Horse racing in May 2024: Guineas Festival & Kentucky Derby headline stellar month

Horse racing fans will be in their element this month, with the calendar packed with a host of top-class meetings in the United Kingdom and overseas.

All eyes will be on Newmarket this weekend as the highly-touted City of Troy makes his seasonal reappearance at the prestigious Guineas Festival.

The unbeaten colt heads a field of 11 in the 2000 Guineas Stakes on Saturday and has been backed as if defeat is out of the question.

Unbeaten in three runs as a two-year-old, the Aidan O’Brien trained horse has had the racing world abuzz with anticipation ahead of the race.

O’Brien believes City Of Troy is the best juvenile he has ever trained and the noises coming out of his stable suggest he has taken a big leap forward over the winter months.

The 1000 Guineas on Sunday has a more open feel to it, with Fallen Angel, Ylang Ylang and Dance Sequence vying for favouritism at the head of the market.

However, the value bet could be the Charlie Appleby-trained Cinderella’s Dream, who makes plenty of each-way appeal at odds of around 20/1 on several leading sportsbooks.

She produced a remarkable performance to win the Jumeirah 1000 Guineas at Meydan earlier this year, powering clear of her rivals despite jockey William Buick’s saddle slipping.

Cinderella’s Dream is bidding to follow in the footsteps of Mawj, who won the same race en route to Guineas glory in 2023.

While the Guineas meeting dominates the landscape in the UK, the focus in North America is undoubtedly on the Kentucky Derby this weekend.

The race at Churchill Downs always attracts massive interest and this year’s renewal promises to be no different given the quality of the line-up.

Trainer Chad Brown has an excellent chance of winning the race for the first time in his career with Sierra Leone. He has won three of his four starts and could be tough to stop on Saturday.

The son Gun Runner produced a dazzling display on his seasonal reappearance in the Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds, powering clear of the field under jockey Tyler Gaffalione.

Sierra Leone was even more impressive in winning the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland last month and should give punters a good run for their money in the Derby.

He has looked on good terms with himself since arriving at Churchill and is strongly fancied to forge past the field down the home stretch.

Florida Derby winner Fierceness could give him plenty to think about, although his habit of throwing in a bad performance makes him a risky betting proposition.

Several respected pundits rate him as the best horse of his generation and he should give jockey John Velazquez a good spin if the he breaks cleanly from the stalls.

The action continues apace during the rest of May, with several important meetings scheduled to take place over the next few weeks.

The Boodles May Festival at Chester is the standout meeting from May 8-10, and will provide useful pointers for major races later in the season.

The Dante Festival at York takes centre stage on May 15-17, while the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury is the headline act on May 18.

The month concludes with the opening day of the Epsom Derby Festival – a meeting which has a special place in the hearts of bettors worldwide.

The Oaks and the Coronation Cup are the main races on May 31 and will serve as the perfect aperitif for the Derby the following day.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Eclipse Magazine
Newsletter Signup

Racing News, What to Wear, Competitions, Features, Betting Tips and More

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team. We'll bring the news to you about once a month. We NEVER share your data.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Scroll to Top