15:40 Newcastle

Don’t have a play from HQ so will focus on the 2 Newcastle big field handicaps. I was tempted by Birchwood in the Criterion but think the ground is against him and he’s not a great deal bigger than he should be so will swerve. Min Alemerat is nearly going up at a monster price in the Vase but he hasn’t really showed anything of late and blinkers have to all but transform him. It’s a big ask. Gabrial’s Star is going up again, lessons not learned. He tends to want cut on turf and doesn’t always get that, nor has he had things run to suit in a few starts this year. He is back over a more suitable trip than his last 2 starts and the all weather could just be the key to an improved run. He has won on the tapeta at Wolves and has dropped to an attractive mark. Hopefully they go quick enough for his hold up style. Dannyday is going to be difficult to beat but his draw is unappealing and The Cashel Man has obvious claims at a more attractive price. The choice of Jamie Spencer today, he’s unexposed and may just have needed his reappearance when bumping into an unexposed stayer. He’s up 1lb and there should be plenty more to come.
The Cashel Man - 1pt @ 7/1
Gabrials Star - 1pt @ 25/1

16:15 Newcastle

If there’s a horse that is going to run away with the Northumberland Plate then it’s Steve Rogers. Sent off the 7/2 favourite for the Chester Cup last time, he ran no sort of race but looked progressive prior to that and 7/1 is very fair. It’s worth taking, I think he’ll go off a bit shorter given he is 3 from 4 on the all weather including 2 from 2 on tapeta. Also worth chancing is Seismos for a yard back in the winners enclosure. They’d been very quiet but 2 winners in 2 days will have raised spirits and Seismos is a well treated horse on his form of a few years ago. His well being has to be taken on trust and I’m not sure this is his ideal trip. 14 furlongs may just be ideal but he makes his UK handicap debut here and 40/1 is worth a nibble.
Steve Rogers - 1pt @ 15/2
Seismos - 1pt @ 50/1