Big two set to clash at York


Autocratic is in line to clash with French ace Almanzor in the Sky Bet York Stakes on July 29.

Although the Sir Michael Stoute-trained four-year-old holds an entry in the Princess of Wales's Stakes at Newmarket, connections are keen to tackle the Group Two mile-and-a-quarter contest on the Knavesmire instead.

Autocratic bounced back from defeat on his seasonal bow at the Rowley Mile when taking Group Three honours in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown.

Chris Richardson, racing manager to owners Cheveley Park Stud, said: "All being well, Autocratic goes to York for the Group Two at the end of the month.

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"He is in the Princess of Wales's Stakes at Newmarket, but he doesn't run there as we are going to stick at a mile and a quarter.

"There wasn't really any suitable 10-furlong race after Sandown and we didn't want to throw him in at the deep end. He is a typical one of Sir Michael Stoute's that has been brought along slowly.

"We expected him to run well at Sandown as he had scoped cloudy after Newmarket and he needed the run. That put him spot on for Sandown. Sir Michael has a lot of faith in the horse.

"If all goes well at York next time, we might go back for the Juddmonte later in the year."

Last year's European Horse of the Year Almanzor is earmarked to make his seasonal bow at York for Jean-Claude Rouget.

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