Sruthan (purple jacket): bids for back-to-back wins in the Gladness StakesPICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)
Due Diligence set for Curragh return
CRACK Irish sprinter Due Diligence is set to make his reappearance in the Group 3 Big Bad Bob Gladness Stakes at the Curragh on Sunday.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt, last seen when finishing second to Slade Power in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes in June, is ante-post favourite for next month’s Duke Of York Clipper Logistics Stakes at the Dante meeting and will face a maximum of ten rivals on Sunday.
The four-year-old won twice over six furlongs at Naas before his fine run at Royal Ascot when partnered by Ryan Moore, and steps up to seven furlongs in what will be his fourth turf start for Ballydoyle.
In opposition will be stablemate Smuggler’s Cove, the Dermot Weld-trained Alkasser, and last year’s winner Sruthan, while Britain is well represented with three entries, including Charlie Hills’s Cable Bay.
David O’Meara, who saddled last year’s runner-up Custom Cut, sends That Is The Spirit, while David Nicholls has his first runner in Ireland since 2013 in the form of race-fit six-year-old Sovereign Debt, who has been a revelation on the All-Weather this winter and was an unlucky second over a mile on Finals Day.
The trainer said: “He’s come out of Lingfield well and with the ground drying over we’ll go over and take our chance.”
Chookie Royale, who had been a 20-1 chance for the Duke Of York Stakes, has been taken out of the Group 2 race by trainer Keith Dalgleish.