Cracksman takes top billing in Prince of Wales’s field

Gosden superstar will face a maximum of eight rivals at Royal Ascot

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Cracksman is the star name among just nine possible runners in Wednesday’s Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot.

John Gosden’s star colt will be looking to put an underwhelming display at Epsom behind him when he was all out to beat Salouen in the Coronation Cup.

Prior to that he had looked exceptional in the Champion Stakes last season and on his return to action in the Prix Ganay.

Sir Michael Stoute’s Poet’s Word, second in the Champion Stakes but a yawning seven lengths away, is Cracksman’s main danger – according to the bookmakers.

He returned to winning ways in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown on his latest appearance.

Aidan O’Brien has left in Cliffs Of Moher and the filly Hydrangea, who has other options during the week.

Martyn Meade will be hoping Eminent can put behind him a disappointing display on his return to action at Chester, while Hawkbill is in the same boat for Charlie Appleby after a no-show in the Coronation Cup.

Desert Encounter, Morando and the French challenger Royal Julius complete the six-day confirmations.

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Ascot 16:20, 20 June 2018

Finished 2 of 7 @ 2/5

slowly into stride and never travelling in 4th, headway on outside and forced wide on home turn, ridden to lead approaching final 2f, headed over 1f out, kept on same pace, no chance with winner

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