For the first time in its history the world’s most famous Flat race, the Investec Derby at Epsom, will be staged behind closed doors due to the current Covid-19 pandemic restrictions.
The event will be equally unprecedented in its format, taking place on just one single day, Saturday 4th July 2020. The day will consist of seven races including the historic fillies’ Classic the Group 1 Investec Oaks, and the feature race the Group 1 Investec Derby.
General Manager of Epsom Downs Racecourse, Simon Durrant said:
“We are delighted that the Investec Derby can go ahead at its unique home course. Indeed, this will be the first time both the Oaks and Derby races take place on the same day, with both set to feature highly competitive fields.
The Investec Derby, seen as a supreme challenge for three-year-olds over the unique undulating Epsom Downs track, has a hugely illustrious roll of honour, which includes Bay Middleton, Ormonde, Isinglass, Hyperion and Bahram, while the last 50 years alone have seen such luminaries as Sea-Bird, Nijinsky, Mill Reef, Shergar, Nashwan, Generous, Lammtarra, Galileo, High Chaparral, New Approach, Sea The Stars and Golden Horn.
Such names contribute to the Derby’s rich history, partly through their outstanding performances at Epsom but also, for some, through their legacy as top stallions.
Galileo, European champion sire in 2008 thanks mainly to his Investec Derby winner New Approach and Coronation Cup victor Soldier Of Fortune and again from 2010 to 2019 inclusive demonstrated his prowess over the course as recently as 2001. Galileo has since sired a joint-record four winners of the Investec Derby, most recently Anthony Van Dyck last year.
For the sixth year, commemorative Investec Derby caps will be presented to jockeys who are having their debut ride in the Classic.
The caps were unveiled in 2015, with the first ever Investec Derby cap being specially presented to nine-time Derby-winning jockey Lester Piggott.
Irish jockey Chris Hayes made his investec Derby debut last year and finished second on Madhmoon for trainer Kevin Prendergast.
A number of jockeys will have their first ride in the Investec Derby on Saturday, including this season’s All-Weather champion Ben Curtis, multiple Group 1-winning rider Martin Harley, plus rising stars David Egan and Tom Marquand.