Millions will be watching when the 2017 renewal of the Investec Derby is held on Saturday June 3 and whether you are seeing the action on TV, via live stream and making your way to Epsom Downs, the race will be no less dramatic. A day at the races provides great entertainment and it can enhance your enjoyment when you’ve placed a bet but it can also help you appreciate what the horses and jockeys have to put themselves through.
As you can see from the video, the course at Epsom is far from flat. The Derby is a real test of a horse’s endurance and that’s why many owners and trainers are hesitant about entering unless they are certain that their runner has the stamina to cope with the distance and the alternating gradients of this track. From the Grandstand, spectators have a perfect view as the horses burst from the start and begin the Derby with a steep climb. At its apex, a sharp descent follows as the horses turn right and then left, looking for the best position as they head into the final straight.
The test is far from over as the pack heads into the final furlongs. Even at trackside, you can notice a very pronounced camber on this Epsom Downs track and it can lead to a lot of rolling as the leaders come in. Here, it pays to be tight on the inside where the camber is less pronounced but even in the final yards, the horses need to negotiate another rise ahead of the winner’s post. Watching any horse race, via any medium, provides great entertainment and drama but it can also help you to understand the event via a sportsman’s perspective. That’s certainly true at the Derby where, this Epsom Downs course offers more than just a test of stamina.