent shot. He didn’t run too badly at Musselburgh. He finished second in last year’s contest and is a massive eight pounds down. Should run a blinder today on the weights evidence.

Dream Composer is also one who’s drawn next to the pace. He’s in between Antiphon and Democracy Dilemma., but may be held up for a run, which could help him up a slight decent in the final 100 yards. He can easily handle the softer ground, which should also aid him. He’s still at a fair weight with five pounds taken off him. Big race incoming from Dream Composer at 10/1 (William Hill).

The Bell Conductor is one who should produce a big run at a big price. Drawn next to Antiphon, he should be able to latch on to the pace and go well down the helter-skelter of five furlongs at Epsom. Epsom is an unknown, but soft ground should help him, as his last win was on bottomless. He’s a similar profile to Dream Composer and should go well for Northern raider Craig Lidster. 20/1 (William Hill, Betfred).


Angelic Dodger

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4:30 – Betfred Derby (GROUP ONE) – Los Angeles @ 9/2 (General)

City Of Troy really disappointed at the Guineas. But it’s rather the same argument with Ylang Ylang. He may be wanting a step up, but it just may be too much. Even though he’s by Justify, he only ran, and won, once at a mile-and-a-half.

Stablemate Los Angeles is far better qualified for this race. He is by Derby winner Camelot, currently unbeaten, won a recognised trial and has a mile-and-a-half throughout his family. The form hasn’t been tested form the Leopardstown Derby Trial, yet he was Group One winner over a mile-and-a-quarter at two. Staying pedigree is in his bones and, on paper, looks a stronger chance than City Of Troy.

Ancient Wisdom cannot be discounted. Despite being beaten by six lengths at York, he looks to be a better horse over a mile-and-a-half. The Dubawi curse was broken by Ezeliya yesterday and can be matched as Ancient Wisdom’s mare also achieving over a mile-and-a-half. He’s the best to come out of the Dante, and esteemed trail. 6/1 (General) may be made to look foolish.

Voyage is also steeped in Derby history. His grandsire Galileo has produced multiple Derby winners, and he’s by Derby winner Golden Horn. His family have been prominent over a mile-and-a-quarter, but that golden touch of Golden Horn could make him stay the distance. He’s the least experienced horse in the field with one run and one win, but the form has been backed up by two horses further down the field. Certain each-way claims at 25/1 (William Hill).

The very best of luck!

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