Cecil prepared for Sunday best

Three of this year's Classic winners were on view at Ascot a year ago in the two two-year-old highlights on today's card. Oaks winner Reams Of Verse won the Fillies' Mile, with her stablemate Sleepytime (1,000 Guineas) an unlucky third, and Benny The Dip, the Derby winner, took the Royal Lodge Stakes.

The Warren Place scenario is repeated with the experience of one - Midnight Line - backed up by the promise of another, Jibe. This year the rookie, who hacked up at Lingfield in her maiden and has been sparkling at home since, can prevail and give Henry Cecil a hat-trick in the Group One race in the process, Bosra Sham having won two years ago. And Jibe could hardly be better bred to follow in the hoofprints of her distinguished stablemates, being a half-sister to Commander In Chief and Yashmak.

Kilimanjaro earned 1988 Derby favouritism after an eight-length rout of his rivals on soft going at Sandown. Muhtathir was brushed aside by another strong Epsom fancy, Second Empire, in France two weeks ago and his performance today will put that one in perspective. Both City Honours and Teapot Row will appreciate the step up in trip but Kilimanjaro may be able to cope with the faster conditions and stronger opposition today.

And today's prize money is not the only financial consideration where these well-bred youngsters are concerned. On Thursday at Tattersalls in Newmarket, yearling siblings to both Kilimanjaro and Fillies' Mile contender Exclusive (herself Entrepreneur's half-sister) come up for sale.

Ridaiyama comes to the competitive Tote Sunday Special Handicap off an unusual preparation, having been sacrificed as pacemaker in the Prix Vermeille. It took some of Europe's best fillies a bit of time to peg her back and her trainer loves to win big handicaps, but preference is for Singspiel's half-brother Song of Freedom, who is given another chance on his preferred ground.

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