Khaadem bids to bounce back in Cathedral Stakes
The Charlie Hills-trained sprinter has been out of luck since the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood in August 2019, but has taken on the best at Group One level.
He was fourth in both the Diamond Jubilee Stakes and the July Cup last season.
Khaadem returned to action at Meydan in March but was below his best in the Al Quoz Sprint won by Extravagant Kid, who represents America in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot.
His first run back in the UK did not go to plan on heavy ground at Haydock – where he was third of four to Cape Byron, another horse with Royal Ascot aspirations in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes.
However, Hills is expecting a much better performance from the five-year-old on Sunday.
“It looks the right spot for him,” he said.
“It was desperate ground at Haydock. He couldn’t act on it, so we put a line through the run.”
Andrew Balding is hoping a break has done Shine So Bright good.
The grey was last of four to Pogo in a Listed contest at Leicester, and returns after a 50-day absence.
“He’s been a little bit below par the last couple of runs – but he’s had a break, and I’ve been pleased the way he’s been working,” said Balding.
“He’s a talented horse on his day, and these are his optimum conditions, so he wouldn’t be without a chance.”
The other older horse in the line-up is the four-year-old Mums Tipple, from Richard Hannon’s yard.
The other three runners are three-year-olds, headed by the Mick Channon-trained Cairn Gorm.
A Group Three scorer at Deauville in August, the Bated Breath colt tackled even stronger company and contested the Group One Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere at ParisLongchamp in October.
Roger Varian’s Line Of Departure, winner of a valuable sales race at Doncaster, plus Hugo Palmer’s Chocoya, complete the sextet.