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Charlie Hills’ yard has been quiet of late, but he does have a 26 per cent strike rate at Newcastle and it’s worth taking a chance on FLEETING PRINCE. He was fourth in the Group 3 Pavilion Stakes last season and has seen his mark rise to 101 from 90 on the back of some decent handicap runs too.
Newcastle is a stiff enough 6-furlong test, so that fact that he stays 7 furlongs is a big plus. His third behind Double or Bubble in a Newmarket handicap in April reads well now as Beat Le Bon and Riot were behind him that day and both performed really well at Royal Ascot.
Cachet sets the standard with her win over the Rowley Mile and a very creditable effort when fifth in the Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot. NAJAT looks to have loads of ability though based on her Thirsk win a couple of weeks ago when she was heavily backed, she travelled strongly there and scooted away to win her race impressively when asked.
She created a very good impression despite still looking a little green in the closing stages and is open to all sorts of improvement.
Khuzaam is the highest-rated in the filed but needs to prove he’s as effective at 7 furlongs as he is over 6 furlongs. DILIGENT HARRY has a bit to prove on ratings, but does get the 7lbs allowance for three-year-olds.
He is three from four this season and was unlucky when beaten at Lingfield by Wokingham winner Rohaan (off 122) in a very fast time. He missed the Commonwealth Cup due to the ground, but wouldn’t have been out of place in it judged on his performance on All Weather Trials day at Lingfield when bolting up.
The Northumberland Vase is the consolation race for those that didn’t get into the Plate later on the card and BELLATRIXSA looks an interesting contender for Venetia Williams. Better known as a jumps trainer, Williams has saddled just eight runners on the Flat in five years, but did win the Chester Plate with Green Book in May.
Bellatrixsa was previously trained by Michael Dods and bolted up over 2m at this track on her last start for him. She’s rated 124 over hurdles and could go higher when tackling handicaps in the future. Still unexposed on the Flat, Conor Beasley rides her and he rode her in four of her five starts when trained by Dods.
Kinross got a 3lbs penalty for his Haydock win last time under Frankie Dettori but I suspect he may want an ease in the ground and could struggle to confirm the form with Glorious Journey, who was third that day. His recent form figures might not inspire too much confidence, but I’ll take a chance on THE LIR JET for Michael Bell and Oisin Murphy.
He’s been third to Chindit in the Greenham Stakes (beaten half a length) and last season was fifth in the Middle Park Stakes before running seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. He missed the break in the Commonwealth Cup last time at Royal Ascot and was then always going to struggle especially on heavy ground.
He won the Norfolk Stakes last season and then chased Lucky Vega home in the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh too Back on good ground and stepped up to 7 furlongs, he can out-run his odds in a race where there’s no real stand-out contender.
Trueshan faces a tough task off a rating of 118 and top-weight in the feature race in the UK even with Alan King putting a 5lbs claimer on board. I prefer the look of RAJINSKY for the Tom Dascombe yard, who are in great form with a 26 per cent strike rate in the last two weeks.
He was only seventh in this last year off 86, but has won on the tapeta surface at Wolverhampton before and over 2m at Ripon two runs ago before being caught close home over the same trip at Haydock on heavy ground. He looks to have improved and can get competitive if he gets well positioned early on.
13:45 Newcastle – Fleeting Prince
14:05 Newmarket – Najat
14:20 Newcastle – Diligent Harry
14:40 Newmarket – Roberto Escobar
14:55 Newcastle – Bellatrixsa
15:15 Newmarket – The Lir Jet
15:30 Newcastle – Rajinsky
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