Who should I bet on at the 2021 Epsom Derby?

The Epsom Derby (4.30) is the biggest Flat horse race in the UK, if not the world. However, sometimes if you are not a big follower of racing picking a winner can be a little tricky.

Planet Sport aims to cut through all the waffle and give you a whistle stop run through of where you should place your punt.

If you want more detail on our fancies check out Planet Sport tipster Tom Reed's selections here.

Or if you want to see some of the horses in the warm-up trials have a quick look at our Road to Epsom feature.

Hopefully we can steer you in the right direction.

(All odds from Paddy Power, correct as of Friday June 4)

1. ADAYAR (40/1)

Form: 41-22

Trainer: C Appleby

Jockey: A Kirby

Ultimately no match for Third Realm when a hot favourite for the Lingfield Derby Trial. Ran creditably in defeat, but probably not sharp enough for the test Epsom presents. Place claims at best.

Adayar rating out of ten - 5


Form: 315-11

Trainer: A P O'Brien

Jockey: R L Moore

Has won the two biggest trials in Ireland, following up victory in the Ballysax Stakes with a scintillating display in the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial. Appears to possess the right blend of speed and stamina, and undoubtedly the one to beat.

Bolshoi Ballet rating - 9

3. GEAR UP (40/1)

Form: 1141-5

Trainer: M Johnston

Jockey: B A Curtis

Was considered a legitimate Derby contender by his trainer after rounding off his two-year-old campaign with victory in a 10-furlong Group One in France. However, he came up short in the Dante on his return and needs to raise his game significantly to get involved.

Gear Up rating - 5


Form: 1-11

Trainer: C Appleby

Jockey: W Buick

Has done nothing wrong so far, winning each of his three starts. Completed his hat-trick with a battling display in the Dante at York and remains open to improvement. Cannot be ruled out.

Hurricane Lane Rating - 9

5. JOHN LEEPER (7/1)

Form: 4-11

Trainer: E A L Dunlop

Jockey: L Dettori

Bred to be a superstar, being a son of Frankel and the yard's brilliant mare Snow Fairy, who won the Oaks at Epsom in 2010. Impressive on his penultimate start at Newcastle, John Leeper successfully stepped up to Listed class at Newmarket. Respected under Frankie Dettori.

John Leeper rating - 7

6. MAC SWINEY (15/2)

Form: 9181-41

Trainer: J S Bolger

Jockey: K J Manning

Group One-winning two-year-old, who put in an underwhelming performance behind Bolshoi Ballet on his return but then re-stated his case and well-being when touching off stablemate Poetic Flare in a thrilling Irish 2,000 Guineas. Son of a Derby winner in New Approach, and big claims if handling this faster ground.

Mac Swiney rating - 8


Form: 73-111

Trainer: W J Haggas

Jockey: Jim Crowley

Made it three from three for the season with a facile Listed success at Newmarket in early May. That form is some way short of what will be required on Saturday, but he is clearly a talented colt on an upward curve.

Mohaafeth rating - 7

8. MOJO STAR (100/1)

Form: 2-2

Trainer: R Hannon

Jockey: David Egan

Twice raced maiden who should get off the mark before too long, but it will be a huge shock if it is this weekend.

Mojo Star rating - 3

9. ONE RULER (25/1)

Form: 21312-6

Trainer: C Appleby

Jockey: James Doyle

Won a Group Three at two before pushing Mac Swiney close in the Group One Vertem Futurity Trophy. Was not disgraced in finishing sixth in the 2000 Guineas and looks to be crying out for a step up in trip. Could hit the frame at rewarding odds.

One ruler rating - 8


Form: 2-16

Trainer: Joseph P O'Brien

Jockey: D P McDonogh

Looked the part when winning his maiden at Leopardstown, but was well beaten by Bolshoi Ballet in the Derrinstown. Up against it.

Southern Lights rating - 4

11. THIRD REALM (12/1)

Form: 5-11

Trainer: Roger Varian

Jockey: Andrea Atzeni

Won the Lingfield Derby Trial with some authority and appears versatile ground-wise. Straightforward colt who looks sure to give his running. It is just a question of whether he is good enough or not.

Third Realm rating - 7

12. YOUTH SPIRIT (33/1)

Form: 413-41

Trainer: A M Balding

Jockey: Tom Marquand

A clear-cut success in the Chester Vase proved his stamina - and with just five runs under his belt, he remains open to improvement. Could run into a place but might lack the class to come home in front.

Youth Spirit rating - 5


Make no mistake, Bolshoi Ballet is well poised to take the race, being prepped by the eight time Derby winning trainer Aidan O'Brien.

Yet, O'Brien is without his usual sextet of Derby entrants and down to just Bolshoi Ballet after High Definition was pulled at the last minute. That leaves Balloydoyle exposed and brings Mac Swiney right into the mix.

That speed, doggedness and solid breeding should mean that Mac Swiney is well worth an each-way bet, particularly if he touches 8/1 or more in the market.

One Ruler is also worth an each way shot. He won a Group Three as a two-year-old, and pushed Mac Swiney all the way in a Group One and ran perfectly respectably when sixth in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket. A step up in trip should see him raise his game.

It might not be a romp for Mac Swiney but there is a good chance to lose yourself in your winnings at around 4.30pm on Saturday.

Planet Sport's final three: 1. Mac Swiney 2. One Ruler 3. Bolshoi Ballet