A total of 139 horses (up from 96 at the same stage in 2019) remain engaged for the 2020 Investec Derby on Saturday, June 6, following the first scratchings deadline. This year will be the 241st running of the premier Classic and carries a total prize fund of at least £1.5 million, making it the most valuable race run in Britain.
Those remaining in the race were all entered as yearlings in December 2018, with a second £9,000 entry stage remains on Tuesday, 7 April and an £85,000 supplementary entry stage on Monday, 1 June, allowing additional entries to be made.
Last year, Aidan O’Brien registered a record-equalling seventh Investec Derby victory, courtesy of Anthony Van Dyck, and Ireland’s multiple champion trainer has the leading number of 47 entries going forward as he chases an unprecedented eighth success in the 12-furlong showpiece.
O’Brien’s formidable team includes Innisfree, Year Of The Tiger and Mogul, who filled the places in that order behind Kameko (Andrew Balding) in the rearranged G1 Vertem Futurity Trophy at Newcastle in November. The G1 National Stakes runner-up Armory and G2 Royal Lodge Stakes victor Royal Dornoch are also engaged for the Ballydoyle trainer.
The total number of entries trained by the O’Brien family stands at 55, with four entries each for Aidan O’Brien’s sons Joseph, who rode Camelot (2012) and Australia (2014) to Investec Derby success, and Donnacha, who landed the 2018 Investec Oaks on Forever Together and commenced his training career at the end of 2019.
Godolphin’s Pinatubo (Charlie Appleby) is the 7/1 favourite with Unibet, official betting partner of the Investec Derby Festival, although he does not currently hold an entry.
The Shamardal colt carried all before him in five starts last season, with his winning streak headlined by a memorable nine-length victory in the G1 National Stakes at the Curragh in September – a performance that earned him the highest two-year-old rating for 25 years.
Britain’s champion trainer John Gosden, successful with Benny The Dip (1997) and Golden Horn (2015), has the hugely exciting Waldkonig among his 16 contenders. A half-brother to last year’s G1 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner Waldgeist, the Kingman colt could not have been more impressive on debut at Wolverhampton in December. Gosden’s team also features Newmarket maiden winner Tuscan Gaze and Darain, who is an unraced full brother to multiple G1 scorer Too Darn Hot.
Sir Michael Stoute enjoyed the most recent of his five Investec Derby triumphs in 2010 with Workforce. The Newmarket handler’s four entries are led by unbeaten pair Highest Ground and Satono Japan, who made eye-catching debuts at Leicester and Kempton Park respectively at the backend of last season.
Hughie Morrison has two promising colts in Starcat and Kipps. The former won a well-contested novice race first time out at Kempton Park on 11 December, while the latter was off the mark at the second attempt in a similar contest over 10 furlongs at Lingfield Park on 28 December. Morrison said: “Starcat and Kipps are two nice horses. Starcat won nicely on his debut at Kempton. I am not sure he is a horse who will stay a mile and a half, but hopefully he has a nice future ahead of him. Kipps is a lovely horse and I was pleased with his victory last time out. He could potentially head for the Blue Riband Trial at Epsom in April as a starting point. He looks exciting as he should enjoy that trip".
The three fillies going forward include Do You Love Me (Karl Burke), who is an unraced full sister to 2018 Investec Oaks heroine Forever Together and cost €3.2 million at the Goffs Orby Sale in 2018.
Investec Derby – Unibet prices (italics not currently entered):
12/1 Mogul, Kameko
16/1 Military March
20/1 Innisfree, Palace Pier
25/1 Armory, Year Of The Tiger
33/1 Al Suhail, Brentford Hope, Convict, Enemy, Highest Ground, Iberia, Lope Y Fernandez, Max Vega, Persia, Royal Dornoch, Tuscan Gaze
40/1 Cape Palace, Choctaw Ridge, Darain, Gauntlet, Khaloosy, Mythical, Silver Fox, Starcat, Thunderous
50/1 Amhran Na Bhfiann, Arrow of Gold, Byzantine Empire, Cabot Hills, Caldwell, Celtic High King, Chachnak, Ciel d'Afrique, Copper Point, Do You Love Me, Greek Gladiator, Harakann, Keats, Khabaab, Kipling, Monarch Of Egypt, Napa Valley, Nobel Prize, Numen, Order Of Australia, Palm Beach, Ramesses The Great, Royal Lytham, Santiago, Satono Japan, Star Of Juniper, Taqareer, Vatican City
66/1 Al Aasy, Almighwar, Arthurs Kingdom, Blow Your Horn, Colonize, Coventry, Cozone, Dawn Rising, Daylight Come, Dune of Pilat, Emperor Of The Sun, English King, First Receiver, Fiscal Rules, Grand Bazaar, Grand Rock, Hukum, King Fairy, Law Of One, Lost Eden, My Oberon, Nasraawy, Noonday Gun, Robert Walpole, Russian Emperor, San Pedro, Sherpa, Sky Commander, Thames River, The Boatman, Tiger Moth, To Nathaniel, Toronto, Ursa Minor, Yankee Stadium
80/1 Desert Emperor, Mark of Gold
100/1 Al Zaraqaan, Berkshire Rocco, Bodyline, Cormorant, Count of Amazonia, Dawn Patrol, Delphi, Dream With Me, Father of Jazz, Flying Scotsman, HMS President, Hootton, Jacksonian, Khalifa Sat, Kipps, Luncies, Maori Knight, Matthew Flinders, Memorabilis, Monument Valley, Mr G, Mr Tambourine Man, Papa Power, Postileo, Retrospect, Serpentine, Shoshone Warrior, Solar Screen, Sunchart, Tammani, Taramansour, Thank You Power
The Seventh Day, Thumur, Tyson Fury, Valyrian Steel, Victory Road, Vintage Rascal, War Cross
125/1 Emaraty Hero
150/1 Nova Roma, Paradiso, Port Lockroy, Sheer Bravado, Stepney Causeway, Verdon Gorge
200/1 Incendiere, Louve, Moomba, Nevendon, Pharoah King
The full press release can be found here