• Horse Racing

Derby delight for Camelot at Epsom

ESPN staff
June 2, 2012

Long-time favourite Camelot lived up to expectations as he took the Derby Day honours at Epsom, winning the Investec Derby in impressive fashion to maintain his unbeaten record.

Staying patient towards the back of the field for the majority of the mile-and-a-half journey, the son of Montjeu left himself plenty to do as they kicked for home, but the turn of pace was breathtaking as he judged his assault to perfection.

Saturday's crowd witnessed the smallest Investec Derby field for years with nine going to post. Camelot appeared to have intimidated many of his rivals into skipping the event, but did have stable mate Astrology for company.

Trained by Aidan O'Brien and ridden by son Joseph O'Brien, the 8/13 favourite was held up as Astrology was allowed to set the pace, some distance clear of Camelot who settled one from the back.

As they turned for home it looked like Astrology, an impressive winner at the Chester May meeting, might cause the upset. But Camelot had other ideas as he thundered towards the line, finishing five lengths ahead of Main Sequence (9/1), with Astrology (13/2) in third.

Victory for the O'Brien partnership represented the first ever Investec Derby triumph by a father-and-son combination. Added to their recent win in the 2000 Guineas, they have now completed the Classic double.

Young jockey O'Brien commented: "I was a bit worried as he didn't come down the hill at all. He didn't handle the track that well, so he did well to win.

"He's a very special horse and I'm just very fortunate to be on his back. I owe a big thanks to the owners and everyone in the yard."

Trainer and jockey had earlier won the Diamond Jubilee Coronation Cup with St Nicholas Abbey.

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