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The Price Is Right: There's plenty to like about Pyledriver's chances

Fri 3 Jul 2020

The Tote's Kevin O'Malley has three big-priced selections for the racing action at Epsom on Saturday, including in the Investec Oaks and Derby.

Investec Derby day has finally arrived and what an amazing Saturday ahead at Epsom for racing fans around the world to enjoy. Below we highlight three horses that could be over-priced on the day, including selections in the two Classic showpieces.

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3.00 Epsom: DATA PROTECTION

What we have here is a warm up for the Investec Oaks with an interesting ten-furlong handicap.

Heading the market is the progressive Desert Icon, who absolutely hosed up at Newmarket last time. Was he flattered by the winning distance? It’s tricky to tell at this stage but, either way, he’s been well found in the market.

Caradoc is a lovely horse but may just need the run.

With the top of the market not looking particularly strong, I’ll take a chance on William Muir’s DATA PROTECTION. This course specialist was one paced on his return to action at Haydock last time out, but he is worth forgiving here with a better effort likely under suitable conditions.

John Egan gets down to 8st 1lb to take the ride, which you’d imagine doesn’t happen all too often these days, and that has to be taken note of.

Data Protection won an Epsom handicap in 2018 by nine lengths and has posted several good efforts here since.

3.40 Epsom: QUEEN DAENERYS

This good-looking Frankel filly has a lot on her plate with the likes of Love and Frankly Darling lining up for an intriguing renewal of the Investec Oaks.

In addition, the form of her Newmarket comeback run has taken two strong hits with Run Wild and Trefoil both flopping badly since.

However, those two efforts are hardly her fault and could be purely coincidental. Queen Daenerys was having her first run after a wind operation there and you’d imagine there will be improvement to come on this second start, now over a longer trip.

Her A to B speed is very promising and perhaps this test can see her put up a valiant effort at rewarding odds.

4.55 Epsom: PYLEDRIVER

Several shrewd and well-known judges have tipped up David Simcock’s Mohican Heights and I can understand the logic. But if you’re backing that horse, you simply have to have a few quid on Pyledriver.

Another of William Muir’s string, this son of Harbour Watch is a little bit out of the norm in terms of his profile, but in regard to his recent track performances, there’s little doubt he is a proper middle-distance horse.

Mohican Heights was staying on nicely behind Pyledriver in the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot last time out. But Pyledriver was well on top at the line and, in hindsight, put up quite a domineering performance.

He handled Ascot really well, skipped around Kempton seamlessly before that and comes into the Derby on the back of two solid Group class runs. 1m4f appeared to improve him last time out and some cut in the ground shouldn’t be a problem either.

All things considered, it’s quite difficult to envisage him not running a highly respectable race under Martin Dwyer, who knows the horse inside out.

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