Carr: Sovereign can hit top gear again

Sovereign Debt has made a brilliant start in his new surroundings

Ruth Carr feels Sovereign Debt has a score to settle when he bids to continue his renaissance in the Investec Diomed Stakes at Epsom on Saturday.

The popular eight-year-old grey has stepped up from his previously good standard of form since moving from David Nicholls to Carr's yard in North Yorkshire with a career-best performance to land the Group Two bet365 Mile at Sandown five weeks ago.

Carr has given her new stable star a break since then and is now looking for him to put the record straight for a nightmare run in this race 12 months ago, when he was a never-nearer fourth to Tullius.

"We just wanted to give him a little freshen-up because he had three quick runs. He seems in really good order," she said.

"He ran well in this race last year and was unlucky not to be closer. Hopefully, he gets the luck in running this time.

"The 5lb penalty makes it tough but he got it for winning a Group Two and it was nice to tick that box. You just wonder about some of the younger, up-and-coming horses in the race.

"We will see how gets on in his next few runs with a penalty.

"I am leaning towards keeping him away from the superstar milers because he is an older horse and it would be nice to keep his confidence high.

"But it might be that we are forced to go down the Group One road at some point."

Richard Hannon has two live contenders in Oh This Is Us and Kool Kompany, who have both been in winning form this season.

"Oh This Is Us won well in the Listed race last time at Haydock and we never quite know how good he is," the Marlborough handler told www.richardhannonracing.co.uk.

"He just gets there and every time we step him up in grade and seems to find some more improvement. He is a great horse to have in the yard and I expect a bold run from him at Epsom.

"Kool Kompany won well at Doncaster and just did a bit too much last time at Sandown on ground that was softer than ideal. He has been working well and if he settles he should run a big race."

Charlie Appleby believes Folkswood has strong claims, having shown a consistent level of form this term.

"He's ultra-consistent and has carried his Dubai form through to Britain with two very respectable runs in the Earl of Sefton and the Huxley Stakes," said Godolphin's trainer.

"I think the track and trip will suit him, with him being ridden on the pace, and hopefully he goes there with a big chance."

Sir Michael Stoute's Ballet Concerto was a good winner of the Spring Mile at Doncaster but failed to reproduce that effort when fifth to stablemate Playful Sound in a nine-furlong handicap at Newmarket a month ago.

Bruce Raymond, racing manager to owner Saeed Suhail, said: "He's got a bit to do on ratings, but you can forget his last run.

"There was no pace on and that didn't suit him. I'm sure he'll be better on this round track."

Andrew Balding warns Here Comes When will not line up unless there is some rain to ease the ground.

Connections would like to run following the seven-year-old's convincing at York recently, but will not take the risk unless the ground is suitable.

"He's in great form but he won't run unless they get rain and that's looking less likely now," said the Kingsclere handler.

"If we feel the ground is right he'll run and run well but he needs rain."

Custom Cut bids to make it third-time lucky in this race after having been placed in the last two renewals.

David O'Meara's admirable eight-year-old showed he was no back-number when picking up the Group Three Amethyst Stakes at Leopardstown four weeks ago.

The field is completed by the ever-busy Gabrial, who is having his seventh race of the year.


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