In Sydney on Saturday the headline race on a bumper nine event program is the 2014 Epsom Handicap, a detailed form guide and betting preview for which is detailed below.
There are 15 gallopers engaged in the field for this year’s $500,000 Group 1 The Star Epsom (1600m) that runs as Randwick Race 7 at 4:00pm.
In the latest Epsom Handicap betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au the top fancy is Chris Waller’s 2014 ATC Oaks winning mare Royal Descent ($4.40).
Now in her five-year-old season, Royal Descent is coming off three second place finishes at the Randwick track most recently finishing a length and a quarter off her dual Doncaster Mile winning stable mate Sacred Falls in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) on September 20.
The George Main Stakes has produced four of the past 10 Epsom Handicap winners, Royal Descent out to become the fifth on Saturday and the first mare since Secret Admirer (2011) to take out the mile classic.
She’s followed in the Epsom Handicap odds by three other single figure hopes with last year’s third placegetter Toydini ($6) getting the blinkers on here, the defending champion Boban ($7) with the rails run from gate one and early market mover Laser Hawk ($9) for Joe Pride who lost former favourite Rock Sturdy to injury on Wednesday.
That’s the story the bookies are writing, but what about the race’s history and form?
Having gone over the Epsom Handicap field and form guide, below are the must know facts on the showdown so you can back a winner online at Ladbrokes.com.au who are offering Best Tote or SP + 20% markets on the race this weekend!
2014 Epsom Handicap Form Facts & Betting Stats
- Last year’s Epsom Handicap winner was the Chris Waller-trained Boban who carried 53kg from barrier 10 (of 16) with Glyn Schofield in the saddle on the back of two earlier wins in Sydney including the Bill Ritchie Handicap a fortnight earlier
- This year #1 Boban ($7) is back but goes up to the 58kg top weight with Schofield retaining the ride in barrier one
- Waller is also represented in the race going for back-to-back Epsoms with race favourite #2 Royal Descent ($4.40), #6 He’s Your Man ($6) and #10 Lucky Chappy ($41)
- Favourites have a poor recent Epsom Handicap record however with just two of the past 10 saluting, the most recent of which was Fat Al (2012)
- The most successful Epsom Handicap winning trainer meanwhile is Gai Waterhouse with seven winners: Fat Al (2012), Rock Kingdom (2009), Theseo (2008), Desert War (2004-2005), Excellerator (2002) and Iron Horse (1997)
- This year Waterhouse shoots for another win with three chances: #12 Liberty’s Choice ($26), #13 Pheidon ($41) and #14 Woodbine ($26)
- Last year’s winning barrier (10) this year belongs to one of Waller’s hopes, #6 He’s Your Man to be ridden by ace Brazilian-bred, Hong Kong-based jockey Joao Moreira
- Barrier 10 has produced two Epsom Handicap winners since 1983
- The most successful Epsom Handicap barriers in that time with four wins each are seven and eight which on Saturday belong to #11 Jetset Lad ($81) and #3 Toydini ($6) respectively
- #6 He’s Your Man (Group 3 Kingston Town Stakes, 2000m, Rosehill, 13/09/2014) is also one of three last start winners in the race this year along with #8 Hooked (Group 3 Cameron Handicap, 1500m, Newcastle, 17/09/2014) and #14 Woodbine (Benchmark 85, 1350m, Rosehill, 27/09/2014)
- The best performed horse backing up from the Bill Ritchie Handicap this year meanwhile is #13 Pheidon ($41) who ran fourth to Manawanui
- The George Main Stakes is the key Epsom Handicap lead-up producing four winners in the last 10 years
- This year Epsom contenders coming via the George Main are Royal Descent (2nd), Laser Hawk (3rd) and Toydini (8th)
- The horses with the highest Win Rate of the field are #14 Woodbine (36%) and #5 Star Rolling (36%) followed by #1 Boban (35%) and #4 Laser Hawk (33%)
- The best Place Rate then belongs to #12 Liberty’s Choice (71%) followed by #2 Royal Descent (68%), #4 Laser Hawk (67%), #13 Pheidon (60%), #6 He’s Your Man (59%) and #14 Woodbine (55%)
- Over the distance (1600m) the horses with the best mile record are: #1 Boban (5-3-0-0), #2 Royal Descent (5-0-5-0) and #4 Laser Hawk (3-1-0-2)
- Those with the best Randwick track record are: #1 Boban (7-2-0-0), #2 Royal Descent (9-2-5-1), #14 Woodbine (3-1-1-0), #12 Liberty’s Choice (4-0-2-0) and #13 Pheidon (4-0-2-0)
- Previous winners over the Track & Distance are then: #1 Boban (1-1-0-0) and #3 Toydini (4-1-0-1)
- #2 Royal Descent (4-0-4-0) meanwhile has had four runs over the Randwick mile for four seconds including in the George Main Stakes last time out
Stay tuned to Races.com.au for our insider Epsom Handicap tips to be published shortly.
Already have your selections picked out and ready to go?
Then head to Ladbrokes.com.au and take advantage of their Best Tote or SP + 20% markets for the Epsom this year!