Shared paths – care and courtesy. Horses rule! Epsom Downs are high, wide and open, and cycling largely unrestricted. However, signs request priority for walkers and horses, and ride surfaces include sand, coir and deep loam that turns near-impassable in wet winters (see Spoke 5W).
Getting Londoners up so high (190m) for Derby Day means there are no fewer than 5 Oysterzone 6 stations in the area, plus Epsom itself. Derby Day was held on the first Wednesday in June, and was something of an unofficial holiday for the whole capital. Before the motor car therefore the train companies extended their networks to reach the Downs.
This eastern option uses Ewell East, starting with a pleasing off-road section through Nescot College, passes Epsom Downs 2 (nowadays brought up short by 250m and tucked away behind a new housing estate) and - destination of Spoke 5 link - Tattenham Corner 2.7 (views!).
Take the metalled road arcing round beside the racecourse rather than the signed track, both for the views and the panel marking the point 2.8 where suffragette Emily Davison threw herself under the horses at the 1913 Derby. After shadowing the racecourse and leaving NCN22 descend Walton Down (or carry straight on on Spoke 5W/ NCN22 for points west), climbing back to Walton on Ebbisham Lane (beware flytipping debris). R on Hurst Lane 4.8 for Arc 7.