TASLEET staked his claim for top sprinting honours after streaking clear to win the Duke of York Clipper Logistics Stakes at York today.
Trained by William Haggas, the 14-1 shot had been running over further than six furlongs since his two-year-old days but he showed plenty of pace under Jim Crowley.
Relishing the soft ground, he burst clear to beat last year's winner Magical Memory by two and a half lengths.
Haggas said: "He is a very talented horse. I always thought he wanted fast ground but he seemed to revel in that. He has to run in stakes races now as we have got to make a man of him.
"He has been a relatively sound horse, but he just had a really bad injury (last year) to a hind ankle which took a hell of a long time to clear up.
"I always fancied coming back to six furlongs. He ran over seven on his comeback in the spring when I wanted to run in the Abernant but he had a foot issue.
"This was always the next step and the next step is about another month away. I would think he is unlikely to run again and he will head to the Diamond Jubilee, I've got to try to make him a Group One winner.
"We could look to France, the Prix Maurice de Gheest over six-and-a-half-furlongs will be perfect."
Charlie Hills was thrilled with Magical Memory, who will take the winner on again at Ascot.
"We had a lot of concerns before the race about the ground, but it was always the plan to run him here and Royal Ascot was in the back of our minds," said Hills.
"To go there, we felt we had to run here. His work had been really good this spring, he's got his enthusiasm back after a niggling problem last year."
Whenever Haggas books Ryan Moore, the hint is usually worth taking and that was the case with Battered, who claimed the Conundrum HR Consultancy Handicap.
The three-year-old was sent off the 4-1 favourite and despite slipping coming out of the stalls, he did not lose too much ground and won going away.
"He has won quite easily today in the end, so I should think he will go up a good lump. He will need to be good to go to the next level but we shall see," said Haggas.
"We might give Goodwood a go next Saturday."
Master Carpenter (12-1) recaptured his best form as he bolted up in the Sky Bet First Race Special Handicap.
Winner of the John Smith's Cup in 2015, he has been without a win since then but having dropped in the handicap, Rod Millman's six-year-old took full advantage.
Winning jockey Phil Makin said: "He is such an honest horse, he has probably spent a lot of the time badly handicapped. I spoke to Rod before and he was very confident today with the rain, he likes the track and it felt quite impressive."
Danny Tudhope was glad of the rain as his original mount in the Infinity Tyres Handicap, Out Do, was taken out, allowing him to team up with eventual winner Al Qahwa (25-1).
Declan Carroll has set his sights on the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot with Santry (9-4), who defied a 6lb penalty in the British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes.
* HEAVY rain at York may have dampened a few spirits, but it made the decision about which Oaks Shutter Speed should tackle after she oozed class in the Tattersalls Musidora Stakes.
The extended mile and a quarter took a little more getting than normal, but Shutter Speed is still unbeaten after three races and she will stick to that distance and head to France for the Prix de Diane.
She is favourite for the French Classic at 2-1 with Ladbrokes and 6-4 with Betfair and Paddy Power.
The Shutter Speed team of owner Khalid Abdullah, trainer John Gosden and jockey Frankie Dettori also have a serious contender for the Investec Oaks in Enable, winner of last week's Cheshire Oaks.
Shutter Speed's appearance on the Knavesmire was only confirmed after Gosden had walked the track.
The race played to Shutter Speed's strengths as it was just a steady pace set by Miss Infinity, with Shutter Speed ready to pounce whenever Dettori pressed the button.
Taking up the running fully two furlongs out, she did not quicken up as smartly as she has done previously in the soft ground but the 4-7 favourite was a length and three-quarters too good for Vintage Folly.
"Before racing the ground was in pristine condition, the ground staff have done the most wonderful job," said Gosden.
"It was beautiful grass with great depth to it, but sadly we had a mass amount of rain.
''It was only because it was in great condition before that we decided to run.
''She hated it. It was too soft and she was not happy at all, but she had the class to win.
''She will go to the Prix de Diane which is just over a month's time. It gives her a month to get over the race.
''She is a mile-and-a-quarter filly – this did stretch the stamina today.
''If it went very soft we wouldn't run her, but if it is good, good to soft or fast, we would love it. She is a top of the ground filly. She was always the best of our fillies last year.
''I trained her second dam, Prophecy, to win the Cheveley Park for Prince Khalid. You can straight away see that there is a bundle of speed on the dam's side.
''She has got the scope to get a mile and a quarter, but I wouldn't be running her in any Oaks.''