With the flat season making its return last weekend, punters are beginning to dip into the ante-post markets, especially in the British Classics: starting with the Derby.
At this stage of the season, there is plenty of value to be found in a certain few selections.
Here are three runners to consider for this season’s renewal of The Derby.
Uncle Bryn (25/1 – bet365)
Aiden O’Brien holds four of the first five runners in the betting, with John Gosden possessing the other in the form of exciting prospect Uncle Bryn.
Sired by the 2009 Derby winner Sea The Stars and a half-brother to Group 3 winner Boomer, the colt’s pedigree should suggest that he will be competing with the best.
His dam (Wall Of Sound) was also a triple winner on the flat over the middle distances, which creates further expectation on Gosden’s talent.
Uncle Bryn had won both of his starts so far, kicking up the sand on the all-weather courses over the winter.
He won comfortably on his debut at Kempton in September before storming home at Wolverhampton two months later, defying a 7lb penalty.
Gosden’s colt will likely make his debut on the turf in the Sandown Classic Trial or the Dante Stakes at York and is one to watch out for this season.
Royal Champion (33/1 – Various)
A highly-rated talent under the guidance of Roger Varian, Royal Champion could develop into a top-class performance this season.
The colt produced an impressive performance on his debut at Newmarket, seeing off odds-on favourite Toromona by a length.
The form from that contest has strengthened as Varian’s runner finished five lengths clear of third-place Noman, who went to win on his next start.
His pedigree is eye-catching to say the least, with the three-year-old being sired by four-time Group 1 winner Sharmardal and out of Dubawi’s half-sister Emirates Queen.
There is a lot of expectation on Royal Champion land a black-type victory this season, which could well be claimed on the famous Downs.
Wordsworth (50/1 – Betfair + Paddy Power)
Another Galileo colt from the Aidan O’Brien yard, Wordsworth has several connections that could gather some interest.
As well as being from the 12-time leading sire in Britain and Ireland, he is a full brother to Kew Gardens, who won the St. Leger and Grand Prix de Paris as a three-year-old.
That would suggest that the colt is bred for trips of 1m4f and further, meaning he could well be a serious contender for the Derby.
He was usurped by stablemate High Definition in the final strides (currently the 4/1 for the contest) on his sole start, but the three-year-old showed plenty of ability and can continue to develop this season.
At a current price of 50/1, he could well be huge value at this current stage.