Investec Derby favourite English King will have to overcome a draw of stall one in the Blue Riband at Epsom on Saturday after 16 runners stood their ground at the declaration stage.

Oath in 1999 was the last Derby victor to score from the inside gate. English King will break next to the Aidan O’Brien-trained Mogul, one of six runners declared by the master of Ballydoyle.

O’Brien’s other runners are Russian Emperor, Vatican City, Amhran Na Bhfiann, Mythical and Serpentine.

Royal Ascot winners Highland Chief and Pyledriver have also been declared while the Andrew Balding-trained Kameko will bid to follow up his victory in last month’s 2,000 Guineas.

The field is completed by Emissary, Gold Maze, Khalifa Sat, Max Vega, Mohican Heights and Worthily.

The Investec Oaks field is headed by impressive 1,000 Guineas heroine Love and she will face seven rivals including Frankly Darling, who captured the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot in June.

Ennistymon, second to Frankly Darling in the Ribblesdale, is also searching for Classic glory along with the Roger Varian-trained pair Gold Wand and Queen Daenerys. The line-up is completed by Bharani Star, Passion and Tiempo Vuela.

Owners to be included in Derby day presentations

Connections of winning horses at Epsom on Saturday will have the chance to take part in trophy presentations despite the limitations announced by the British Horseracing Authority earlier this week.

Owners are currently only allowed to attend race meetings in a dedicated owner zone and are not allowed to move into other zones to limit the potential spread of infection with other raceday attendees.

Officials at Epsom racecourse are planning to involve owners in the post-race ceremonies while making sure they meet health protocols.

Phil White, London Regional Director for Jockey Club Racecourses, told the Racing Post: “For each race the trophies will be on the podium in the winner’s enclosure. The trainer and jockey will go up, socially distanced apart, and be interviewed by ITV then have the opportunity to pick up each trophy, similar to what happened at Royal Ascot.

“Then once that’s finished and the trainer and jockey are clear, we will escort the owner down from the owners’ zone and they will have the opportunity also to pick up each trophy, then they’ll be escorted back.

“While we can’t do an official handover presentation for obvious reasons, we do want to try as hard as we can within the rules to give the connections the best possible experience of winning, particularly in the Investec Derby. But we need to make sure the process ticks all the boxes.”

Night Of Thunder to cover to southern hemisphere time

The growing status of Night Of Thunder in the stallion ranks has been recognised after Darley announced on Thursday that the son of Dubawi will cover a limited number of mares to southern hemisphere time this year.

Night Of Thunder’s first crop in Australia have been hitting the headlines while the northern hemisphere counterparts continue to strike in stakes races. With just 16 runners, Night Of Thunder is responsible for eight individual winners in Australia, including Group 3 scorer A Beautiful Night and the Listed-winning River Night.

Eamon Moloney, Nominations Manager at Kildangan Stud said: “The standard that Night Of Thunder’s progeny have achieved in both hemisphere to date are propelling him to an elite stallion status with global appeal.

“He has just finished covering an exceptional book of mares and is now receiving a lot of interest for a limited number of southern hemisphere nominations which will be covered from his base in Kildangan Stud.”