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Home > Epsom Derby 2024 Runners And Riders: Full Horse And Jockey List

Epsom Derby 2024 Runners And Riders: Full Horse And Jockey List

On top of a desperately poor run in the Guineas, the uneasy favourite for today’s Epsom Derby – City of Troy, last year’s champion two-year-old – will have to overcome the ‘coffin box’ draw of stall one. Only Adayar (2021) and Oath (1999) have won from that stall since starting stalls were introduced in 1967.

I am not sure quite how much one should read into the draw in a mile and a half flat race but the course initially takes a right-handed dogleg (favouring those drawn high) and, in a worse-case scenario, a low drawn colt can initially struggle for cover and then get pinned against the rails for Tattenham Hill. How City of Troy avoids that situation will be down to Ryan Moore.

However no horse has ever won from stall two (Sayedati Sadati), stall 11 (Ancient Wisdom) or stall 16 (Voyage). Ironically, given stall 11’s poor record, the neighbouring stall 10 (God’s Window) has produced 11 winners.

Scroll down to read my horse-by-horse guide to the race, plus my predictions and the horse to back.

Epsom Derby 2024 entriesAmbiente Friendly (Jockey: Robert Havlin; Trainer: James Fanshawe; The Gredley Family) 7/1

Cost £80k as one of nine horses bought by owner Bill Gredley on his 90th birthday. Very keen on his comeback at Newmarket over nine furlongs, he looked like the penny had finally dropped when running out an impressive winner of the Lingfield Derby Trial. That’s not all that dropped: his odds for Epsom were slashed from 100-1 to 8-1 after collecting the trial that has thrown up recent Derby winners Anthony Van Dyck and Adayar. Gredley may be a multi-millionaire and Fashawe a regular Group-One winner but set against Coolmore and Godolphin, one for the ‘small’ guys if he wins.Ancient Wisdom (Jockey: William Buick; Trainer: Charlie Appleby; Godolphin) 6/1

Won one of the key juvenile races last autumn, a good winner of the Futurity on very soft ground which put him in the top bracket of last year’s two-year-olds. Needed the race and blew hard for one of Appleby’s after comeback second in the Dante but was firmly put in his box, finishing six lengths behind Economics. He might improve for a step up in trip but 16 days between races is a quick turn around. Through a series of unfortunate events, Godolphin’s only runner.Bellum Justum (Jockey: Oisin Murphy; Trainer: Andrew Balding; King Power Racing) 20/1

A Sea The Stars colt who cost £575,000 as a yearling and is named after the Latin phrase for “fair conduct in war” which is enshrined in the Geneva Convention and of which warring parties never seem to take a blind bit of notice. Will we take any notice of the Andrew Balding colt? Won the Epsom trial over a mile and a quarter with his ears pricked but the form of that now looking questionable. Still, you can only beat what is put in front of you. Not screaming Derby winner at me.City Of Troy (Jockey: Ryan Moore; Trainer: Aidan O’Brien; Magnier, Tabor, Smith) 11/4F

Hailed as ‘Coolmore’s Frankel’ which might well hang round his neck like an albatross if the Guineas is anything to judge by. He beat two home there and “the horse that never gets tired” looked knackered at half way at Newmarket. Too bad to be true or a possibility he has not trained on? O’Brien reckons he might have treated him too much like a god during the winter. I guess tactically they would let him find his feet this time rather than blasting him out – it’s the only way I can see improvement. Auguste Rodin got back up off the mat to win the Derby last year but what are the chances of lightning striking twice? 2/1 apparently.Dallas Star (Jockey: David Egan; Trainer: Adrian Murray; Amo Racing) 40/1

One for football agent Kia Joorabchian, following the pattern, not on his first trainer. Moved to Adrian Murray, a former cattle dealer turned point-to-point trainer who now trades punches with Aidan O’Brien in Group races. This colt was third behind Ancient Wisdom on his first start, ran at Ascot and won at Bath but upgraded himself when winning the Ballysax at Leopardstown on the heavy in April at 50-1 beating The Euphrates by three lengths. Bit of an unknown quantity.Dancing Gemini (Jockey: Dylan Browne McMonagle; Trainer: Roger Teal; Fishdance Limited) 11/1

A very interesting colt. Rated higher than many of his rivals. He clearly has speed to burn as he showed when just failing to get up in the French 2,000 Guineas and not helped either by a pre-race thunderstorm. Had a bit to find with Ancient Wisdom on two-year-old form but looks better now. Bred to get a mile and a half but you slightly wonder if there is too much whoosh in the speed/stamina equation. Well worth trying given his breeding and Roger Teal’s small yard has knocked on Classic doors before. Well worth the shot.Deira Mile (Jockey: Jim Crowley; Trainer: Owen Burrows; Green Team Racing) 25/1

