Stoute stars feature in strong field for York Stakes

Sangarius and Regal Reality entered on the Knavesmire

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Sir Michael Stoute looks to have a tight grip on the Sky Bet York Stakes at York on Saturday.

The Newmarket trainer is represented by Royal Ascot winner Sangarius and Coral-Eclipse third Regal Reality in an 11-strong entry for the extended 10-furlong Group One contest.

Sangarius readily captured the Group Three Hampton Court Stakes at the Royal meting and the progressive Kingman colt could bid to emulate the only previous three-year-old winner of the Knavesmire feature, Best Alibi, who scored for Stoute in 2006.

Prior to his fine run behind Enable at Sandown, Regal Reality had won the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown.

Further three-year-old representation is set to be provided by the Andrew Balding-trained Bangkok, who finished down the field in the Derby but bounced back to form with a good second in the King Edward VII Stakes.

The Australia colt started his campaign with two victories over a mile and a quarter in April, including when comfortably taking the Classic Trial at Sandown.

Alastair Donald, bloodstock manager for King Power Racing, said: “Bangkok is an intended runner on Saturday.

“He came out of the King Edward VII Stakes very well and we are looking forward to seeing him back over 10 furlongs, which we feel is his best distance.”

Mark Johnston’s Matterhorn was third to Regal Reality at Sandown and could reoppose, while Huxley Stakes winner Forest Ranger is in line to take his chance for Richard Fahey.

Fahey said: “This has been the plan for Forest Ranger since he won at Chester and he will definitely run.

“It looks a strong renewal on paper at this stage, but he is a dual Group Two winner and it is a logical place to go.”

Harry Dunlop intends to run Knight To Behold. The four-year-old made all to win the Prix Guillaume d’Ornano at Deauville last August and chased home Crystal Ocean in the Gordon Richards Stakes at Sandown in April.

He was also a close seventh in the Prix d’Ispahan at Longchamp in May.

“The intention is to run Knight To Behold at York. He was entered in the Eclipse, but we just felt that it was too strong a race and we waited for this contest,” said the Lambourn handler.

“Oisin Murphy has ridden Knight To Behold a lot, but he will be down at Ascot, so we have provisionally booked Ben Curtis.”

Making up the list of possibles are Addeybb, Elarqam, Desert Encounter, Spotify and Success Days.

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