4.40pm Newbury Tips & Betting Preview 21/04/2017

An exciting handicap is in prospect as they head to post for the penultimate race of the day at newbury in April, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.

IN SUMMARY: Double Up comes into the race on the back of a breathing op and has good first time up figures so should be dangerous, but not as much as LADY MACAPA. A progressive sort for William Haggas last season, she won a good race at Goodwood on her penultimate start and wasn’t beaten all that far in the Wentworth Stakes on her latest start despite being last. She’s changed yards now to the in form Clive Cox team and if resuming her improvement, a mark of 97 should be no barrier to another big run.

1 MIRZA – Won this back in 2012 on reappearance, but that was five years ago now and this looks a tough task for a horse whose now in the veteran stage of his career. He was last seen in October and he was in good form, winning at Leicester off a 3lb lower mark on his penultimate start. He has never been able to conquer a mark this high however in his entire career and it seems a very big ask for him to do so at the age of ten against some younger legs. Place claims but looks very vulnerable for win purposes.

2 DUKE OF FIRENZE – Eight year old who proved last season he retains plenty of ability, finshiing second in a big field handicap at York in August before finishing sixth in the Prix de l’Abaye de Longchamp in October at Chantilly, a Group 1 contest. Ended last season on a low at Musselburgh but conditions are to suit in this and he does have place claims if at his best on reappearance, but a mark of 105 does demand a huge amount and he may just be vulnerable.

3 POLYE VINNIE – Race fit seven year old who has been campaigned on the all weather of late, winning on his penultimate start at Southwell and perhaps deserved it after a very long time between drinks. He was well beaten at Lingfield in February when last seen off his higher mark though and he has never won after more than a 32 day break. He needs more and this trip may well be sharp enough after a short break, others preferred.

4 DOUBLE UP – Ran very well for the majority of last season for Roger Varian, with perhaps his best effort when forth at Doncaster in the Portland Handicap back in September off a 2lb higher mark. He finished midfield in subsequent runs which has kept in mark interesting and he’s had a breathing operation since his last run at Nottingham in November. He has form figures of 113 on his first time up runs and all signs points to a big run under Silvesre De Sousa.

5 BOWSON FRED – Fit from racing on the all weather during the summer, running near enough at his best on two of his last three runs. He had every chance but was unable to get by when second at Lingfield last month and has been raised a pound as a result. Conditions should be fine in this and he is still technically well weighted on the best of his form, so he should have his part to play for a yard and jockey that are in blistering form at present. Respected.

6 SOIE D’LEAU – Five year old who was looking progressive towards the end of last season, winning a big field handicap at Doncaster in October to round off a season in which he won three races in total. Today’s conditions will suit and we likely still haven’t seen the best of him yet for Kristin Stubbs, so if he returns at his peak he may well be capable of brushing aside a 3lb rise to put up another brave effort under Tony Hamilton.

7 SIR ROBERT CHEVAL – Very inconsistent sort who ran well in some good quality handicaps last summer for Robert Cowell, finishing third at Ascot three starts ago in a very competitive looking race. He did however end last season on a low with two poor efforts, but he he interesting dropped back in trip on seasonal debut as he looks likely to have the raw speed for the minimum distance. A mark of 97 isn’t harsh based on his peak efforts last season and he needs considering.

8 LADY MACAPA – Looked to be an improver for William Knight last season, winning on her penultimate start at Goodwood in October when responding well for pressure to make all in good style. She had improved so much so that she was pitched into listed class action on her latest start, finishing seventh in the Wentworth Stakes at Doncaster but far from disgraced. She’ll be happier back in handicap company and the change to the inform Clive Cox yard may be just what she needs. Fast ground is a slight question mark but she should be fine and can resume her progress in this.

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