At this stage 16 runners have been nominated for the Grade 1 race over 2450m although more runners could be nominated at supplementary entry stage.
The SA Derby is one of four Grade 1 races to be run on Champions Day. The others are the R2-million President’s Champions Challenge, the Computaform Sprint, the Wilgerbosdrift SA Oaks and the SA Nursery.
Louis The King has already won the first two legs of the Triple Crown, the Betting World Gauteng Guineas and SA Classic, and will become only the second horse in South African history to achieve it. The other was Horse Chestnut in 1999.
Mike de Kock and Sean Tarry have each nominated four runners while Alec Laird has entered three. De Kock has included Umgiyo, well supported in SA Classic, Taarish, Gone Baby Gone and Ilitshe, who has won his last two races over 1950m in KwaZulu-Natal.
Tarry has nominated Fort Bellini, Mercado, Sabre Tooth and Supertube, all of whom should enjoy the extra distance. Laird has put in the ever-consistent As You Like, Bouclette Top and Earl Of Derby.
Speedy filly Via Africa has been entered to run in the Grade 1 Computaform Sprint over 1000m The Duncan Howells-trained four-year-old ran in this event last year and finished a 1.25-length second behind What A Winter.
De Kock has nominated both unbeaten two-year-olds Banaadeer and Majmu for the Grade 1 SA Nursery over 1160m. The filly, Majmu, has also been nominated for the SA Fillies Nursery so De Kock has left his options open.
Supplementary entries close at 11am on April 9 after which the weights will be published. Declarations close at 11am on Wednesday April 16.