Sir Busker team to explore stepping up in trip

William Knight is hoping stable flag-bearer Sir Busker will be able to open up trip options when he lines up in the Sky Bet York Stakes on July 23.

The six-year-old won the Silver Royal Hunt Cup at Ascot two years ago and while he has not scored subsequently, he has run some fine races in defeat for the Newmarket handler.

Four of his last five runs have come in Group One races, including creditable defeats in the Jebel Hatta and Dubai Turf at Meydan.

Though he has been well held by Baaeed on his last two starts – in Newbury’s Lockinge and the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot – Knight feels he ran well on his last outing against the horse rated the best in the world.

Owned by Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds, Sir Busker will have his sights lowered as he bids to race beyond nine furlongs for the first time on the Knavesmsire.

Knight said: “Sir Busker ran well enough. I think he just found that ground quick enough that day at Ascot.

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William Knight (right) says Checkandchallenge is a proper horse
William Knight (right) says Checkandchallenge is a proper horse (John Walton/PA)

“We are going to go and try a mile and a quarter with him at York in the York Stakes.

“He has got a mile and one (furlong) around Meydan, so we hope he will appreciate it. It is worth a shot.”

Knight is also looking ahead to lucrative pots at the back-end of the season with Checkandchallenge, who was slowly into his stride before finishing with a rattle to chase home Sinjaari in the Coral Challenge at Sandown last Saturday.

“He heads to Goodwood for the Thoroughbred Stakes (July 29),” added Knight.

“Though a disappointment in the Guineas (when 10 lengths behind Coroebus), he didn’t get a clear run that day, so it was nice to have him back on track. I think he is a proper horse.

“He was given a Celebration Mile entry the other day, which is a Group Two at Goodwood four weeks later.

“There are potential races over in France and hopefully he will be good enough that we can look at races like the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (at Ascot on October 15), later in the season.”

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