Sole Power: sprint star has yet to win over the Sprint Cup trip of 6fPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
New market leaders as Diligence misses out
SOLE POWER and Gordon Lord Byron are locked at the head of the betting for the Betfred Sprint Cup after ante-post favourite Due Diligence was taken out of Saturday's showpiece at Haydock.
The Aidan O'Brien-trained sprinter joins Sole Power's stablemate Slade Power in missing the Group 1, for which 25 horses are still engaged. Es Que Love, successful in the 7f Lennox Stakes last time, is set to drop back in trip after being supplemented for the race at a cost of £15,600.
Speaking on At The Races, O'Brien said: "Due Diligence won't run as he's tweaked a little muscle. He might be finished for the season and hopefully he's a horse we can look forward to next season."
Nunthorpe Stakes hero Sole Power, who has never won over the Sprint Cup trip of 6f, and last year’s winner Gordon Lord Byron hold the strongest claims, according to the bookmakers, with the sponsors slightly favouring Sole Power (4-1) over Gordon Lord Byron (9-2). Both horses are a best-priced 5-1.
Betfred spokesman Andrew Griffiths said: "Despite the absence of Slade Power and Due Diligence, the Irish still have a strong hand with the front two in the market.
"Sole Power is undoubtedly the king of the five-furlong division and we make him a marginal favourite to prove he can do the business over six."
Connections of Sole Power have stated their star will run only if conditions are quick and although the going at Haydock is good to soft, soft in places, a dry and warm week is forecast.
Music Master, Tropics, G Force and Aljamaaheer are other leading contenders in the high-class list of entries, while Moviesta has attracted support off the back of positive gallop reports.