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Kevin Ryan says his top trio are up for the Cup at Haydock

6 Sep 2019

Trainer will run Brando, Hello Youmzain and Major Jumbo in Betfair Sprint Cup on Saturday.

Hello Youmzain was third in the Commonwealth Cup and boast strong course form. Picture: Racingfotos.com

Kevin Ryan is relishing running three contenders in the £300,000 Betfair Sprint Cup at Haydock on Saturday. The North Yorkshire-based trainer will saddle Brando, Hello Youmzain and Major Jumbo in the six-furlong showpiece, which forms part of the 35-race QIPCO British Champions Series.

Brando will attempt to go one better than when runner-up in last year’s renewal and showed he retains all his ability when a neck runner-up to Advertise, who he will meet again, in the Larc Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville last month. Hello Youmzain, four years his junior, finished third to the same horse in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot on his latest start, while Major Jumbo will go to post on the back of an easy Listed success at Chester.

“All three are in good form and the ground will suit each of them. It’s great to have three horses good enough to run in the race and we are really happy with all of them,” Ryan said.

“Brando ran a fantastic race in France last time when the ground was just quick enough for him. He’s as good as ever and has won a Group 1 plus been runner-up in three more.

“Hello Youmzain ran a great race when third in the Commonwealth Cup after missing the break. That can happen, especially in sprints, and was a one-off. Saturday’s a different day and a different race.

“He’s got good course form and we’ve waited for Haydock, plus he’s only a young horse and we didn’t want to over-race him. After this there is the sprint on QIPCO British Champions Day for him.”

Asked if Hello Youmzain had improved since the Royal Meeting, Ryan replied: “He doesn’t have to, he’s a good horse who was born with ability. Some horses develop it, but from day one he’s always been high-class.”

Of Major Jumbo, who has won or been placed in 22 of his 30 races, he added: “He has to take a step forward again but he’s very game and genuine.”

Aidan Fogarty  is hoping Forever In Dreams, a daughter of Dream Ahead (won the Sprint Cup in 2011) who beat all bar Advertise in the Commonwealth Cup last time, can land a blow for the minnows.

“We’ve only a small yard and have only ten horses right now but that means we are able to give her some extra TLC,” he said. “We also have her entered in the Flying Five [at the Curragh on Sunday week] but thought six furlongs with a bit of cut in the ground would suit her better. She’s won at Haydock before and it’s a nice trip from Ireland. It’s only an hour and a half on the boat and doesn’t take a whole pile out of them.

“She’s a very strong, good-looking filly and we’ve given her a break since Ascot. I wouldn’t mind a little bit of the 33/1 [quoted by the bookmakers] myself. If she was in a bigger yard I don’t think she’d be that price.”

Oisin Murphy rode Forever In Dreams in the Commonwealth Cup but stays loyal to The Tin Man, who he guided to Betfred Sprint Cup glory last year. In his absence, she will be ridden by Billy Lee, 33, for the first time. He has enjoyed Group 1 glory aboard Romanised this year but will be seeking his first success in Britain since landing the Royal Hunt Cup aboard Settle For Bay last summer.

The first five home in the Darley July Cup were all representatives of the Classic generation and Fogarty, who has held a licence since 2012, observed: “I’d say it’s not a bad batch of three-year-olds. She’s up against some good colts and we are under no illusions but we are hopeful of a big run. Later in the season the Prix de la Forêt and QIPCO British Champions Sprint are possible races for her but we will get Saturday out of the way first.”

The Tin Man was not winning out of turn 12 months ago, having finished second and third in the previous two renewals of the race. He has yet to reproduce his best form this campaign and attempts to become only the second two-time winner after Be Friendly, who won the first two runnings in 1966 and 1967.

Dream Of Dreams, runner-up in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, and Invincible Army, whose three victories this year include the Group 2 Duke of York Clipper Logistic Stakes, add depth, while Khaadem, the emphatic Unibet Stewards’ Cup winner, provides further intrigue.

Jim Crowley rides Khaadem and said: “He was brilliant in the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood and we have always held him in high regard. He is stepping up to Group 1 company, but I believe that’s where he deserves to be. I think he has a good chance.”

Additional intrigue in the 13-runer line-up is added by Waldpfad, trained in Germany by Dominic Moser. The five-year-old won the Hackwood Stakes at Newbury in July at the principal expense of Khaadem but has since been beaten at Baden-Baden.

Advertise has been ruled out after scoping dirty on Friday, while Ten Sovereigns will miss the race because of the soft ground.