Racing: Singspiel receives International call-up

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The theory that the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes may have been the terminus for several careers will get its first testing in the International Stakes at York next week. Singspiel, who finished fourth in the Ascot race run at a murderous pace over Berkshire sludge, booked his passage to the Knavesmire with a satisfactory piece of morning work at Newmarket yesterday.

Singspiel's King George defeat at the hands of Swain represented only the third time in 19 starts he had been out of the first three. The five- year-old, the winner of the Japan Cup and Dubai World Cup, is a spit away from pounds 3.5m in prizemoney and will further stretch his lead as Europe's richest earner if the judgement of Michael Stoute proves correct. Stoute said yesterday: "After working this morning, Singspiel is an intended runner."

There will, however, be no attempt at redemption from another Freemason Lodge inmate, as Entrepreneur's movements on the same gallops yesterday were not fluent enough to convince Stoute that the 2,000 Guineas winner had returned to his peak. The Classic winner ran a most awkward race in the Derby, struggling from the outset but still managing to fill fourth spot. He will not be rushed in the aftermath of those exertions. Stoute added: "Although Entrepreneur worked pleasingly, we feel he would benefit from a little more time."

As Singspiel will instead be challenged by Bosra Sham, Benny The Dip and Desert King next Tuesday, there will be blandishments to the effect that this is the second race of the decade inside a month. York may not possess the overall strength of Ascot's field, but it will display a wider range of attraction with a top class filly plus two of the best horses from the Classic generation.

Desert King, the Irish 2,000 Guineas and Derby winner will, like all Aidan O'Brien's horses at the Ebor meeting, be ridden by Michael Kinane. It was revealed this week that the Ballydoyle horses competing outside Ireland will not be ridden by their regular domestic partner and, as Christy Roche is 47, it is unlikely he will be riding for O'Brien within his home shores for much longer either.

Other riding arrangements have yet to be finalised. Frankie Dettori is expected to ride Singspiel, as the Godolphin entry of Alhaarth and Allied Forces have alternative engagements, but his name is also in the hat for the appointment with Benny The Dip. Other candidates for John Gosden's horse include Olivier Peslier, the French champion who won the Dante Stakes on the colt, and Willie Ryan, his Derby-winning partner. It is thought that Landon Knight, Benny The Dip's owner, wants Peslier, Gosden wants Dettori and Ryan wants Ryan.

Bosra Sham will be piloted by Pat Eddery now that Kieren Fallon has been too naughty on the racecourse for the liking of the filly's owner, Wafic Said. She worked well on Saturday and galloped beautifully on Tuesday on Newmarket's Racecourse Side, fuelling the belief she can be Henry Cecil's first winner of the race since Wollow in 1976.

Warren Place also fields Bold Fact in the Gimcrack at the meeting, which means you should make sure there are a few people between you and the stands running rail next Wednesday. If Bold Fact swerves away his chance there should still be a Cecil juvenile winner in the shape of Chester House. The Goodwood winner scored on his debut rather scrappily but continues to work well and will be a short price for Tuesday's Acomb Stakes.

Ladbrokes International Stakes betting: Evens Bosra Sham, 2-1 Singspiel, 5-1 Benny The Dip, 7-1 Desert King, 25-1 Bijou D'Inde.