William Buick is set to team up with favourite Crystal Ocean in Saturday’s King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot.
The four-year-old has been partnered by Ryan Moore in each of his three victories this term, including the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot last time.
However, Moore is set to ride for Aidan O’Brien in the 12-furlong Group One this weekend, leaving Sir Michael Stoute to line up Buick for his stable star.
The trainer told the Daily Mirror: “William Buick will ride and will sit on him during the week.”
Crystal Ocean is a best-priced 7-4 market leader for the race.
Stoute is also poised to run Prince of Wales’s Stakes hero Poet’s Word, who will once again be the mount of James Doyle.
His Ascot victim Cracksman was one of 14 to stand their ground for the midsummer showpiece at Monday’s confirmation stage. His trainer John Gosden can also call on Coronet.
O’Brien has five possibles, led by Queen’s Vase and Grand Prix de Paris winner Kew Gardens. Cliffs Of Moher, Hydrangea, Nelson and Rostropovich also feature in the Ballydoyle team.
Sylvester Kirk’s Salouen went close to beating Cracksman in the Coronation Cup and ran a fine race to be third in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud behind Waldgeist, and could meet Andre Fabre’s charge at the weekend.
Mark Johnston’s Investec Derby runner-up Dee Ex Be still has the option, with the potential field completed by Desert Encounter (David Simcock) and Bateel (Francis-Henri Graffard).