After a fun Thursday night at Newcastle for the William Hill Racing League, it’s all eyes on Ascot and Haydock. We’ve got a good team of horses lining up over the next couple of days, including Garrus in the Sprint Cup, so fingers crossed we get a bit of luck.

Dark Shift, Ascot, Friday

He seems to have really strengthened up since Goodwood. He’s a much bigger and stronger horse now and that hasn’t surprised me as he’s from a late, maturing family.

Hopefully, he’ll get better as he gets older and I’m excited to see how he goes on Friday as well as next season.

The heavens opened just before he ran at Goodwood and that softer ground just isn’t what he wants. He got caught in a pocket a couple of times too, so I think you can just put a line through that run.

He likes Ascot and I’m hoping a return to the track will see him to much better effect.

Wanees, Ascot, Saturday

I put him up as one to follow at the start of the season and I’m hoping he can come good after a fairly promising debut at Newbury last time. He’ll have learned a lot from his first run and should take a good step forward. I’ve been really happy with him since, and I’d like to think the stiff track at Ascot will suit him.

Hopefully, they go a good gallop out in front because I think that’s what he needs.

Baashir, Ascot, Saturday

It was a funny race at York last time. There can often be strange results over the mile at York and it’s very hard to make up ground on the leaders. He started about where he finished, and I don’t think he ran too badly all things considered.

I don’t envisage him having any issues dropping back to seven furlongs and I’d like to think a mark of 97 is still within his compass.

Garrus, Sprint Cup, Haydock, Saturday

He’s come back really fresh and well from France and we thought there aren’t too many races left for him for the remainder of the season, so we’ve decided to give it a go. It’s a quick turnaround but he’s obviously in great form and we’re looking forward to it.

When we got him back in the yard earlier in the week, he seemed very well in himself and was displaying all the signs we look for really.

He loves a flat track as he showed at Deauville and the fast ground should also play to his strengths, so there won’t be an excuse on either of those fronts.

Starman looks the horse to beat. He’ll like the ground as our lad will, but there are plenty of others in there who have solid claims, namely the three that beat us in the July Cup in Art Power, Creative Force and Glen Shiel. It’s going to be tough to win, but that’s the way Group 1s should be.