A field of nine go to post for the fourth race of the evening at Newbury on Thursday, see our betting tips and the full race preview below.
IN SUMMARY: On To Victory has been running well this season and has to be considered after an eight length victory at Salisbury on his latest start, but this can go to THE GRAND VISIR. He won a maiden at Yarmouth when showing a brilliant attitude and it all came to soon for him when pitched into Listed company on his latest start. A mark of 85 on handicap debut looks lenient and with the headgear likely to spark further improvement, he should be tough to beat for William Haggas. Melting Dew looks a strong each way contender along with Cross Step, who makes his handicap debut.
1 ON TO VICTORY – Deadly consistent this season for Eve Johnson Houghton, with form figures of 2121 and another big effort looks on the cards. He was upped to the 1m 4f trip on his latest start and it reaped dividends and he stormed away from his rivals, winning by eight lengths and as a result he’s up six pounds in the handicap. That looks potentially lenient as he remains unexposed as this distance and he looks set to go very close under Tom Marquand.
2 THE GRAND VISIR – Son of Frankel who won on debut at Yarmouth in May, with the step up into Listed company on his latest start proving too much as he finished last in the Cocked Hat. Headgear goes on and that should spark improvement as he’s still very much unexposed, with the William Haggas team still operating at a good strike rate at present. Conditions will suit and he should take some stopping if back to his debut form.
3 CROSS STEP – Improving commodity for Charlie Appleby who broke his maiden at the third attempt when winning at Lingfield in May, his first attempt at the 1m 3f distance. He starts off in handicaps off a mark of 85 and if continuing this progressive curve up in trip, it’s hard to not see him reaching the frame with Adam Kirby taking the ride for Godolphin. Conditions will be fine and he has to be considered a danger.
4 HARLOW – Won on debut at Newcastle in March and although he was a good third on handicap debut at Chelmsford, the switch to turf and a rise to the 1m 2f trip resulted in him being a well beaten eighth at Newmarket. He has a huge amount to prove on that basis and although the return of the hood should help, it’s hard to know whether he will stay this trip strongly. Others have far more pressing claims.
5 MELTING DEW – Won a handicap on his penultimate start at Chelmsford and a step up to the 1m 3f trip on his latest start almost made him complete the hat-trick for Sir Michael Stoute. He was doing his best work late on so this step up in trip should suit him, with Ryan Moore now taking over the ride. Conditions will be fine and he remains unexposed after only five runs, so he should make his presence felt and has to be respected.
6 SEE OF ROME – Got off the mark at the fifth attempt when winning on handicap debut at Salisbury eight days ago, taking the prize by five lengths after rallying bravely at the furlong pole. That effort gave a clear indication that the 1m 4f trip would suit and a six pound penalty looks unlikely to stop him from hitting the frame once again for Richard Hughes. Shane Kelly takes the ride and he’s another to consider for each way money.
7 SPECIAL RELATION – Finished second on three of his first four runs for Hughie Morrison, but he came alive on his handicap debut at Pontefract when last seen. He was upped from the mile to the 1m 4f distance, clearing away to win by two lengths and he has a five pound penalty to contend with on this occasion. He should have more to offer in time but this is clearly a tougher race and he looks set for place claims only on this occasion under Jim Crowley.
8 DUKE OF BRONTE – Won his maiden at the third attempt at the mile trip but a step up to the 1m 2f and 1m 4f trips the last twice have failed to bring about any improvement. He ran on strongly towards the finish on his latest start at Goodwood without ever looking threatening and more is needed off two pound lower if he’s to threaten. Possible there is more to come from him in time but he’s best watched on this occasion in a tough race.
9 ROSARNO – Ran his best race yet with the addition of the blinkers at Sandown back in June, still looking one paced towards the finish and around two lengths behind On To Victory. On that evidence is more is needed and although that is entirely possible after only four runs, others to make more appeal and he’s playing for places only on this occasion, with a turnaround with On To Victory looking very unlikely.