Derby Festival

EPSOM, UNITED KINGDOM: A woman enjoys the sunshine in the Prince's Lawn Pavilion at the Epsom Downs Derby on Ladies Day, 03 June, 2005. It is the first of two days of the Derby Festival, the richest two-day meeting in Europe. The AFP PHOTO / JOHN D MCHUGHThe Epsom Derby is the highlight of the second day of the annual Derby Festival. Unlike several other major national hunt and flat racing meetings, the Derby Festival does not extend over several days, and was instead planned around the two Classics run at the Epsom Downs racecourse on consecutive days each June.

Ladies Day

The Derby Festival has taken the lead from the Royal Ascot in setting up a racing day to provide racegoers from London and the midlands the opportunity to enjoy all the pageantry and style of a top international racing event. Along with the Epsom Oaks, high fashion is the order of the day and racegoers in the premium enclosures are expected to attend the event in their finest couture.

A major highlight of Ladies Day is the Coronation Cup, a prestigious Group 1 race first run in 1902 to mark the coronation of King Edward VII. The combination of the Group 1 Coronation Cup and the Epsom Oaks on ladies day makes this day of racing one of the undoubted highlights of the British flat racing calendar.

Along with these prestigious races, Ladies day features five smaller Class 1 and Class 2 races, including a number of handicap races and sprints that add variety to the day’s racing and provide racegoers with the exciting spectacle of horses taking advantage of the unusually fast Epsom Downs sprint course.

Derby Day

The Epsom Derby is the only Group 1 race run on Derby day. Derby day usually falls on a Friday or Saturday and attracts the biggest crowds of the year to Epsom Downs racecourse. The second day of racing at the Derby Festival is a favourite amongst punters who are able to advantage of the massive betting markets as well as the six other races run on Derby Day which feature three more sprint highlights, including the Woodcote Stakes, Dash Stakes and Sprint Stakes.

Derby Festival Betting

With the Derby Festival featuring 14 intriguing races and some of the top names in flat racing, there are numerous excellent betting opportunities available to punters. William Hill offers a full array of Derby Festival betting options that will allow you to make the most out of the Festival without having to jostle with the crowds on race day. Simply register an account at William Hill and make use of the excellent Derby festival betting options on offer.