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Harry Angel & Blue Point up for round three in Sprint Cup

Top three-year-olds Harry Angel and Blue Point take each other on for a third time this year in the six-furlong G1 Sprint Cup at Haydock Park, UK, on Saturday, September 9.

The Godolphin duo lined up in the G1 Commonwealth Cup over the same trip at Royal Ascot on June 23, when Harry Angel went down by three-quarters a length to Caravaggio, with a further half-length back to Blue Point in third.

Harry Angel (Clive Cox/Adam Kirby, drawn eight) subsequently reversed the form with Caravaggio with a scintillating victory in the G1 Darley July Cup, also over six furlongs, at Newmarket on July 15.

The son of Dark Angel also holds the six-furlong course record time at Haydock Park, having made all for a comprehensive success in the G2 Sandy Lane Stakes on May 27.

Shamardal colt Blue Point (Charlie Appleby/James Doyle, drawn one), an impressive winner of the G2 Gimcrack Stakes last season, beat Harry Angel by a length and a half on their seasonal returns in the G3 Pavilion Stakes over six furlongs at Ascot on May 3.

Clive Cox commented: “The ground is going to be easier than Harry Angel has encountered so far this year, but he won on proper autumn ground in the G2 Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury last year.

“He broke the course record at Haydock earlier this season, but the ground there can get very soft when it rains.

“I hope that they don’t get too much rain but it will be the same situation for all the runners and I couldn’t be happier with the form that Harry Angel is in.”

Charlie Appleby reported: “Blue Point enjoyed a nice break after Royal Ascot and I couldn’t have been more pleased with his preparation.

“Ideally, we would want to be racing on a sounder surface but that can be unlikely at this time of year.

“We will be wiser after the event but, if he can handle the ground, then he should have a great chance.”

A field of 12 for the Sprint Cup features G1 Prix Maurice de Gheest victor Brando, plus The Tin Man and Tasleet, who were first and second in the G1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes before finishing behind Harry Angel in the Darley July Cup.

Also at Haydock Park on Saturday, Benbatl (Saeed bin Suroor/William Carson) drops back down in class and trip for the 10-runner G3 Superior Mile after coming home fifth in the G1 King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes over 12 furlongs at Ascot on July 29.

The three-year-old Dubawi colt finished fifth over a mile and a half in the British Classic, the G1 Derby at Epsom Downs in June, and stayed on gamely to capture the 10-furlong G3 Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot later the same month.

Saeed bin Suroor said: “Benbatl showed plenty of speed at Ascot last time and has been working well since then.

“The ground should be fine and I am looking for a good result on his return to G3 company.”

Promising two-year-old colt Dubhe (Charlie Appleby/James Doyle) was the easy winner of a mile maiden on soft going at Sandown on August 10 and the son of Dubawi races over the same distance in the Listed Ascendant Stakes which has attracted seven participants.