Tuesday 14 February 2017

4:40 Newcastle Racing Tips (14th February) MAIDEN STAKES (CLASS 5) (3yo)

A Maiden Stakes over 6f on Standard going.

Six three-year-olds take part: three with race experience and a trio of debutantes. 

Decent win prize money for the victor at £5,175.20

Night Shadow looks very unlikely to figure here after two disappointments.

The betting suggests the other five contenders have some chance.

The most experienced horse in the field is John Quinn's Bloomin' Lovely who has raced seven times. This bay daughter of Helmet cost £38,000 when purchased at the yearling sales. She was fancied on debut and far from disgraced when sixth at Beverley, losing by less than five lengths. Thereafter, placed at Chester when 20-1. Her last three starts have been at Newcastle where the last two effort saw this March foal placed. An official rating of 69 doesn't inspire. However, valuable racecourse experience over this sprint distance gives hope especially if the debutantes are limited or ring rusty. 

Richard Fahey is a trainer to respect with his debutantes. Boogie Babe was quite fancied in the betting over course and distance but taking a keen hold done this daughter of Aqlaam few favours. Unsurprisingly, she was soon outpaced to finish sixth behind Ettu who won readily. This home-bred could well leave that racecourse bow behind her although it would bring more confidence if supported in the betting.

Three debutantes. 

Channel Packet hails from Michael Appleby's yard. This handler from Oakham, Rutland, is difficult to assess as he can surprise with the odd talented debutante although the majority of his newcomers tend to go unfancied. This bay colt is a son of Champs Elyees out of a poor mare. Unless substantially backed, I'd take a watching brief. 

The next pair could prove of interest to punters.

The well-named Hitchcock is a bay gelding trained by Kevin Ryan. This son of Equiano is out of an unraced mare. He wasn't the most expensive yearling at £33,000. Mrs Angie Bailey is no stranger to success. A number of sparkling talents including Brando [pictured], Astaire & Bogart. The betting suggests this horse - who was born on Valentine's Day - has some ability. Interesting. 

David Barron is a talented trainer who places his horses well. I always consider those running out of season particularly noteworthy because it is a sign they are fancied to win. This bay gelding is a son of Harbour Watch out of a limited but durable mare who achieved six wins from thirty-three starts, trained by Alan Berry, in the ownership of his father, Jack. The mare, Our Little Secret, won on her final start at Chester, achieving an all-time highest official rating of 79. She was an out-and-out sprinter. 

Batten The Hatches was bought in by the vendor for 25,000G at the yearling sales. Racing in the familiar silks of Harrowgate Bloodstock Ltd & Partner. Definitely, one to figure. If substantially backed it would bring further confidence. 

Conclusion:  Bloomin' Lovely has valuable race experience but not quite good enough to win so far. An official rating of just 69 indicates that if any of the debutantes have ability, they could cause an upset. The betting is usually the best pointer. 

If John Quinn's charge starts favourite, it would a double positive. 

If one of the debutantes sits at the top of the betting, it would ring alarm bells for Bloomin' Lovely. 

Boogie Babe needs to settle after ruining her chance over course and distance. If she is given a fighting chance she will start shortish odds. If weak in the market, I'd take a watching brief. 

The debutantes make most interest: Batten The Hatches & Hitchcock. 

Over sprint distances, horses need to be primed on their first start to win. A slow start would make this very hard work unless a smart campaigner which looks unlikely. 

The market will be informative, especially as detailed, with Bloomin' Lovely. 

I find Kevin Ryan a difficult trainer to assess at times. If really well supported it would bring confidence. The betting will detail the chances of Batten The Hatches. 

I would suggest whichever horse starts favourite will win.