Australian Derby Tips & Betting Advice

2020 Australian Derby

Date Saturday 4 April
Track Royal Randwick
Distance 2400m
Class  Group 1
Race Type Set Weights
Prizemoney $2 million
Age 3YOs


Our experts will have their pre-race predictions and Australian Derby betting selections available for the Group 1 race.

Some key pointers are:

  • The best lead up form to follow is the Rosehill Guineas
  • A finish in the top five in the last start is essential
  • A draw in barriers 1-3 is advantageous

The Championships Day 1 Expert Tips


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The Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m) takes place at Randwick annually in April during the Sydney Autumn Carnival and is a staying race for three-year-olds.

It attracts the best staying three-year-olds from Australia and New Zealand and is part of a fantastic day of racing on Day 1 of The Championships that also includes the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m), the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) and the Group 1 Inglis Sires‘ (1400m).

The Australian Derby is a set-weights race run over 2400m and is open to fillies, colts and geldings. Males carry 56.5kg in the race and any fillies taking part in the race get a 2kg allowance.

Some of the runners in the Australian Derby may have contested the Randwick Guineas (1600m) held a month earlier and the Rosehill Guineas (2000m) held two weeks earlier.

It was first run in 1861 when won by Kyogle when it was known as the AJC Randwick Derby Stakes. In 1865 the race was renamed the AJC Australia Derby Stakes then from 1873 through 1993 it was called the AJC Derby.

Although the race officially became the AJC Australian Derby in 1994, it is still commonly referred to as the AJC Derby.

The official records show that Prince Humphrey won the Australian Derby in 1928, but he apparently wasn’t in the race. It was a horse called Cragsman, by the same sire but with a different dam.

The honour roll is exceptional with numerous Australian Derby winners going on to become household names with the most famous being Phar Lap who won the race in 1929.

Other former winners of the Australian Derby include The Barb (1866), Robinson Crusoe (1876), Peter Pan (1932), Tulloch (1957), Kingston Town (1980), Mahogany (1994), Octagonal (1996), It’s A Dundeel (2013) and Criterion (2014).

Many of the horses that have won the Australian Derby have gone on to win some of the country’s most prestigious races in the following years with the Caulfield Cup, Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup being likely targets.

Australian Derby Winners (Since 2000)

2000 Fairway
2001 Universal Princ
2002 Don Eduardo
2003 Clangalang
2004 Starcraft
2005 Eremein
2006 Headturner
2007 Fiumicino
2008 Nom De Jeu
2009 Roman Emperor
2010 Shoot Out
2011 Shamrocker
2012 Ethiopia
2013 It’s A Dundeel
2014 Criterion
2015 Mongolian Khan
2016 Tavago
2017 Jon Snow
2018 Levendi
2019 Angel Of Truth

2020 Quick Thinker


Randwick is the largest racetrack in New South Wales and all races are run in a clockwise direction. It is a sweeping track with a rise from the 300m mark to the winning post in the home straight.

As well as the main track, Randwick Racecourse contains a second track known as Kensington. Due to large rainfall in the area, Kensington has been reconstructed using the Strathayr racing surface which is similar to Moonee Valley.

Strathayr is a turf cover over a base of sand, this means it is a free draining track which can take a substantial amount of rain without affecting the rating.


Originally known as the ‘Sandy Course,’ Randwick Racecourse was first used in 1833 where a private match race between two horses was held.

In 1840 the track was abandoned as a racecourse and used for training purposes before the Australian Jockey Club (AJC) moved its headquarters to Randwick and held a meeting in 1860.

The Queen Elizabeth II stand was opened to the public on August 4, 1969, and in 1992, Queen Elizabeth II visited Randwick and opened the new $30 million Paddock Grandstand.

The Australian Derby (2400m) remains one of the longest standing races to be held at Randwick after its inaugural running took place in 1861.

Randwick hosts some of Australia’s most iconic Group 1 races throughout the year, during both the spring and autumn carnivals in Sydney.

The Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Doncaster Mile and TJ Smith Stakes are some of the elite races taking place at Randwick during the prestigious The Championships during the autumn.