Queensland Derby Race Information

The Queensland Derby is a three-year-old set weights race over 2400 metres. The race is held in early June each year at Eagle Farm during the Winter Racing Carnival.

  • Race Type: Group 1
  • Distance: 2400 metres
  • Conditions: Set weights, 3YOs
  • Track: Eagle Farm Racecourse, Brisbane, Queensland (moved to Doomben for 2017 and 2018)
  • Prizemoney: $600,000
  • Date: Saturday 29 May 2021

Queensland Derby Race History

See the 2021 Queensland Derby Preview and Results.

The first Queensland Derby was run in 1868 at Gayndah where it was won by Hermit. In 1969 a horse called Zambesi won the race ridden by a local boy called William Harris who was only ten years old. This makes him the youngest jockey in the history of Australian racing to win a race that now has Group 1 status. In 1970 the race was run twice – once at Gayndah and once in Brisbane – and the horse Grafton won both. In 1871 it was moved permanently to Brisbane.

The Queensland Derby has had Group 1 status since 1980. The race carries prizemoney of $600,000 and it is Set Weights over 1600m with a 2 kg allowance for fillies. It was conducted in November until 1972 and was moved from spring to the Winter Carnival in 1973. It was not run during the war years 1942-1945 as Eagle Farm was taken over by the army. In 2017 and 2018 it was switched to 2200m at Doomben because of issues with the track surface at Eagle Farm. In 2020 it was not held because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Useful Facts

Fastest time (2400m): De Gaulle Lane (2001) 2:25:20

Interesting trivia:

Previous winners of the Queensland Derby

The late Tommy Smith trained 12 winners of this race – Dorset Downs (1991), Our Planet (1982), Kingston Town (1980), Cheyne Walk (1976), Analie (1973), Silver Sharpe (1970), Dark Briar (1966), Bahram Star (1965), Travel Boy (1959), Tulloch (1957), Castillo (1963) and Forest Beau (1951). It is hard to imagine this record will ever be broken.

Jockeys who have won the Queensland Derby three times each are Jim Cassidy, Mick Dittman and George Moore.

Year Winner Second Third
2021 Kukeracha Senor Toba Explosive Jack
2020  ** Race not run **
2019 Mr Quickie Vow And Declare Aliferous
2018 Dark Dream Heavenly Thought Youngstar
2017 Ruthven Rockstar Rebel Ana Royale
2016 Eagle Way Rodrico I’m Belucci
2015 Magicool Werther (NZ) Jumbo Prince
2014 Sonntag Pinstripe Lane (NZ) Vilanova (NZ)
2013 Hawkspur Electric Fusion Honorius
2012 Brambles Quintessential Westsouthwest
2011 Shootoff Shez Sinsational Heidilicious
2010 Dariana Kutchinsky Miss Keepsake
2009 Court Ruler Shocking Larrys Never Late
2008 Riva San Petushki Moatize
2007 Empires Choice Volcanic Star Sirmione
2006 Ice Chariot Cape Breton Loanhead
2005 Lachlan River Lords A Leaping Vitesse Dane
2004 Toulouse Lautrec Devastating Set Up
2003 Half Hennessy Schumpeter King Of Them All
2002 County Tyrone Galroof Miss Bussell
2001 De Gaulle Lane Tempest Morn Lottery Prize
2000 Freemason Citras Prince Maguire

From the archives:

Queensland Derby Preview & Tips 2018

Track: Soft   Weather: Showers

A full field of 16 plus 5 emergencies were nominated for the $600,000 2018 Channel 7 Queensland Derby, including one filly. Following the early scratching of Tangled, Chris Waller still has 5 runners and Darren Weir, Kris Lees and Hayes/Dabernig each have 2 runners. The market is fairly open with Dark Dreams who came 3rd in the Grand Prix Stakes narrowly ahead of Heavenly Thought who won that race.

Vying for third favouritism are Live And Free who has 3 wins and 2 places from 6 starts, and Lucky For All who has 3 wins from 5 starts. Youngstar is the only filly in the race and has won her last 4 starts, culminating in the Queensland Oaks. Han Xin was 2nd in the Grand Prix Stakes. All other runners are currently $20 or more, including Rezealient who has run 2nd at his last 3 starts, including the SA Derby.

The following are the top 4 selections from our tipster panel for this years race.

Jo’s Tips
2 Heavenly Thought
7 Live And Free
16 Youngstar
1 Dark Dream