Racing: Knight eyes Sovereign treble

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Highland Knight can provide Andrew Balding with a third consecutive victory in the Sovereign Stakes at Salisbury.

The Kingsclere handler has won this Group Three with Tullius and Side Glance and could be poised for further significant honours with this six-year-old.

Highland Knight is a very good horse on his day, with his trailblazing tendencies having endeared himself to racegoers over the years.

Positive tactics saw the gelded son of Night Shift help himself to a Group Two in Germany last year, while his second-placed finish behind Trumpet Major in the bet365 Mile at Sandown in April was impressive.

Balding’s inmate has not been seen since May, when he again occupied the runners-up berth in the Huxley Stakes at Chester.

Highland Knight appeared to get the mile and a quarter well enough that day, but connections seem to feel he is still a better horse over a mile - especially on fast ground.

The Sovereign Stakes has not unearthed a superstar for quite some time now, and this year’s renewal would not seem an exception to that rule. To that end, jockey David Probert could feasibly be afforded an easy lead from pillar to post, which might be enough to see him home in front.

Steely can be a rather unpredictable individual, but he perhaps still sets the standard in the Centurion VAT Nifty At Fifty Handicap at Chepstow.

Gary Moore’s five-year-old is rarely pleasing on the eye, with his high head carriage a slightly off-putting quirk, but usually performs well at this grade.

Runner-up on his last three starts, the gelded son of Librettist is another who likes to get on with it from the head of affairs.

Things have not quite gone his way of late, but he looks well handicapped for this assignment and, sporting a first-time visor, again has the assistance of Richard Hughes.