Hopes rise for Grain

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The Independent Online
Encouraging news over Pure Grain, who fractured her off-hind cannon bone when finishing 10th in Sunday's Japan Cup, came yesterday from Michael Stoute.

The Newmarket trainer said: "I spoke to Stuart Messenger, my head lad [who has remained with Pure Grain at the International Stables at Tokyo raceourse], this morning. He said that she is more comfortable.

"It's early days but she is better now than when I left her and it is encouraging that she is already bearing a little weight on the injured leg.'' But Stoute added: ''It would be wrong to be too optimisitic at this stage."