A maiden at two when trained by Charlie Johnston but by no means disgraced at 50-1 when just under three lengths behind Ancient Wisdom in Futurity. Hacked up in novice over a mile and a quarter at Windsor on first start for Owen Burrows. Nevertheless did not look totally straightforward there but in an open year, from an owner who has twice had long-priced seconds in this race an each-way shot at a big price.Euphoric (Jockey: Declan McDonogh Trainer: Aidan O’Brien; Smith, Magnier, Tabor, Westerberg, Brant) 33/1

Colt has run three times, improving to finish a length second to Los Angeles in the Cashel Palace at Leopardstown on his first start. By Frankel and bred by Luca Cumani, a two-time Derby winning trainer, he could easily come on for that last start. Made the running there, can’t believe a horse which cost £1.9m will be sent here for pacemaking duties.God’s Window (Jockey: Kieran Shoemark; Trainer: John & Thady Gosden; Cayton Park Stud) 66/1

Won a three-horse novice stakes at Nottingham last year but has not cut any ice in two trials this season; fourth of four in the Dee Stakes, fifth of seven in the Dante 10 lengths behind the winner Economics. Looks bred to be better over further but that is clutching at straws and he really needs an act of his namesake if he is to trouble the judge in the Derby.Kamboo (Jockey: Richard Kingscote; Trainer: Richard Hughes; Abdulla Al Mansoori) 80/1

By Awtaad, a miler, out of a Galileo mare. Has only run twice and not seen out this year. Won nicely over a mile at Kempton in December beating a horse who has subsequently won impressively but it is still a huge ask to go to Epsom for his first start on turf in the Derby on his reappearance. Lammtarra and Shaamit both managed that though and King of Steel nearly did last year. Nevertheless a long shot.Los Angeles (Jockey: Wayne Lordan; Trainer: Aidan O’Brien; Westerberg, Magnier, Tabor, Smith) 6/1

Coolmore has done all the artists, poets and composers so now we move on to US cities and this looks a good one, in my view Aidan O’Brien’s best shot at a record-extending 10th winner. A laid-back individual, he looked workmanlike in his Leopardstown trial, beaten by Euphoric by a length but he will surely come on for the run and an extra two furlongs. Other positives are that he is already a Group One winner, he is unbeaten in three starts and has the temperament. A big boy, his size could throw him on Epsom’s rollercoaster course.Macduff (Jockey: Rossa Ryan; Trainer: Ralph Beckett; Juddmonte) 10/1

From the same team as Westover, who was an unlucky third two years ago before going on to finish second in Arc a year later, following the similar path; Sandown trial, Breakfast with the Stars for a casual spin round Epsom, the race. Has three and a half lengths to make up on Arabian Crown on Sandown form. Bred to get a mile and a half. Needs to step up on reappearance. Doesn’t show at home so trainer is as much in the dark about his chances as rest of us.Mr Hampstead (Jockey: Sean Levey; Trainer: Dominic Ffrench-Davies; Amo Racing) 150/1

Cost $575,000, he is a collector’s item in that there are not many three-year-olds by Galileo knocking around. Still a maiden after three starts. Two and a quarter lengths behind Voyage at Newbury and did not fare much better in a maiden at Chester next time. Sister Savethelastdance runner-up in Oaks 12 months ago. Moved from Roger Varian recently with Amo’s other horses in the yard. To win it is often said you need a Group horse in a handicap, he looks like a handicapper in a Group One,Sayedaty Sadaty (Jockey: Tom Marquand; Trainer: Andrew Balding; Ahmad Al Shaikh) 33/1

One win from seven starts. Another whose experience appears to outweigh his talent. Had a spin round Epsom as a two-year-old but not sure that counts for much. Bit of a weido, he’s the only runner with an ‘R’ in his form from when he ran out at Windsor, through a rail and dumped his jockey so not necessarily guaranteed to turn left at Tattenham Corner. Looks like he is here for reasons other than natural ability.Tabletalk (Jockey: James Doyle; Trainer: Tom Clover Abdulla Al Mansoori) 125/1

A bold shout to supplement the Chelmsford all-weather maiden winner into this race for £75k but the open nature of 245th edition means it might not be the biggest gamble of all time. By Derby winner Camelot he has yet to race on turf having his only other start at Newcastle last December but that did not stop Notable Speech in the 2,000 Guineas. Has a young trainer going places but not sure the winners’ enclosure after the Derby at Epsom is the next stop on his itinerary.Voyage (Jockey: Pat Dobbs; Trainer: Richard Hannon; Mrs J Wood) 25/1

