The recent roll of honour from both the Derby and the Oaks at Epsom, would suggest that following a short-priced NAP of the day, isn’t always the way to go.
Last year’s winner of the Derby, Masar, returned at 16/1, while the previous year went to 40/1 shot, Wings of Eagles. It’s a similar story for the Oaks, where Qualify scored at 50/1 into 2015 and Talent at 20/1 in 2013.
The route of following the ‘red-hot’ Derby or Oaks favourite isn’t always a profitable one. With that in mind, Luke Parkinson has taken a look at some outsiders who could secure an each-way Derby/Oaks double.
William Haggas’ horses are often underrated going into big races and that may well be the case with one of his runners in the Oaks.
Maqsad leads his charge in the hands of Jim Crowley, but there is plenty to like about Frankellina and she looks a bit overpriced for me.
She missed the break by a fair way on her latest start in the Musidora Stakes at York, but battled back well to fly up the stand side and dead heat with Entitle for second, just a neck behind Nausha.
Of course, her price is one that represents some risk and reward, as she could fluff her lines at the start again. However, if she’d have broken better at York, she would have arguably won the Musidora and would head to the Oaks with a much shorter price.
There’s a big ‘IF’ in there, but if she breaks well, then the famous silks of Anthony Oppenheimer could be carried to Epsom success again.
As many as eight runners could go to post in the Derby for trainer Aiden O’Brien, and while all the focus from his string will be on the convincing Chester winner Sir Dragonet, punters may well be forgetting about Japan.
Now a double-figure price, Japan was the ante-post Derby favourite earlier this year and despite only seeing him once this season, he has apparently shown enough for the bookies to lessen his chances.
That run came in the Dante at York, where he was a big drifter in the betting, before eventually finishing 4th behind Telecaster, Too Darn Hot and Surfman.
His drift would suggest that not everything was 100% that day and the fact he ran on towards the end is a positive for stepping up to the 1m4f test of the Derby.
The ground may also have been a bit on the quick side for him at York (good to firm), with his victories as a two-year-old coming on good and heavy.
With rain around ahead of the Derby, the current good going may even ease, and that would make him even better value if he remains at double figures in the Epsom Derby Festival betting.