|Class||Set Weights for three-year-olds.|
Ace High ($7)
The Victoria Derby is one of Australia's most iconic races. First run all the way back in 1855, the Derby has a long and proud history. The prize purse was recently increased to an impressive two million dollars, in a reflection of the status of the Derby during the spring carnival.
Derbies around the world are thought of as the most prestigious and historical races, and the same can be said in Australia. It is one of the oldest races that is still contested today in this wide brown land. In the 163 years since its inauguration, some of the all-time greats of the equine scene have triumphed, including Poseidon, Phar Lap, Tulloch and Dulcify.
The Victoria Derby is one of four Group Ones scheduled on the famous Derby Day, to which the race gives its name. Derby Day is the first event of the Flemington Carnival, which takes place on the Saturday before the first Tuesday in November.
The Derby is undoubtedly the highlight of all the Group Ones, as the star three-year-old colts have their first go at the mammoth 2,500 metre trip. Part of what makes the Derby such a fascinating betting race is that all the young horses are untried at the distance, meaning that there is a doubt over every starter of whether they can run out the mile and a half.
Consequently, the Derby has been a race for value, with only three favourites winning in the past eleven years. Indeed, the average winning price over the last decade is a juicy $20.
As the 2,500-metre start occurs just before the sharp turn out of the home straight, jockeys that have drawn wide face a tough task to find cover. Not getting posted three-deep is crucial, as every bit of energy will count in the final furlong.
In 2017, esteemed trainer David Payne saw his efforts rewarded when Ace High was first past the post.
His supreme staying ability came to the fore, distancing placegetters Sully and Astoria.