13 runners have been declared for the Listed race on Friday’s Newbury card. Our betting tips focus on an improving 5yo. Read on for the full race preview.
IN SUMMARY: SO BELOVED has the highest BHA rating but he spoiled his chance by refusing to settle when favourite for his latest outing. That said, in an already depleted field with Certificate, Yuften and Naadirr already withdrawn David O’Meara’s mount looks the likeliest winner here and will be a very tough nut to crack if on song. Aclaim has a bit to find on the figures and is also better known as a sprinter, but he scored when upped to 1m for his latest start and it’s possible he’ll find his niche over 7f.
1 Accession – Back in form on last couple of outings, more recently when staying-on second in Class 2 handicap at Newmarket (7f, good to firm) last month; that performance is short of the required standard here, though, and as a 7yo, he has very limited scope for improvement.
2 Certificate (non runner) – Moves into Listed company after winning two good-quality handicaps last month, more recently when fending off 15 rivals in a valuable contest at Goodwood (7f, good to firm); evidently at the top of his game and makes plenty of appeal.
3 Code Red – Won Listed events in both 2014 and 2015 but is yet to strike form after three starts this season; wasn’t beaten far when last of six in a 7f Goodwood Group 3 last month but needs to build on that performance and others have less to prove.
4 Emell – Finished second in a good-quality Ascot handicap (1m, good to firm) last month and also ran well when fourth in 7f Goodwood Group 3 on next outing; best form gives him a very good each-way shout but his 2-42 strike-rate is very poor for a horse of his ability.
5 Fannaan – Won both 2yo starts in 2014 but raced only once in 2015, finishing down the field in a C&D Group 3 517 days ago, and hasn’t been seen since; in good hands and remains unexposed but it takes a big leap of faith to support him.
6 Naadirr (non runner) – Much better known for his exploits over 6f but won a 7f maiden in 2013 and reached the frame in a 7f Group 2 last year; didn’t get the best of runs when fourth in a 6f Listed race last time and won’t be far away if matching the form of his success in a Doncaster conditions race in July.
7 So Beloved – Looks fully exposed at the age of six but readily won a Listed race at Haydock (7f, good) on his seasonal debut in May and has generally remained in form since then; not at best when favourite for a Goodwood Group 3 last time but still needs to be taken very seriously.
8 Yuften (non runner) – Generally regressive since finishing second in a 1m French Group 1 in 2014 and left Johnny Murtagh after finishing down the field in a 6f Listed event at the Curragh in June; switch to Roger Charlton’s care may revive his fortunes but current ability tricky to gauge.
9 Aclaim – His first six runs were all over 6f but he was evidently suited by the step up to 1m when winning a good-quality handicap at Ascot (good to firm) a fortnight ago; more will be required in this company but, given how strongly he travelled that day, it’s quite possible 7f will be his optimum trip.
10 Cader Prince – Ran right up to his best form when close third in Class 2 handicap at York (7f, good to firm) in July but was down the field at Goodwood a weak later and will need to bounce back with a new career-best performance to have any chance here.
11 Dream Dubai – Yet to add to his 6f AW maiden win in April but is still quite lightly raced and ran about as well as could have been expected when sixth in York Group 3 (7f, good) last month; may be slightly flattered by that form, though, and seems to prefer some underfoot ease.
12 Almashooqa – Runner-up in a 7f Grade 1 contest in South Africa for Mike De Kock last summer but struggled to make an impact in Dubai in early 2016 (four starts) and makes debut for new stable after 197-day absence.
13 Volunteer Point – Enjoyed an excellent winter on Polytrack, culminating with a 7f victory on AW Championship day at Lingfield in March, but wasn’t seen to the same effect back on turf afterwards; soft ground the obvious excuse for latest defeat but others have more pressing claims.
myracing Forecast Prices: 11/4 Certificate, 3/1 So Beloved, 7/1 Naadirr, 10/1 Aclaim, 12/1 Code Red, Fannaan, 14/1 Emell, 16/1 Yuften, 20/1 Accession, Cader Prince, Dream Dubai, Volunteer Point, 33/1 Almashooqa