Daryl Carter takes you through all today's action and has updates on the final Derby declarations to get the heart pumping.
"In the last ten years, the average field size has been 13.7 runners, and in each race on average, O'Brien has had 33% of the field."
Punters are set for a much quieter day today but still some good action to seek out some profit.
O'Brien bombshell as Ballet set for sole role in Derby
News broke yesterday that Aidan O'Brien is to have just the one runner in this weekends Cazoo Epsom Derby, with ante-post favourite Bolshoi Ballet the sole representative in today's confirmed final declarations.
Why on earth is that big news?
O'Brien has had multiple entries in the race down the years, including pacemakers, and has held a significant tactical advantage - whether anyone cares to admit it or not, he has!
This is the first time he has had a sole runner in the race since 2004 with Meath a 16/1 chance that finished 14th of 14 - although he did win with superstar and sole runner Galileo in 2001.
In fact, the trainer has accounted for 33% of the overall runners in the last ten years, with 45 of the 137 participants.
Aidan O'Brien has saddled the winner of this contest in six of the last ten years and has had an average of 4.5 runners a race - allowing him to dictate races (to a degree).
In the last ten years, the average field size has been 13.7 runners, and in each race on average, O'Brien has had 33% of the field.
A tactical genius, yes! But it has been hard work for the bettor!
This is good news for punters as there will be no second-guessing and worrying whether the pacemaker will accidently "make all" and scupper bets, or finding your selection hemmed in on the rail in a tactical game.
A proper Derby, a proper betting heat!
One way market traffic
Since O'Brien's confirmation of Bolshoi Ballet is to be his sole runner, there has been a steady stream of money for the favourite who is now 2.265/4 on the Exchange.
The favourite has taken another £50,500 since Wednesday's Daily Racing News column totalling £213,000 - more than a third of the total market spend.
High Definition has been confirmed a no go in the Derby and has left punters £100,000 out of pocket and Ballet well clear in the market.
The final field of 12 is as follows: Bolshoi Ballet, Adayar, Gear Up, Hurricane Lane, John Leeper, Mac Swiney, Mohaafeth, Mojo Star, One Ruler, Southern Lights, Third Realm, Youth Spirit.
The stalls draw will be at 11am.
Timeform hoping for the luck of the Irish at Leopardstown
Timeform continues to fire in the winners and, this time, head across the Irish Sea.
Race of the day
Only a five runner contest, but the 18:00 Ministry Of Sound Classical 21st August Handicap at Chelmsford looks a belter of a race, so it would be rude not to have a look.
Araifjan had opened up the market leader for this, and the four-year-old has every right to be favourite after claiming three wins from 12 starts on the all-weather, including here over course and distance.
His form figures at Chelmsford now read 1, 2 with the latter a late lunge over 7f catching him out. He is weighted to go well here, but with that comes a step up in class, and he may lack the improvement of some of his rivals.
Power Over Me has been a revelation for this yard, scoring in five of his seven all-weather starts, including over course and distance on stable debut.
He is now 32lbs higher than when he debuted for his trainer but doesn't look done improving on review of his Wolverhampton win in March. That form has worked out well, and where the ceiling lies, nobody knows.
Ivatheengine looked an exciting prospect in 2019 but has clearly been tough to train with significant breaks between his racing. He did, however, catch the eye over an inadequate trip of 5f at Newbury in a very hot handicap where the winner will likely be heading into Group 1 company.
The return to six furlongs is a big positive on that evidence and the form book. He is 3/3 at this trip, and his talented claimer takes off 5lbs, meaning he is 7lbs lower than his return effort. He indeed has more to offer and remains a very promising horse.
Rhys Williams has a couple of big priced selections for Thursday
Our daily tipster Rhys Williams has three selections including a 66/1 shot at Uttoxeter.
Stat of the day
Backing the sole last time out winner in a field returns an overall loss of 13% - horses that fit that bill at the top of the market today are - 20:15 Thirsk Time Has Wings. 18:00 Chelmsford Power Over Me, 19:00 Chelmsford Aleatoric.
Money Talk continues to bring you the market movers with an added slice of information to accompany. Who are the Betfair customers backing today?
13:00 Hamilton - Hi Meh Darling 20/1 into 9/1 - Iain Jardine newcommer - the trainer is 0/50 with his two-year-olds first time up in the last ten years.
14:45 Hamilton - Call Me Ginger 10/1 into 4/1 - Ran a good race here eight days ago steps up in grade.
20:15 Thirsk - Elegant Ellen 10/1 into 11/2 - handicap debutant who has shown promise in three starts.
15:40 Leopardstown -Juyush 14.013/1 into 8.07/1 - has taken over half market money on the Exchange at the time of writing.
Dudman's Betfair boosted 12/1 Double
Al Dudman has found a tasty double at Leopardstown and his selections are boosted everyday on the Betfair Sportsbook, and today's is 12/1!
News broke yesterday that poor old Adam Kirby has been jocked off John Leeper in the Epsom Derby in favour of Frankie Dettori.
Frankie strikes again! He did the same (probably at no fault of his own) last year to Tom Marquand on English King - and made a hash of it.
It's ultimately the owners choice, but it's sad to see. Adam was absolutely over the moon to have an Oaks ride and a Derby ride for the first time in the same year - thankfully good old Godolphin have picked him up for the ride on Adayar!
Whatever you do, if you fancy Leeper, don't back him each way, Frankie is done with placing - evident by his ride on Sevenal yesterday and the umpteen other examples I could provide.
Until tomorrow, be lucky.
Follow Daryl Carter on Twitter @DarylCarter7
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