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A dozen top trivia tips for the 2019 Investec Derby

28 May 2019

Who is the youngest runner in this year’s Investec Derby, which is the best stall to be drawn in and how many Sirs have won in the past?

Sir Dragonet would become the ninth Sir to rise to the occasion in the Investec Derby. Picture: Racingfotos.com

Want to impress your family and friends with the inside track on the Investec Derby at Epsom on Saturday? Here’s 12 trivia titbits.

1 TEN OUT OF TEN

Cannot be bothered to study the form? You may prefer to take a shortcut and simply back the horse who is drawn in stall ten. Had you adopted a policy of cheering for the horse in stall ten since 1986 you would have cheered home Shahrastani (11-2), Reference Point (6-4), Nashwan (5-4), Quest For Fame (7-1), Generous (9-1), Galileo (11-4), Sir Percy (6-1), Ruler Of The World (7-1) and, wait for it, last year Masar at 16-1. In 2012 there were only nine runners, so a level £10 stake on all stall ten runners in the past 30 years would have reaped a profit of about £270.

2 SURFMAN IS SENIOR RUNNER

Surfman is the oldest horse left in the mix for Saturday’s race – but only just. He was foaled on February 7,  while Broome, Sir Maximus, Sir Dragonet and Telecaster were all born within the next 48 hours. Anthony Van Dyck is the youngest in the line-up, having been foaled on May 19.

3 YES, SIR

Sir Dragonet would become the ninth winner to have the prefix “Sir”. The most recent was Sir Percy in 2006.

4 FANCY THE FAVOURITE?

Since 1965, the favourite has won on 20 occasions. However, the last market leader to oblige was Golden Horn at 13/8 in 2015.

5 RUNNING IN THE FAMILY

Forty-seven winners have been sired by Derby winners. There is a strong chance of that increasing this year because Australia (two runners), Camelot, New Approach and Galileo (seven runners) will be represented.

6 DRAGONET DELIGHT?

Nine Derby winners retired unbeaten – the last being Lammtarra (four races) in 1995. The only horse with an unblemished record in this year’s field is Sir Dragonet, the favourite, who has won each of his two races.

7 LATE TO THE PARTY

Since 1946, four winners have not raced as juveniles: Phil Drake (1955), Morston (1973), Commander In Chief (1993) and Ruler Of The World (2013). Sir Dragonet could join them, having only made his debut on April 25 this year.

8 SUPPLEMENTARY SUPPORT

A supplementary stage was introduced in 1998 and since then there have been two winners, from 25 to have been added,  who have won – Kris Kin in 2003 and Golden Horn in 2015. On Monday,  the owners of Sir Dragonet and Telecaster each paid £85,000 to supplement their contenders.

9 FRANKIE STILL GOING STRONG

Frankie Dettori will be riding in the Derby for the 24th time , probably on Humanitarian, but still lags behind the record 36 which Lester Piggott rode in. The latter also holds the record for number of wins – nine.

10 YARDS APART

When someone tells you ‘they have to stay every yard of the mile and a half trip” you can smugly answer “plus the extra ten yards”. That is the quirky distance of the Derby – a mile and a half, and ten yards. The extra distance made a huge difference in 2006 when Sir Percy got up in the final stride to prevail by a short head after a photo-finish involving four runners.

11 FAST WORK

Workforce is the fastest Derby winner. He scorched home in 2min 31.33sec in 2010, in the process giving Sir Michael Stoute a fifth winner of the race.

12 GIRL POWER

No filly has taken part since Cape Verdi, who was ninth in 1998 after routing her rivals in the 1000 Guineas, and that sequence will continue. In 2017, Diore Lia, a 1,000-1 chance, was set to run but she was withdrawn on the day of the race.