An exclusive preview of September's top race meetings

Summer may be almost over, but there is still plenty to look forward to on the Flat - not to mention the joyous sight of the Jumps season galloping into view. September offers a little of something for everyone, with a diverse - but still top-class - month of racing.

It is also a month in which the north takes centre stage. Harry Angel kicks off the action with a return to Haydock - where he is two from two - in the six furlong 32Red Sprint Cup, but faces stiff competition from fellow Godolphin challenger Blue Point. The 2017 winner could also line up against an intriguing contender in Clemmie, a sister to Guineas hero Churchill who has failed to score over a mile this season.

Just a few days later the spotlight swings over the Pennines and is firmly focused on Doncaster, home of the world's oldest Classic - and the last of the season - the St Leger. First run over two miles in 1776, nowadays the 1m6½f race across the Town Moor remains one of the calendar's biggest stamina tests, especially at the end of a long season.

Current favourite Kew Gardens made his 2018 debut on the Rowley Mile way back in April, with no fewer than six appearances so far this season, including a victory in the Queen's Vase at Royal Ascot over 1m6f. While a venture across the Channel to land the Grand Prix de Paris may not be the usual preparation for a Leger contender, his trainer Aidan O'Brien knows what it takes to land the race having done so five times before - including with fellow Longchamp winner Scorpion.

Of course, the race is not necessarily there for the taking by Ballydoyle, with impressive York winner Lah Ti Dar, Great Voltigeur scorer Old Persian and Derby runner-up Dee Ex Bee among other likely contenders. The former now looks likely to swerve the St Leger with the Arc being firmly on the radar.

From sprinters to stayers and finally on to two-year-olds. September offers a chance for next year's stars to show off a touch of their sparkle, first in Newbury's Mill Reef Stakes, then in Newmarket's Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes and Middle Park Stakes, won by Clemmie and July Cup hero U S Navy Flag respectively last year.

Throw in a pair of valuable heritage handicaps - the Ayr Gold Cup followed by Newmarket's Cambridgeshire - and it's clear this Flat season will be going out with a bang.

by The Racing Post's Katherine Fidler at Rewards4Racing

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