Prolific Group winners Sole Power and Gordon Lord Byron are battling it out for favouritism for Saturday's Betfred Sprint Cup following Aidan O'Brien's decision to withdraw Due Diligence from the Haydock feature.
Along with stablemate Slade Power, Sole Power has been a tremendous money-spinner for the Eddie Lynam yard this season but the recent York winner will only make the trip to the Liverpool venue if the ground is good.
Conditions at the track are currently good to soft, but a warm week is forecast. Were the surface to stay on the soft side, the Meath trainer could run Viztoria which has shown her best form with some 'juice' in the ground.
Sole Power is currently 4/1 joint favourite for the Group 1 contest alongside Gordon Lord Byron which will be bidding to win the race for a second successive year having comprehensively defeated Slade Power in the contest 12 months ago.
O'Brien has confirmed that Due Diligence will not be lining up and while he has left in both Cougar Mountain and Fountain Of Youth, it's looking like that neither will run. However, there will be a strong raiding party as Emma McCutcheon's Maarek and the Tracey Collins-trained Majestic Queen still feature among the 25 possibles.
Encouraged by an improved weather forecast, Clive Cox has supplemented recent Goodwood winner Es Que Love at a cost of £15,600, while the Harry Redknapp-owned Moviesta - which ran well when fourth to Sole Power in the Nunthorpe at York - will represent the Bryan Smart yard.
Elsewhere, Cheltenham Gold Cup and Grand National-winning jockey Jim Culloty has been named as one of the retired riders taking part in the Clipper Logistics Legends Classified Stakes at Doncaster on September 10.