The Group 1 Sprint Cup at Haydock Park takes centre-stage on Saturday where Kempton and Ascot also feature.
Even with the late absence of Ten Sovereign and Advertise it’s still a sexy race and the three-year-olds still have a strong-ish hand in the featured 6f contest at 16:10.
There is no doubt the most exciting horse, potentially, is Khaadem, who blitzed his rivals while landing a huge gamble in the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood.
Charlie Hills hope has come a long way since being behind Advertise, Hello Youmzain and Ten Sovereigns in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot.
Khaadem could be anything, and has some form on easy ground. He’s not Battaash yet, but he might become the six-furlong equivalent for connections. Invincible Arny was miles behind Advertise at Deauville and now has cheek-pieces fitted. He’s an admirable horse for James Tate, but I doubt he’s going to win the excellent handler a Group 1 on Saturday.
Of the outsiders, surely The Tin Man is the one it’s possible to take a chance on? The defending champion has been out of form for James Fanshawe this season, but he loves the conditions and has Oisin Murphy on top. He’ll be getting on for 20-1 on the morning prices, and there have been worse big-race hopes than him.
For me though, I’ll have a few quid on DREAM OF DREAMS @ 7/2. I just think everything is in place for him to have every chance of at least hitting the frame.
Sir Michael Stoute’s charge has every chance on his second to Blue Point in the Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot where he was just beaten by a head. It’s just disappointing he ran only 10th in the July Cup.
One thing for sure though is that soft ground is a plus and he stays well.
This could be a huge day for Danny Tudhope.
The Group 3 Superior Mile Stakes at Haydock 14.25 is wide open with SHARJA BRIDGE likely to enjoy conditions and trying to return to his best form for Roger Varian.
The Royal Ascot winner loves cut in the ground.
Miss O’Connor is improving fast, and was impressive at this track for trainer William Haggas last time. The ground is no problem and she will be a tough nut to crack.
Raising Sand will enjoy the conditions but might not get the strong gallop he likes to run at. Even the old boy Here Comes When can’t be ruled out. Remember he won the Sussex in bottomless conditions and landed this prize last term.
ITV also show the 13.50 at Haydock, a handicap over 1m 6f. Stamina will be key here and I will take a chance on TREUSHAN who stays strong for Alan King. I was at Ffos Las when he won last time and he did it well. Have a few quid each-way on what could be a double-digit price.
There’s another 1m 6f handicap at 15.35 at the Lancashire track where RESHOUN, who handles give in the ground and stays well, should have place claims at least for Ian Williams in an open-looking race.
At Kempton, there’s the Group 3 Semptember Stakes over 1m 4f at 14.05. This marks the return of BEST SOLUTION for Saeed bin Suroor, and it’s hard to get away from him. He’s been absent since the Melbourne Cup, but is a multiple Group 1 winner against lesser lights.
Royal Line is interesting for John Gosden, having hacked up in the November Handicap at Doncaster.
His return this term was not too bad at Sandown and he’s lightly raced.
Mootasadir has been out of form of late, so the best outsider might be Gibbs Hill, who returned to some sort of form last time.
There’s a competitive mile handicap at 15.15 and it’s another tricky heat.
KUWAIT CURRENCY was a useful juvenile back in the day and a 5lb rise might not be enough to stop the Richard Hannon runner.
And finally don’t miss the two races from at Ascot on what is a bumper Saturday on ITV. SPANISH CITY is up 1lb for a success last time at Yarmouth over this trip and has every chance from a handicapping point of view for Roger Varian in the 7f handicap at 14.45. Marco Ghiani takes a useful 7lb off and the cheekpieces are fitted for the first time.
FAYLAQ was beaten over course and distance last time after a couple of wins but remains in good form for a crack at the 15.55 at Ascot.
Has every to win chance again for William Haggas.
*Prices correct at time of publishing