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VICTORIA DERBY: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

HISTORY:

* First run in 1855 when won by Rose Of May, the Victoria Derby is six years older than the Melbourne Cup and one of the oldest races in the world

NOTABLE WINNERS:

* Manfred (1925), Phar Lap (1929), Skipton (1941), Comic Court (1948), Delta (1949), Tulloch (1957), Sky High (1960), Tobin Bronze (1965), Dulcify (1978), Mahogany (1993) and Efficient (2006)

TALKING POINTS:

* James Scobie holds training record with eight winners

* Bart Cummings and the late TJ Smith share modern-day training honours with five winners

* Gai Waterhouse, daughter of TJ Smith, became first woman to prepare Victoria Derby winner when Nothin’ Leica Dane, part-owned by her father, won in 1995

* Legendary jockey Bobby Lewis holds record for most number of Victoria Derby wins with eight

* Tulloch the shortest-priced favourite at 1-10 when won in 1957

* Martini-Henri won the 1883 Victoria Derby at his first start and Melbourne Cup at his second

* Fire Oak (1990) became first maiden since Martini-Henri to win. Two years later Redding repeated the feat

THE DISTANCE: The 2500m is a query for every runner as the Victoria Derby offers the first chance for three-year-olds to be tested at the distance. However, many believe class is just as important as stamina in a Derby.

THE FAVOURITE: Hampton Court. The Sydney colt has hit his straps this spring and produced a stunning finish to win the Spring Champion Stakes. Part-owned by James Packer and radio king Alan Jones, the Derby will be his first start in Melbourne.

MAIDENS: The Chris Waller-trained Preferment is a $5 chance to become the first maiden in 22 years to claim the Victoria Derby. A slashing second in the Geelong Classic, Preferment will wear winkers for the first time at Flemington.

 
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