Derby factfile: All you need for the greatest Flat race

Epsom Crowd

Epsom: hosts the historic Derby, first run in 1780

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker ( 

 By Peter Scargill 7:00aM 4 JUN 2016 

The time has come for the greatest Flat race in the world – the Investec Derby. Here are ten facts about the Classic to help you make an informed choice when it comes to picking the winner…

1. The Derby is named after the 12th Earl of Derby who supposedly came out on top in a coin toss with Sir Charles Bunbury to name the new race, which was conceived at a celebration party after the first Oaks in 1779. Bunbury went on to win the first Derby in 1780 with Diomed.

2. Since the first Derby every letter of the alphabet has been represented by a winner except for U, X and Z. Perhaps Ulysses can change that this year? S is the most successful letter followed by P.

3. John Forth is the oldest jockey to win the Derby – he was 60 when winning on Frederick in 1829. Kieren Fallon, rider of Across The Stars, is the oldest rider in the race this year aged 51.

4. Kris Kin in 2003 was the first horse to be supplemented for the Derby at the final stage and win the Classic. Golden Horn repeated the trick last year. Wings Of Desire, Cloth Of Stars, Red Verdon and Humphrey Bogart have been added to this year’s race.

5. With four horses being added to the race at £75,000 each, this year’s Derby will be the richest race ever run in Britain with a prize-fund of £1,545,000.

Workforce (Ryan Moore) wins the Derby Epsom 05.06.2010

Workforce (right): was defeated in the 2010 Dante but won at Epsom

  PICTURE: Getty  

6. The Dante Stakes is the best trial for the Derby having been won by the likes of Benny The Dip, North Light, Motivator, Authorized and Golden Horn before they scored at Epsom. Workforce is the only horse to have been beaten in the Dante and then won the Derby.

7. Algometer is the only grey in this year’s Derby. The last grey to win the Classic was Airborne in 1946.

8. Epsom offers a unique test for horses over the Derby trip of 1m4f. The first half mile climbs 184 feet, the equivalent of 12 double decker buses stacked on top of each other. The descent from Tattenham Corner to the line is 89ft.

9. Luck in-running plays a big role around Epsom as not every horse has the talent of Oaks winner Minding to get out of trouble. Horses are not used to races on such undulating courses and the camber in the straight causes horses to roll down towards the inside rail. 

10. The largest winning distance in the race is ten lengths, recorded by Shergar in 1981. The shortest distance is a short-head, most recently recorded by Sir Percy when he scored in 2006.

You can place your bets on the Investec Derby with William Hill, Ladbrokes and now Paddy Power via our mobile app

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