All the latest gossip ahead of the weekend's action and news from the Cecil, Henderson and Sherwood yards.
Can Richard Hannon snaffle another big two-year-old prize before the season is out? While plenty of attention is focussing upon the Irish runners in Saturday's Racing Post Trophy, don't be surprised if Hannon can scupper them with Van Der Art, a colt of whom Richard Hughes has a very high opinion.
He took a notable scalp when beating Seek Again at Leicester last time (the form of whose Newmarket victory was boosted by Mujazif in midweek) and has worked really well since, booking his place in the line-up in some style.
The Hannon team also particularly fancy their chances with Glean in the Worthington's Whizz-Kidz Stakes (best known as the Horris Hill) at Newbury. This colt has been earmarked for this race for several weeks and the course is expected to suit too, whereas he became a bit unbalanced on the undulations at Newmarket last time out (achieving good form nevertheless).
Another likely winner for the stable is Victrix Ludorum, who has already made a major contribution to the coffers with two sales-race successes, and who deserves her cut at a Listed race in the Radley Stakes.
Paul Hanagan had the choice of going to ride at Doncaster or Newbury, but chose the Berkshire track, which is encouraging for the prospects of Hawaafez. She sidestepped the Champions Day meeting to wait for this race.
Nicky Henderson was on hand to witness another excellent schooling session from Simonsig in the week and the early signs are hugely promising that this brilliant horse will make the grade as a steeplechaser.
Henderson rewarded pigeon-followers with a winner at Cheltenham last week, but may struggle this weekend, although Vasco Du Ronceray is one to look out for if he lines up at Haydock next week.
His championship rival Paul Nicholls, who will surely have a winner with For Two at Aintree on Sunday, sends young Harry Skelton up to Stratford to ride Ulck Du Lin and the pairing are worth backing getting the hefty weight four-year-olds' weight allowance in the Totepool Handicap Chase.
This horse attracted plenty of headlines last season when being pitched straight into handicap company in Cheltenham's Fred Winter Hurdle, but all of the market attention bemused those closest to the stable as since his arrival from France he had always looked to need fences and a trip.
Having been ante-post favourite only a few days before the race, his price drifted back out towards the off (punters getting a clue when Ruby Walsh jumped off to ride something else for Willie Mullins) and in the end it was no surprise to see him finish down the field.
But he ended the season with a couple of fair efforts over hurdles and this move back to fences (over which he has already been successful in France) and up in distance to two miles five and a half furlongs is very much expected to suit.
Also fancied for the same stable is Wonderful Charm, who runs in the Persian War Novices' Hurdle at Chepstow. This gelding had some smart jumping form in France and was a particularly expensive purchase to join his new owners in Britain.
The services of Frankie McDonald haven't been required again by David Lanigan since he managed to get Progenitor (7.45) beaten on his penultimate start. But Ted Durcan got the colt back on the winning trail subsequently and another victory could well be on the cards in another run-of-the-mill Wolverhampton handicap on the evening programme.
Looking to next week, Jet Away's half-brother Emperical - mentioned here previously - is set to make his debut at Yarmouth on Tuesday and should be supported if the price is right. Like all of the Cecil newcomers, he will come on for the run, but he looked decent when partnered with Tom Queally for a spin on the Al Bahathri gallop on Wednesday morning.
Finally, a hurdling prospect to keep a close eye upon is Puffin Billy, a once-raced bumper winner for Oliver Sherwood. Could he be the horse to bring Sherwood back into the big time?