THE EPSOM DERBY
Contested on Epsom Downs since 1780, apart from 2 brief spells during the First and Second World Wars when it transferred to Newmarket and known as The New Derby Stakes, this site provides a comprehensive history of the Blue Riband of the Turf; every winner, runner, owner, trainer and jockey and, where available, video clips of the majority of races run since 1911. Discover why in relative terms, in winning the 1849 Derby, The Flying Dutchman won the most valuable Derby ever run. Decide how the bookmakers of the day could offer the prices they did and still make a profit; the over-round in 1783 was 97%, in 1839 it was just 101%, and in many other early races the bookmakers barely had the odds in their favour. The scources of information are wide and varied, including old newspapers of the day, exceptionally old racecards contributed by visitors to the site, Bailey's Racing Register, The Sporting Magazine and very old Racing Calendars. Invaluable reference works have been used to confirm details, notably the Derby Stakes 1780-2016 by Michael Church (ISBN 1910498920), The Derby Stakes; the Complete History 1780–2006 by Michael Church (ISBN 1905153368), The Derby Stakes 1780-1997 by Michael Church (ISBN 189874615X), Romance of The Derby' by Edward Moorhouse, 'The Derby Stakes' by Vincent Orchard, and 'The History of the Derby Stakes' by Roger Mortimer.
Every Classic winner has now been rated using times (the 1810 St Leger was one of the earliest occasions when a winner's time was provided), winning distances and strength of opposition. A very useful survey was carried out by the Sporting Times in May 1886 when 100 Jockey Club Members, owners, trainers, jockeys and tipsters were invited to list the top 10 racehorses. To see the results of that survey click here.
Every effort has been made to trace copyright holders of all scans in this section of the site. Some contributors have asked to be acknowledged for their contributions and their wish has been granted. If anyone thinks they own an image used then contact the site owner.
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