Dante Festival 2022 Betting Odds Comparison – York Racing Tips

While not possessing the same prestige as Royal Ascot or the number of top class races as Glorious Goodwood, York’s Dante Festival in May is still very popular with racing punters. The main draw is the race after which the meeting is named, the Dante Stakes. But there are plenty of other compelling races on which to bet too.
The three day Dante Festival takes place from Wednesday to Friday in mid-May each year and with many races very difficult to call, our odds comparison can really come in handy when picking your racing bets. Here we’ll run through some of the best action to expect from the meeting in York, one of the UK’s most popular racecourses, along with a brief history of the Dante Festival. We will also give you some betting strategies and pointers that could help you pick out some winning racing bets (hopefully at great value odds too!).

Date Race

Racing Highlights

If it is plentiful Group 1 races featuring the great and the good from across the world, the Dante Festival probably isn’t the meeting for you (but it’s not too long before Royal Ascot, which fits that bill far better). But if you are seeking highly competitive racing action with contests that range in distance from five furlongs to over two miles, the Dante is worth checking out.

As well as the Dante Stakes itself, the first of the flat season’s significant cup contests takes place in the form of the Yorkshire Cup.

Dante Festival Racing Highlights

Here we’ll give a brief overview of what to expect in each of the biggest races at the Dante Festival.

Duke Of York Stakes

This Group 2 race over six furlongs is run on the opening day and was inaugurated back in 1968. In 1971 it was classified as a Group 3 race but upgraded to Group 2 status in 2003. The race is open to runners aged three years and older but only one horse has won it twice: Handsome Sailor in 1987 and 1988.

It’s definitely a race to test the sprinting prowess of entrants and the likes of Harry Angel, Golden Jubilee Stakes winner Society Rock and Haydock Sprint Cup winner Amadeus Wolf have shown the standard required for success here.

Musidora Stakes

This Group 3 race over a mile and two furlongs is open to three year old fillies only. The race is seen as one of the key trials for the Epsom Oaks. Indeed six runners have won this and gone on to win the fillies-only Classic, with Sariska being the last in 2009.

When looking for your bets for this race, it certainly pays to take notice of what John Gosden has entered. From 2011 to 2017 the trainer saddled a very impressive five winners, and they came on the back of his first winner back in 1993. He’s not the leading trainer for this race though; that honour goes to the late, great Henry Cecil who trained nine winners between 1985 and 2010.

Middleton Stakes

This Group 2 race on the second day of the meeting was originally open to three year old fillies only, but now fillies and mares aged four years old and older can compete. Though the race was only inaugurated in 1981, Michael Stoute has still found time to train six winners, most recently in 2009 with Crystal Capella.

Dante Stakes

So to the big race of the meeting: the Dante Stakes. This one mile race was first run in 1958 but swiftly established itself as one of the most telling trials for the Derby at Epsom. To date 10 winners of the Dante Stakes have gone on to win the Derby, with the 2015 victor Golden Horn being the most recent (ahead of the 2019 season).

It is also worth taking note of horses who run well in this when assessing your racing betting options for the Prix du Jockey Club and the Irish Derby. And with the betting market often quite tight for the Dante Stakes it also pays to check out our odds comparison for the race in order to seek out the best value.

Yorkshire Cup

The Yorkshire Cup is the big handicap race of the final day of the Dante Festival. It has been going a long time, since 1927, and was originally a two mile contest. It is now run over a mile and six furlongs but still requires a hefty dose of stamina for runners to have a chance of winning.

Open to horses aged four years and older, most winners have been aged four or five, but a couple of eight year olds have triumphed in recent times: Sergeant Cecil in 2007 and Clever Cookie in 2016. There is a fair bit of scope to land some each way bets at long betting odds in this one, so be sure to check out our odds comparison for the best current prices.

Betting Strategies and Pointers

As with all horse racing betting, following the value is the way to give yourself the best chance of success. Assessing the value can be tricky in fast-moving racing markets – but that’s where our odds comparison can give you the edge.

For the Dante Festival, conditions are generally good, but if they take a turn for the worse be sure to take this into account as overly soft ground can have a significant effect on many a horse on the flat.

In the Dante Stakes itself, as with many of the races at the meeting, John Gosden’s runners tend to go well. He has saddled four winners in total, including three in recent years: Golden Horn in 2015, Wings Of Desire in 2016 and Roaring Lion in 2018. Frankie Dettori has a decent record at the Dante Festival, as do Paul Hanagan and Andrea Atzeni.

Following the betting markets on the morning of the race day in question has its advantages, though getting ante post bets on can give punters that extra bit of value if they pick wisely.

Dante Festival – A Brief History

A history of the Dante Festival is essentially a history of the race around which the meeting is constructed: the Dante Stakes. The race is named after Dante, the Yorkshire-trained horse who won the 1945 Derby. The race was first run back in 1958 and after initially being given Group 3 status in 1971, it was upgraded to Group 2 in 1980. Is it time for it to be pushed up to Group 1? Many people think so and that could be on the cards with the increasing prestige of the race and class of the horses being sent to post.

Pat Eddery is the leading jockey in the Dante Stakes having ridden to victory six times (1981, 1983, 1985, 1988, 1990 and 1993). Henry Cecil, meanwhile, trained seven winners of the race (1970, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1987 and 1993).

Known as one of the key trials for the Derby at Epsom, the Dante Stakes has become increasingly popular with racing betting fans in recent years. Often a competitive and exciting race, there is usually scope for each way value in what is always a high quality field.

Dante Festival FAQ

The Dante Festival generally occurs around the middle of May, with this being a three-day flat horse race meeting that takes place at York Racecourse. The first day of the Festival takes place on the Wednesday and there is a high-quality card on this day along with the Thursday and Friday, with this widely regarded as one of the biggest meetings in the UK.
The Tattersalls Musidora, Al Basti Equiworld Dante and Yorkshire Cup are among the leading races, with the Musidora taking place on Day One of the Dante Festival, while the Al Basti Equiworld Dante is the showpiece race on Day Two, while the Yorkshire Cup is a high quality race that takes place on Day Three of the Dante Festival.
All the leading bookmakers will offer you the chance to bet the individual races that comprise the Dante Festival. That means that you can place win and each-way bets on the races that interest you the most, while there is also the chance to go through the card and place bets such as Jackpot or Placepot.
If you’re not able to attend the Dante Festival horse racing meetings at York Racecourse, there is alternatively the chance to access horse racing live streaming of all the races. Many horse racing betting sites have a bet and watch service where you can log into your account, place a bet on the race which interests you the most and access live streams.
The Yorkshire Cup takes place on Day Three of the Dante Festival, with the bookmakers often providing antepost betting odds so that you can get early betting odds for this Group 2 encounter, with a large number of runners meaning that many punters like to place each-way bets on this race.
There are a number of bookies who offer customers the chance to claim a free bet or a bonus when they sign up as a new customer. It’s often a simple case of making a deposit and placing a first bet at particular odds and you can then enjoy a free bet which can be placed on any of the available horse races at the meeting.
There are a number of horse racing betting sites who offer customers the chance to get Best Odds Guaranteed, which means you can take an early price on a Dante Festival race and get a bigger price if the Starting Price ends up being larger. You need to make sure that you see the bookie has this concession available and you’ll automatically be given the early price.
The best guide is to look at the Dante Festival racecard and the horse racing betting odds so you can establish which horses have the best chance of winning each race. It’s worth taking into account the previous form of each horse and whether they have competed against any of the runners in the field. It’s also good to observe the trainers and jockeys.