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Derby market looks spot-on

Frank Monkhouse | 3 June 2017

Cliffs Of Moher deserves favourite tag

It’s the first Saturday in June, and that can mean only one thing to followers of the British horse racing scene – Investec Derby day at Epsom. Due off at 4.30pm, no less than 19 runners are expected to battle for the crown won by Harzand 12 months ago.

This will be the 238th running of the famous race, with the ITV cameras bringing us all the build-up and racing live. Fancy a bet on the action? You’re in great company. Have your say on each of the seven races on the card, including the star attraction. Make your opinions count.

We look at the Derby betting, and give our popular race-by-race selections, carefully picked out to offer followers a lively interest throughout the day. Choose your best and build a big price multiple.

Traders sitting on the fence

Our traders could be accused of sitting on the fence in the big race of the day – but that’s great news for punters. At the time of going to publish, Cliffs Of Moher and Cracksman dispute favouritism, with the pair chalked up at 4/1 in the early betting. That’s not changed much since the antepost market, and with many punters still scratching their heads, waiting for any slight hints or tips, we really don’t expect the current odds to alter too much. If there is a gamble going down, they’re certainly going to leave it late.

In terms of picking a winner of the race, I have to side with the odds compilers, and throw our weight behind Cliffs Of Moher. The eye-catching three-year-old colt, a product of the great Galileo, has certainly lived up to the breeding in the early stages of his career, and travels to Surrey with a record reading two wins from three starts.

Cliffs Of Moher dominant last time

Following an uninspiring introduction to life at Cork, finishing down in fifth, the pick got his head in front at the second time of asking, landing a maiden at Leopardstown last autumn. That was followed with a personal best at Chester in his most recent go, winning the Dee Stakes last month, beating Bay Of Poets by 1 ½ lengths, after going off an odds-on shot. There was more than the bare stats suggest however, a feeling at the finish that he kept plenty in reserve, knowing the job was done.

Cliffs Of Moher goes for Aidan O’Brien and Ryan Moore, a team that’s sure to catch the attention of casual punters, and that’s even without seeing that dominant win last time. O’Brien arrives with plenty of recent form onside, and although this looks to be one of the most competitive renewals of this race for a long time, Coral’s 4/1 on Cliffs Of Moher merits an interest.

Epsom selections

2.00 – Desert Skyline

2.35 – Laugh Aloud

3.10 – Sovereign Debt

3.45 – Desert Law

4.30 – Cliffs Of Moher

5.15 – Shraaoh

5.50 – Naggers

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