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Newbury Tips: Escape The City likely to return to form on preferred ground

Syndicate Captain TFA has studied the Best Dividend Guaranteed Place 6 at Newbury on Thursday and offered his expert analysis. He’s particularly excited about Escape The City, who he foresees running a big race when back on her preferred ground.


5.40 Newbury

A typically competitive amateur riders handicap to kick off proceedings. I’ve narrowed this down to three and am confident that one of them will place.

I think the value in the race is probably Ragstone View. He was slightly disappointing last time out at Kempton having been held up last after they quickened from the front. Ran well to finish sixth which was as good as he could do.

His jockey has three winners from his last seven rides and the stable are five winners from the last 12 runners. I expect him to bounce back here and probably at a decent price.

Letsbe Avenue is the second selection and I think he looks like he may also represent a little value. He has been in the grip of the handicapper this season but has been running in better races than this. The last time he ran in a class 5 race was over this course and distance last season when he beat Ragstone View. I’m hoping history may repeat itself.

The jockey booking is eye-catching as Simon Walker remains one of the best amateurs around and he could have been on a few of these. Expect him to run well.

My final selection is Itizzit. She is the likely favourite but won well last time and, given how much she dropped in the handicap before that last run, a 6lbs penalty won’t necessarily stop her. I like the fact Serena Brotherton is on board, she should run well.

Place 6 Selections – Ragstone View, Letsbe Avenue, Itizzit


6.10 Newbury

As you will have picked up from my previous blog previews, these races with unraced horses and no form aren’t really my cup of tea. I would generally favour those with experience and, therefore, I’ve gone with the two which possess the best form to date.

Jim ‘n’ Tomic ran a great race last time, splitting three horses who all subsequently ran at Royal Ascot. His form is the best on show here from those that have run and, if he can repeat it, I can’t see him not running well.

Centurion Song ran really well on debut at Windsor when well fancied, finishing fourth. He stayed on nicely from the rear, with the second and third have both winning next time out. His form looks solid in the context of this race.

Place 6 Selections – Jim ‘n’ Tomic, Centurion Song


6.40 Newbury

Another tricky race although I couldn’t help but be impressed at how Special Secret won over course and distance last time and if, he repeats that here, he’ll surely figure.

There is a doubt about whether he can be effective on firm ground but, even with that doubt, it is very difficult to ignore this him.

The other one who won first time out was Sovereign Beauty. Although she was less impressive than Special Secret, she still achieved a great deal in winning at Goodwood and, with normal improvement, you’d expect her to be competitive again here.

Place 6 Selections – Special Secret, Sovereign Beauty


7.15 Newbury

This may only be a ten runner race but it’s a nightmare. I got quite excited when I looked at Match Maker and the form he showed on debut two years ago and if he can repeat that run again, he’ll win this doing handstands.

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He finished third on debut but the winner as well as the second and fourth placed horses that day are all rated much higher than Match Maker’s mark of 80. Assuming Match Maker hasn’t lost too much ability, he could easily make a mockery of this handicap mark. Really interested to see how he is priced up.

The other one that really caught my attention was Escape The City. Assuming she opens at a decent price, it’s likely I’ll be backing her. She was third at Royal Ascot last season off a mark of 80, was fourth at Glorious Goodwood off a mark of 82 and runs here off 74.

It’s a leap of faith but I think we can ignore the last five runs. She needs firm ground and, for those runs, hasn’t had this going. Looking through her form, on firm ground, she’s a different horse.

She won the Silver Cambridgeshire last season and, the more I look at her, the more excited I get. It’s such a shame she runs in such a tough race tonight but it will at least ensure we get a decent price.

Another I like is My Dear Friend. It looks like she could be on a good mark and is clearly improving with racing and with Silvestre De Souza in the plate, it would be no surprise at all to see her run well.

Place 6 Selections – Match Maker, Escape The City, My Dear Friend


7.45 Newbury

There are three who stand out here based on form achieved so far and it will be disappointing if one doesn’t place. Hamish was very impressive last time out at Windsor and, although he has a slight question mark about the ground, he is very difficult to oppose.

High Commissioner is the highest rated in the field with an official mark of 85. He was second to Logician over course and distance two starts back and this run alone makes him very competitive this evening. He disappointed last time but didn’t stay the trip and is likely to run much better here over 10f.

Lastly, Away He Goes was also second to Logician last time in a different race and, given that was his first run, I would expect him to improve for that experience. He has a bit to find to beat High Commissioner based on a literal reading of his Logician form line, however the fact that it was his debut runs gives me hope that he can close the perceived form gap.

Place 6 Selections – Hamish, High Commissioner, Away He Goes


8.20 Newbury

A tricky little race to end the card. There are three that stand out and I’ll perm them.

Anyonecanhaveitall is a likely Johnston 3-year-old stayer who will improve with racing and, although he has been costly to follow so far, we haven’t seen the best of him yet. He will prove better than a mark of 65 and I suspect back on firm ground, he’ll take a step forward tonight.

Tamachan looked very slow when disappointing last time but the step up in trip will help here and I suspect she is also better than her current mark.

The final one is Highland Sky. He is the one who is proven over this trip in the race and is more exposed than the previous two selections. He won a very similar race to this last season off a 3lb lower mark and I expect him to come on massively after his last run.

Place 6 Selections – Anyonecanhaveitall, Tamachan, Highland Sky

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