Victoria Derby Race Information

The Victoria Derby is a 2500 metre race for three-year-olds run under set weight conditions. It is held by the Victoria Racing Club at Flemington in late October or early November on the Saturday before the Melbourne Cup.

  • Race Type: Group 1
  • Distance: 2500 metres
  • Conditions: Set weights, 3YOs
  • Track: Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne, Victoria
  • Prizemoney: $2,000,000
  • Date: Saturday 4 November 2023

Victoria Derby Race History

See the 2023 Victoria Derby Preview & results

See the 2022 Victoria Derby Preview & results

See the 2021 Victoria Derby Preview & results

See the 2020 Victoria Derby Preview & results

The Victoria Derby was first run in 1855 when it was won by the filly Rose Of May. Fillies won the first three years in a row but over time it has become a male dominated event with the last filly to win being Frances Tressady in 1923. It is the oldest classic race in Victoria and Derby Day is one of the greatest days on the racing calendar as every race is at Group level with four Group 1 events.

The race was originally run over 1½ miles and in 1972 it was changed to 2400 metres when Australia adopted the metric system. However the run from the start to the first turn was regarded as too short and potentially dangerous so in 1973 it was increased to the present distance of 2500 metres. Geldings were not allowed to race in the Derby between 1931 and 1956.

Useful Facts

Last filly to win: Frances Tressady (1923)

Fastest time (2500m): Star Of The Realm (1991) 2:33:06

Interesting trivia: Four generations of the Cummings family have trained winners of this race.

Past winners of the Victoria Derby

The traditional lead-up race is the Group 2 AAMI Vase over 2040 metres at Moonee Valley held one week before on Cox Plate day. Winners of the Vase and Victoria Derby double are Efficient (2006), Plastered (2004), Helenus (2002), Blevic (1994) and Raveneaux (1986) while many horses have won one and been placed in the other. Monaco Consul (2009) won the Group1 Spring Champion Stakes at Randwick as a lead-up.

As the premier staying event for three-year-olds in the spring, the race attracts top class horses. Phar Lap won in 1929 then won the 1930 Melbourne Cup. In 2007 the 2006 Derby winner Efficient was the next horse to win the Melbourne Cup the following year.2003 winner Elvstroem won the 2004 Caulfield Cup and Dulcify (1978) and Red Anchor (1984) both went on to win the next Cox Plate. In 1995 Nothin’ Leica Dane raced the following Tuesday for 2nd in the Melbourne Cup as a three-year-old.

When Prized Icon won in 2016, trainer James Cummings was the fourth generation Cummings to train the winner of this race.

Year Winner Second Third
2023 Riff Rocket Apulia Sunsets
2022 Manzoice Sharp ‘N’ Smart Aberfeldie Boy
2021 Hitotsu Alegron Teewaters
2020 Johnny Get Angry Hit The Shot Young Werther
2019 Warning Southern Moon Soul Patch
2018 Extra Brut Stars Of Carrum Chapada
2017 Ace High Sully (NZ) Astoria
2016 Prized Icon Sacred Elixir (NZ) Inference
2015 Tarzino (NZ) Etymology Kia Ora Koutou
2014 Preferment (NZ) Bondeiger Nozomi
2013 Polanski Complacent Thunder Fantasy
2012 Fiveandahalfstar Super Cool Rawnaq
2011 Sangster Induna Sabrage
2010 Lion Tamer Praecido Retrieve
2009 Monaco Consul Extra Zero Viking Legend
2008 Rebel Raider Whobegotyou Pre Eminence
2007 Kibbutz Littorio Marching
2006 Efficient Gorky Park Teranaba
2005 Benicio Duelled Headturner
2004 Plastered Savabeel Count Ricardo
2003 Elvstroem Kempinsky Our Bahare
2002 Helenus Hydrometer Ain’t There
2001 Amalfi Zerak Pentastic
2000 Hit The Roof Universal Prince Falls the Shadow

From the archives:

2018 Victoria Derby Preview & Tips:

Track: Good   Weather: Fine

There is a full field of 16 plus two emergencies for the $2,000,000 AAMI Victoria Derby. Six of them had their last start in the Listed Geelong Classic over 2200m, five had their last start in the Group 3 Caulfield Classic over 2000m, five in the Group 2 Moonee Valley Vase over 2040m and the two emergencies had their last starts over 2025m at Cranbourne and 2381m at Warrnambool.

The clear favourite in the early market is Thinkin’ Big who had a strong 3 length win in the Caulfield Classic after 3rd in the Spring Champion Stakes and has 4 wins and 2 places from 6 starts. Second favourite is Aramayo who was 3rd in the Moonee Valley Vase afer 2nd in the Spring Champion. Third favourite is Stars Of Carrum who broke his maiden status by winning the Moonee Valley Vase and was a close 2nd in the Listed Hill Stakes the start before.

Savoie won the Derby Trial before 3rd in the UCI Stakes and a close 2nd in the Moonee Valley Vase. Extra Brut won 3 in a row before being a beaten favourite in the Caulfield Classic last start. Farooq was a close 2nd in the Geelong Classic while Chapada was 2nd in the Caulfield Classic. Mickey Blue Eyes and Savvy Oak were 5th and 4th respectively in the Moonee Valley vase. All other runners are currently 20 to 1 or longer, including Home Ground who won the Geelong Classic last start, and first emergency Alessandro who won over 2025m at Cranbourne last start and is bred to stay all day.

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

Jo’s Tips
1 Thinkin’ Big
4 Stars Of Carrum
5 Home Ground
17 Alessandro