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Lucky Deal drops back in grade and could be a big factor if he can take another step back in the right direction, but preference is for his stablemate ROCHESTER HOUSE, who is on a roll again after back-to-back wins at Ascot and Lingfield and is only 1lb higher than last time. The other one on the shortlist is Solo Saxophone, who made it 4-8 for Ben Haslam when winning a match at Newmarket last time and still has scope for further progress on the Flat.
The very well-related Duty Of Care was an eyecatching third at Kempton on his recent debut and should know much more this time. He’s strongly respected but preference is for CAPTAIN COOPER, who made a good start with his clear second over C&D last month and sets a useful standard on that form. The other runners with experience have a lot to find with the selection but newcomer Moorbik has a striking pedigree and needs watching in the market for a yard with a 27% record with 2yos here this year.
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Neither Glasvegas nor ORIENTAL LILLY are copper-bottomed in terms of stamina over 7f, but with a favorable high draw a slight chance is taken on Jim Goldie’s mare, who responded for pressure when going close in a blanket finish over C&D recently. Others to consider in an essentially open contest include the consistent Great Colaci and Tukhoom.
Most of these have something to prove but PALAZZO has done well with a visor applied on Tapeta and Fibresand in his last three starts and still looks feasibly treated off the same mark as for his good second 15 days ago. He gets the vote ahead of Chosen World, who ran into an improver who made all over C&D last time and that was after a couple of close calls at this track. Camacho Man could be dangerous if he gets a good pace back at this trip, while others to consider are Lady Dauphin and Blazing Dreams.
Cases can be made for several of these but it can probably pay to look to the classier runners and the suggestion is URSA MINOR. The John Gosden-trained colt shook off an absence by showing improvement on his AW debut and he can build on that performance this time. Irreverent could be the main danger, with Spiorad another potential player.
Plenty have possibilities but the one that appeals most is LOOK OUT LOUIS, who justified support in good style off a reduced mark over C&D 20 days ago and may well be able to strike again here to make it 2-3 for Julie Camacho. The other last-time-out course winner Be Proud is feared most on his step back up in trip, though Lucky Lodge chased home the selection last time and has each-way claims again. Others who could be dangerous are Shallow Hal, Gloves Lynch and Gunmetal.
C&D winner Rockley Point ran another good race when a close third here last week and is a big player again on his return to 6f. Eldelbar is only 1lb higher than for his close call at Chelmsford and should be in the thick of things again, while triple Tapeta winner Qaaraat has claims on his drop back in grade. However, the vote goes to the lightly raced 3yo ST ANNE’S, who was only beaten a nose by a well treated rival on her handicap debut at Southwell and is open to further progress back at this track.
A modest finale offers the Jessica Macey-trained PHOENIX STAR (nap) the perfect opportunity to land the hat-trick following successive wins on Polytrack at Kempton. He knuckled down to his task (has responded for cheekpieces) on his most recent start and, with previous solid Newcastle form in the book, can make light work of a subsequent 4lb weights rise. Etikaal and Daysaq are the most obvious threats.
The Racing Post’s tips at Newcastle today
- Frank Hickey’s fab 4 for Monday’s racing action
- Timeform’s 3 nifty picks at Newcastle feature a 14/1 fancy
- Timeform have Musselburgh on Monday covered with some cracking fancies