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Horse-by-horse guide to the Derby

THIS week's Betting Book looks at the 12 runners in the Epsom Derby and we assess the chances of the runners and their prices, with seven Irish horses due to go post.

Battle Of Marengo

(Aidan O'Brien/Joseph O'Brien) 4/1

Has always been touted as a real Derby contender from Ballydoyle Towers and warmed up for this assignment by winning the Derrinstown Derby Trial which Aidan O'Brien has won with some notable horses in the past. Could be the one to take advantage of any chink in Dawn Approach's armour.


(Andres Wohler/Jamie Spencer) 10/1

Recently purchased by the powerful Sheikh Fahad-headed Qatar Racing, and has done little wrong in his native land. Will that be good enough? It shouldn't be.

Dawn Approach

(Jim Bolger/Kevin Manning) 10/11

The unbeaten 2,000 Guineas ticks all the boxes until you get to his dam's page which suggests he should struggle to get the 1m4f trip. Has been described as a freak of a horse though and connections are confident. Worthy favourite.

Festive Cheer

(Aidan O'Brien/Seamie Heffernan) 40/1

Won an above average maiden at Dundalk last season but would have had to win impressively in French Group Two last time to be really considered here and he finished second. Likely pacesetter.

Flying The Flag

(Aidan O'Brien/Colm O'Donoghue) 66/1

Another likely pacesetter who made no impression last week in the Irish 2,000 Guineas.

Galileo Rock

(David Wachman/Wayne Lordan) 33/1

Was third in the Sandown Classic Trial behind Sugar Boy, the form of that race hasn't been too bad and showed the signs of wanting further. Outsider who could run into a place at big odds.


(Elaine Burke/William Buick) 16/1

Dante winner who finished behind Galileo Rock in the Sandown trial, yet is almost half his price. Is a progressive colt but he is unlikely to prove good enough to topple the big players tomorrow.


(Aidan O'Brien/Richard Hughes) 14/1

A real good spare for Richard Hughes who certainly ran with promise in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket considering it was just his second start. Expect more improvement from that.


(James Tate/Neil Callan) 100/1

Won a Brighton maiden last year, ran well in listed race afterwards and won an extremely moderate Derby trial at Epsom. Would be a massive shock.

Ocean Applause

(John Ryan/Daragh O'Donohoe) 500/1

A maiden who has no chance.


(Andre Fabre/Pierre-Charles Boudot) 15/2

Impressive sort who comes from France on the back of a hat-trick and has won over 1m3f on very soft ground so the trip shouldn't be an issue. Very good trainer who is not coming over for the Epsom air and warrants plenty of respect.

Ruler Of The World

(Aidan O'Brien/Ryan Moore) 7/1

Two runs and two wins, including the Chester Vase, which makes him the only horse to have won over 1m4f in the field. Was impressive on that occasion in the way he put the race to bed and is a live contender from a powerful outfit.