One in ten of crowd will not be back next year

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Did everyone have lots of fun at the Derby? Apparently not. The Epsom executive conducted some research among the 56,253 crowd on Saturday and discovered that 10% said they would not come again next year.

As 89% said they would return in 12 months the statistics are rather encouraging for the course. Even more heartening is that when asked: "How do you rate the Derby as a day out?", 48% described it as excellent, 49% good, 3% poor and 0% bad.

The crowd was divided about the preferred day for staging the race as 55% said moving the Derby from Wednesday to Saturday was a good thing and 43% said it was not.

However, bookmakers reported a 20% drop in turnover on the race and joined a number of trainers calling for a return to Wednesday. Roger Charlton, who ran Mystic Knight on Saturday, said: "Although I was in favour of the race being held on a Saturday, I now think we should all go back and accept our mistake." Dick Hern, trainer of Alhaarth, agreed: "I much prefer Wednesday. It makes the race three days farther away from Royal Ascot and it seems better to run the Derby on the first day of the meeting."