Cost Julie Woods relative peanuts (£40k) and never ran at two. The vast majority of Derby winners at least get out as a juvenile but Morston (1973) and Commander-in-Chief (1993) managed without. Of course as soon as his sire Golden Horn went off to be a jump stallion, it was sod’s law he’d start having some decent flat horses and this is one of them. Very impressive in a Newbury novice in April when he looked like he knew what he was doing but might be short on experience. Interesting and unexposed. There have been worse 33-1 shots and trainer second with Mojo Star.Updated June 1

Look beyond City of Troy for the winner of a wide-open race All the talk before the Betfred Derby has been about City of Troy, last year’s champion two-year-old, on a retrieval mission of some magnitude after a worse-than-dismal effort in the 2,000 Guineas but victory on Saturday can go to a colt so under the radar that he has barely featured in any Derby conversation.

It is generally acknowledged that the 245th running of the colts’ classic is one of the most open in recent memory and, as such, it is ripe for an upset. Indeed even if City of Troy, the uneasy but likely favourite, were to win, many would still be surprised.

If Aidan O’Brien can give us all a deja-vu of Auguste Rodin, who got up off the proverbial mat in the Guineas to win at Epsom 12 months ago, then he is beyond genius. City of Troy may have been a decent sized, brilliantly accomplished two-year-old with a juvenile rating only bettered this century by Frankel, but he did not appear to have grown over the winter, others had overtaken him in the all-round good-looks department and, to be honest, he looked a bit small.

There is a certain expectation and excitement when the previous year’s champion juvenile starts out on his Classic season at three but when looks were combined with performance it was a bit like getting a lump of coal in your Christmas stocking when you were expecting diamonds..

Auguste Rodin was a different kettle of fish in that he looked the part. Only O’Brien could possibly turn this one around and, of the Ballydoyle trio, I prefer his more workmanlike, less flash stablemate Los Angeles who is one of only two unbeaten colts in the race, the other being Richard Hannon’s maiden winner Voyage for whom it is a big ask.

The other trials came and went and were we much clearer about the likely result on the Downs? Of course, until about 4.40pm on Saturday, we can only have a vague idea of which trial we think was the most relevant particularly as the most obviously smart trial winner, Economics, sits this out back home in Newmarket.

If Group One Classic form is the best there is then Roger Teal, who used to watch the race over the rail two furlongs after the start when he was an Epsom stablelad, has an outstanding chance with French Guineas runner-up Dancing Gemini. He has gears aplenty and, though he has never run over further than a mile, he is bred to stay a mile and a half and has the potential to give Irish rising star of the riding ranks, Dylan Browne McMonagle, a dream first ride at Epsom.

It is not necessarily a bad thing that people are wondering if there is too much speed for the speed/stamina equation because a Derby winner should have it in abundance. His owner-breeder David Fish is no stranger to Derby success: as a member of the Royal Ascot Racing Club he owned a tail-hair of 2005 winner Motivator, still the only syndicate-owned winner of the sport’s blue riband.

Ancient Wisdom was six lengths back in second in the Dante and, even though he had a good blow that day, Charlie Appleby will have to have turned him round in 16 days, not impossible but not easy either. Technically, until his two stablemates fell by the wayside, he would have been Godolphin’s third string (but so was Adayar, the 2021 winner). Now he is their only runner.

Ambiente Friendly gives James Fashawe and weighing room veteran Rab Havlin, 50, an outstanding chance if you take his last start, the Lingfield trial, in isolation. He came clear and won in a good time. The third, who he beat nearly eight lengths, has since come out and won at Goodwood so the form of that race is stacking up. He gets the trip and, after 40 years in racing, can cap it all for eccentric 91-year-old owner Bill Gredley.

Ralph Beckett’s Macduff is an interesting candidate. He was second in the Sandown trial, the horse who beat him, Arabian Crown, met with a set-back so he does not have to beat him and he apparently does not do much at home but he should come on for the step up in trip.

However Lambourn trainer Owen Burrows, who was with Sir Michael Stoute when he had Workforce, decided to skip all the trials with Deira Mile, a decent two-year-old who finished in front of Dancing Gemini in the Futurity last year, to win his maiden at Windsor by four lengths in April and he can win this year’s Derby.

That might have been an ordinary race but the revelation came with this colt when he was one of four horses to go to Epsom for a canter round the course last week and he looked the pick of them. He was, said jockey Jim Crowley, a different horse from Windsor. In the world in which we now live, the most potent weapons are those that evade the radar.

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