1. Circus Maximus (Aidan O’Brien/ Ryan Moore)
Landed the St James’s Palace Stakes and Prix du Moulin last season and took his Group 1 tally to three when winning the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot in June. Has been underwhelming of late and may find this test sharp enough (as he did when fourth last year at Santa Anita) but is entitled to respect on the pick of his form.
2. Kameko (Andrew Balding/ Oisin Murphy)
Won the 2000 Guineas on his reappearance and had excuses for defeats on his next three outings. Proved better than ever when giving weight to high-class older rivals on his return to a mile in the Joel Stakes at Newmarket last time, showing a good attitude to prevail having been briefly outpaced. That form is the best on offer but there’s a slight concern he might find this test too sharp.
3. Lope Y Fernandez (Aidan O’Brien/ Frankie Dettori)
Very smart performer who showed his best form when runner-up in the Prix Jean Prat (over seven furlongs) and third in the Prix Maurice de Gheest (over six and a half furlongs) at Deauville in the summer. Not disgraced over six furlongs the last twice but is worth another go at a mile, for all the trip appeared to stretch him when third to Siskin in the Irish 2000 Guineas.
4. Siskin (Ger Lyons/ Colin Keane)
Won all four starts as a juvenile, including the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes over six furlongs, and proved his stamina for a mile when landing the Irish 2000 Guineas on his reappearance, quickly settling matters with a sharp turn of foot. Showed better form in defeat when third in a good renewal of the Sussex Stakes, but ran his first disappointing race when only fourth in the Prix du Moulin in September. Has been given plenty of time since and promises to be well suited by this sharp mile, so looks a big player.
5. Digital Age (Chade Brown/ Javier Castellano)
Smart performer who produced a career-best effort to win the Grade 1 Turf Classic over nine furlongs at Churchill Downs in September, proving well suited by the strong pace having been held up in the early stages. Arrives here in form but needs to raise his game again.
6. Safe Voyage (John Quinn/ Jason Hart)
Very smart and consistent performer who has proved better than ever this season at the age of seven. Posted an impressive three-and-a-half length success in a Group 2 over seven furlongs at York in August and ran to a similar level when successful in the same grade over a mile at Leopardstown in September. Close-up third in the Group 1 Prix de la Foret last time and should give a good account.
7. Casa Creed (Bill Mott/ Junior Alvarado)
Smart colt who was third in the Fourstardave Handicap at Saratoga in August and produced another good effort when fourth behind Ivar in the Shadwell Turf Mile over this course and distance last month. That was arguably a career-best effort but he will need to take a step forward to make an impact in this company.
8. March To The Arch (Mark Casse/ Tyler Gaffalione)
Won the Grade 2 King Edward Stakes at Woodbine in August and followed that up with a good effort in defeat in the Woodbine Mile, beaten only a length in second. This is tougher, however.
9. One Master (NON-RUNNER)
10. Halladay (Todd Pletcher/ Luis Saez)
Had previously looked exposed but has raised his game this year, showing very smart form to win the Fourstardave Handicap at Saratoga in August, making all to strike in a Grade 1 at the first attempt. More is required here but is on the up and should not be underestimated.
11. Ivar (Paulo Lobo/ Joe Talamo)
Very smart colt who was a dual Grade 1 winner in South America and recorded a first win at the top level in the US when landing the Shadwell Turf Mile over this course and distance last month. Showed a good turn of foot to prevail, quickening well from the rear, and is entitled to respect.
12. Uni (Chad Brown/ Joel Rosario)
Produced a career-best effort when landing this race last year, showing a good turn of foot to make headway on the home turn before quickening into the lead in the final 100 yards. Was below par earlier this year but bounced back to form to win the First Lady Stakes over this course and distance for the second year in a row. That victory last month should have left her spot on for this and she is a big player, though a wide draw is a potential issue.
13. Factor This (Brad Cox/ Florent Geroux)
Has been in excellent form this season, successful on five of his last six outings. Finished three-quarters of a length behind Digital Age in the Turf Classic at Churchill Downs in September but put up a very smart performance when landing a Grade 2 at Pimlico last month by two and three-quarter lengths. Needs to take another step forward.
14. Raging Bull (Chad Brown/ Jose Ortiz)
Showed his best form when landing the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile at Santa Anita in May but wasn’t far below that level when third in the Maker’s Mark Mile in July or when runner-up in the Shadwell Turf (both over this course and distance). Entitled to respect.
15. Order of Australia (Aidan O’Brien/ Pierre-Charles Boudot)
Capitalised on the drop in grade when landing a Dundalk minor event over an extended mile and a quarter in September and followed up in similar company over a mile and a half at the Curragh nine days later. Was tailed off when something seemed amiss last time, however, and has plenty to find on form. Also needs to prove his effectiveness at this trip.