Ulysses and Foundation to clash at Windsor
Two horses that began the year with Classic aspirations clash in the Winter Hill Stakes at Windsor on Saturday evening.
Last season's renewal featured the subsequent winners of the Canadian International and the Champion Stakes, but neither Cannock Chase nor Fascinating Rock won the Group Three, with the honour going to Racing History.
With Cannock Chase retired, Michael Stoute has a gap to fill and will be hoping Ulysses can continue the winning vein.
Bred to be top class, being by Galileo out of Oaks winner Light Shift, he emerged as a Derby contender late in the day after winning a Newbury maiden by eight lengths.
He never figured in the Classic but after a break he was a cosy winner of the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood.
Alan Cooper, racing manager to Ulysses' owners, Flaxman Stables Ireland Ltd, said: "He is a highly-regarded colt.
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"In the spring you slightly have to put a bit of pressure on them to get them ready for the Derby.
"Michael has given him some nice time now to freshen him up as we saw at Goodwood and we'll just take it from here."
As a Royal Lodge winner and considered unlucky in the Racing Post Trophy, John Gosden's Foundation was much more of a high-profile horse over the winter.
He even had excuses in the Craven at Newmarket and York in the Dante, but he was last in the French Derby and subsequently gelded.
There was a bit more promise in the Rose of Lancaster at Haydock last time but he has plenty to prove at present.
Harry Herbert, racing manager for owners Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, said: "We are just watching the ground as that firm ground that he encountered at Haydock was not up his street at all.
"We're going over a mile and a quarter, but we'd not be afraid of stepping up to a mile and half in the future. I can't wait to step him up in trip.
"John Gosden tells me he's in great form, so we'll be hoping for a good run."
Roger Charlton's Ayrad drops back down to 10 furlongs, with the Hughie Morrison-trained Not So Sleepy returning to action closer to home after running in Germany last time out.
Henry Candy's Chain Of Daisies is the only filly, while Tony Curtis, trained by Richard Hannon, steps up in trip.
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