THE WEEK AHEAD: MAIN EVENTS

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TODAY

Cycling: Second stage of the Tour de France, from Challans to Saint-Nazaire. The great race still has much to do to regain its place in the heart of the French nation after last year's doping scandals, which have plagued the sport ever since. It has been clean so far but there is much pedalling to do and, hopefully, no peddling to come.

TOMORROW

Racing: First day of the July meeting at Newmarket and Robert Sangster's Shining Hour, who floored Mick Channon's hot favourite Rowaasi in the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, heads 14 entries for the prestigious Cherry Hinton Stakes.

WEDNESDAY

Cricket: Fourth round of the NatWest Trophy. Most of the minor sides went out in the third round but the Netherlands made it into the final 16 and have a home tie against Kent as their reward.

Golf: The Standard Life, Loch Lomond. Because qualifying for next week's Open at Carnoustie begins on Sunday, this tournament begins, unusually, on a Wednesday. Among the big names taking part are Billy Mayfair and Colin Montgomerie. One who can't be bothered is the colourful American, John Daly, who invariably alternates between scoring 60-something and 80-something and who feels that he isn't playing well enough. He's probably right.

Racing: The Falmouth Stakes - the highlight of Newmarket's second day, with the return of Cape Verdi. The brilliant Godolphin filly makes her first appearance since last year's Derby, after which she was sidelined with a hairline fracture of her hind pastern. Connections are anxious to see whether she has retained the flair that saw her secure last year's 1,000 Guineas. Impressive Royal Ascot performer Balisada is likely to prove tough opposition.

Equestrianism: The Royal International Horse Show gets under way at Hickstead. Over five days it features the British Grand Prix, the Nations Cup, the Queen Elizabeth II Cup for women on Saturday and the King George V Gold Cup for men on Sunday.

THURSDAY

Athletics: Britain has around 150 competitors in the World Student Games in Palma, Majorca. The track and field events begin today and run until Tuesday.

Racing: The July Cup is the feature race at Newmarket and Jeremy Noseda's 1,000 Guineas runner-up, Wannabe Grand, will take all the beating over the six-furlong trip. Godolphin rely on Fa-Eq in the pounds 165,000 contest and Aidan O'Brien, the young training genius of Ballydoyle, has several horses entered.

SATURDAY

Racing: All eyes will be on the Magnet Cup at York where Killer Instinct, one of the great talking horses of recent years, is due to reappear. This is the horse which was backed to win the Derby before it had ever seen a racecourse and which has disappointed in most of its runs despite continued support based on allegedly dazzling performances on the home gallops. This is scheduled to be its last race in this country before going to perform in the United States.

SUNDAY

Motor racing: The British Grand Prix at Silverstone. Confusing one, this, but here goes: Damon Hill recently announced that this would be his final season, then hinted that this would be his final race, then hinted strongly that after last month's disappointing drive in France, he would not drive again. Then he announced that the British Grand Prix would, indeed, be his farewell race, only to follow that with a suggestion that he may go on until the end of the season. Got it? Good. In the race itself, the usual suspects from McLaren and Ferrari are likely to dominate unless the weather takes a hand.

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