TOP THREE DERBY MOMENTS: After looking back on the Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase, Stayers Hurdle and Gold Cup from the Cheltenham Festival – it’s time to look at the biggest races on the flat!
The Derby is always the highlight of the British summer and while we have not seen a star three year old colt for a while now, we have some excellent memories when you look back through the years.
We have picked our top three:
3️⃣ 2011. Winner: Pour Moi
The drama. The celebration. The photo. This Derby had it all, obviously Mickael Barzalona was a young man enjoying the moment; but he nearly lost it with his celebration! It’s fair to say that this wasn’t the most high quality Derby when you look at the field, however you can say much the same about the last few years at Epsom too.
It was a shame we never got to see Pour Moi on the track again after this, but we will never forget the celebration. The photo finish with Barzalona standing up in the saddle is amazing! We’ll probably never see the likes of it again in such a close finish.
2️⃣ 2015. Winner Golden Horn
Would it be fair to say that Golden Horn was the last top quality winner of the Derby? Quite possibly the last three year old Derby winning star. He went on to win the Eclipse, Irish Champion Stakes and Arc after this. Jack Hobbs won the Irish Derby easily a couple of week after too. Golden Horn was ultra-impressive when winning the Arc too, even though most headlines read that Treve couldn’t do the three-in-a-row.
This was an excellent Derby and the way he put distance between himself and the field after where he was turning in was a sign of a great horse. He was possible struggling with the track from about two and a half furlongs out too. Luckily he had an experienced Frankie Dettori on his back and this was a great Derby.
1️⃣ 2009. Winner: Sea The Stars
Who could look back on recent Derby winners and not have Sea The Stars right up there. He was so special. Perhaps a little unlucky to come so close to Frankel and he took over as the horse the public loved on the flat. Sea The Stars had an immense career though. He won a major Group 1 every month from May to October in a season which is unlikely to be repeated. Unlikely Frankel, Sea The Stars was never a “wow horse” on the eye, he always just did enough to win and got the job done. But have no doubt, he was top class.
Ballydoyle threw the kitchen sink at him to beat him in this Derby. The trip was a worry heading into it, and he stepped back down to 1M2F after winning here until he took on the challenge again in the Arc in Longchamp. He won that day too to cap a wonderful career and he must go down as a Derby legend. Everything is pumped up these days, but Sea The Stars season was truly exceptional and we truly may never see the likes of it again.