Top UK trainers John Gosden and William Haggas, have a marvellous strike rate at the north-east riviera with a 42 per cent and 33 per cent strike rate respectively in 2019.
Both men saddled roughly the same number of horses – 33 for Gosden and 36 for Haggas – with ‘Big John’ scoring with 14 of them and Haggas with 12.
Gosden is certainly not afraid to bring a good horse to Newcastle and it was recently revealed that one-time 2,000 Guineas candidate Palace Pier will miss that Classic in favour of a probable run in a 0-100 handicap for three-year-olds at Newcastle on June 6.
Considering the Kingman colt is rated 98 and last year’s Guineas winner Magna Grecia was rated 113, he could be well handicapped! Make a note!
- All the latest racing previews from France, Hong Kong & the USA are just a click away
- Hall of Fame: Punter smashes 8 legged freak acca at odds of 11,539/1.
- Paul Ince: Anyone who judges Troy Deeney & Danny Rose is an idiot
- Paddy’s Rewards Club – Double Rewards! Qualify in May and bank the same for June
Trainers Ben Haslam and Richard Fahey both entered the winner’s enclosure 17 times, but Haslam only had 98 combatants, while Fahey ran 135.
Both North Yorkshire-based handlers started 2020 well before racing was postponed with Fahey upping last year’s strike rate of 13 per cent to 24 per cent courtesy of six successes from 25 runners at the Geordie venue.
Haslam operating at 17 per cent last season is slightly lower at a 13 per cent strike rate – with five victories from 40 contestants.
If what has happened in 2020 already is anything to go by, any representatives from the Antony Brittain, David Barron and Tracy Waggott yards in the opening weeks at Newcastle, deserve the closest scrutiny.
Barron really has cherry picked races at the all weather track, boasting a marvellous strike rate of 31 per cent with four winners from 13 runners. The other pair both boast a healthy 22 per cent strike rate.
A £1 stake on Barron’s baker’s dozen (13) runners would have left punters in clover with a £23 profit.
As far as jockeys go, no pilot gets a finer tune out of a horse on this left-handed mile and three-quarter oval with a mile straight course than Ben Curtis.
Last season the champion all-weather rider struck 23 times here from 102 mounts at a tasty strike rate of 23 per cent.
His win percentage was even more healthy at the beginning of 2020 before racing’s ‘lockdown’ as he brought home 16 winners from 55 rides – twice as many as any other rider – for a 29 per cent strike rate.
Danny Tudhope was Curtis’s main rival for Newcastle top jockey in 2019, riding four fewer winners than the latter, but from only 78 mounts meaning his strike rate was fractionally better at 24 per cent.
Recent From The Horse’s Mouth podcast sensation PJ McDonald and Andrew Mullen also excel on this tapeta surface, both men partnering 18 winners last year.
Before the current campaign shutdown, a trio of pilots, Jason Hart, Barry McHugh and James Sullivan, were establishing themselves as worthy of keeping an eye on here, all registering beautiful strike rates of 17 per cent or higher.
Hart, champion apprentice in 2013, did particularly well finding himself in the winner’s enclosure once in every four rides from 32 mounts.
Newcastle opens the show next Monday and races on four of the first six days.
There’s no doubt many of the names mentioned above will be plundering nice prizes next week and beyond as the seasons gets into gear.