Haydock's Sprint Cup Attracts 17

Naval Crown | Dhric/AK


There is no concern with small field sizes in an ultra-competitive edition of Haydock's G1 Betfair Sprint Cup on Saturday, with a maximum line-up of 17 sprinters heading to post after the draw was made on Thursday. In the past 10 runnings, only Dream Of Dreams (Ire) (Dream Ahead) and G Force (Ire) (Tamayuz {GB}) were drawn in double figures, so connections of the leading fancies Minzaal (Ire) (Mehmas {Ire}), Naval Crown (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}), Kinross (GB) (Kingman {GB}) and Art Power (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}) would have been buoyed by seeing their runners handed low numbers for the six-furlong straight clash.


Legend Heads Strong Palmer Challenge

Sunday's G3 Goldene Peitsche winner Dubawi Legend (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}) has been given the go-ahead to back up for the race and will be one of the pace angles breaking from stall four along with the forward-going Art Power and Naval Crown. Dr. Ali Ridha's 'TDN Rising Star' is one of a trio from Hugo Palmer's Manor House Stables alongside Chasemore Farm's G2 Greenlands S. winner Brad The Brief (GB) (Dutch Art {GB}) and the G1 Commonwealth Cup runner-up Flaming Rib (Ire) (Ribchester {Ire}). “It will be very special when we get a first Group 1 from Manor House, after a Group 2 winner and a Group 1 second, and I'm really looking forward to running all three of them,” the trainer told QIPCO British Champions Series. “If it rains I suspect that Brad The Brief has the best chance, but the other two are entries in a stallion-making race, so any one of the three would be wonderful.”

Explaining the absence of Brad The Brief since his career-best in the Greenlands and the Curragh May 21, Palmer added, “It was very quick ground when we were considering the Maurice De Gheest and then he was a non-runner after being declared for the City Of York. He doesn't need it soft–there was no real cut in it at The Curragh–but he doesn't want fast ground, and having waited so long I wouldn't want to go and jar him up out of frustration. Dubai Legend is amazing. He was very happy and fresh when we gave him a quiet canter on Wednesday morning and although it's a big leap from a German Group 3 we are keen to give it a go.”


Ryan Team Wait On The Weather

Last year's Sprint Cup winner Emaraaty Ana (GB) (Shamardal) is in stall 13, but has the front-running G2 King George S. scorer Khaadem (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}) alongside in 12 in what should prove a fascinating encounter. Of more concern than the draw is the effect of the forecast rain, with jockey Andrea Atzeni hoping that it avoids Haydock so as not to diminish the prospect of the first dual winner since 1967. “He likes a strong pace to run at, which he should get once again, but the major key to him is the ground,” he told QIPCO British Champions Series. “We got lucky last year as it was very fast, which is just how he likes it, so ideally we don't want too much rain. I did say to Kevin earlier this year that I thought he might come good in the autumn again, and he's going to Haydock with a very similar profile to last year.”


Tasso Set For Clash

The final field for Sunday's G1 152nd Wettstar Grosser Preis von Baden was also established on Thursday, with Gestut Auenquelle's Arc hero Torquator Tasso (Ger) (Adlerflug {Ger}) in line for his title defence as he limbers up for his return to ParisLongchamp in four weeks' time. Gestut Park Wiedingen's G1 Deutsches Derby and G1 Grosser Dallmayr-Preis winner Sammarco (Ire) (Camelot {GB}) receives seven pounds weight-for-age from the Frankie Dettori-ridden 5-year-old, with Rene Piechulek forced to miss out to honour his retainer on last year's G1 Grosser Preis Von Bayern runner-up Mendocino (Ger) (Adlerflug {Ger}) as five head to post. In a twist, Piechulek had also partnered Sammarco to success in the Grosser Dallmayr-Preis with Bauyrzhan Murzabayev out of action, but that rider is back on board the 3-year-old this time.

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