Thursday, 25th Jun 2020
The first of two Group 3 contests on Northumberland Plate day at Newcastle this Saturday is the 6f Chipchase Stakes (13:50). Having impressed when scoring on seasonal reappearance, Mubakker is strongly fancied to take a step up in class in his stride to follow-up.
This Sir Michael Stoute trained colt is a lightly-raced four-year-old that has won three of his five starts.
He looked a sprinter to keep onside when bolting up by eight lengths at Kempton on his first outing last season, showing a potent turn of foot to win as he liked.
Mubakker then failed to get competitive on his final start of the campaign when bogged down in the mud, and seventh of 10 to Tinto at Ascot and sent off a well-backed 3/1 favourite.
The son of Speightstown then showed that running to be all wrong when making a winning return to action in a class 2 handicap over this course and distance at the beginning of the month.
After being held-up at the rear, Mubbaker made smooth headway two out to challenge at the furlong marker. When asked to go and put the race to bed by Dane O’Neill, he quickened smartly to easily account for Glem Shield by just under three lengths.
The runner-up and third home Gabrial The Wire have both since run decent races in competitive affairs at Royal Ascot, so that gives the form a solid look.
Judged by the way in which Mubbaker got the job done he looks one to keep firmly onside. At 11/4 with Coral, he is thus taken to land this en route to even better things
The Kevin Ryan trained Major Jumbo is a tough and consistent sort that has some strong form in the book, so is feared most.
This six-year-old has won twice and been placed once in three starts on the Tapeta surface. He posted a string of decent efforts at the start of last season, finishing a two-length third to Mabs Cross in a Group 3 at Newmarket before chasing home Invincible Army in a Group 2 at York.
Major Jumbo was also far from disgraced when a 6 1/4 lengths ninth of 12 to Ten Sovereigns in the Group 1 July Cup at Newmarket, after which he gained a deserved success in a Listed affair at Chester.
The form of those races is strong in relation to the Chipchase Stakes. Major Jumbo comes into it on the back of a highly promising return to action when a staying on 1 1/2 lengths third to Far Above in the Group 3 Palace House Stakes.
He was forced to race wide that day, so is fancied to turn the tables on the runner-up Judicial who had the race run to suit.
That spin should also have blown away the cobwebs and put the son of Zebedee spot on for this. So, at 7/1 with Betfred, Major Jumbo appeals most from an each-way betting perspective.
In the 1m 2f Group 3 Hopping Fillies’ Stakes (15:00), Aloe Vera looks to hold outstanding claims of maintaining her unbeaten record.
This Ralph Beckett trained four-year-old looked a smart prospect when making a winning debut in a 16-runner maiden at Chepstow 13 months ago, being slowly way before slicing through the pack three from home to beat Maiden Castle by a neck.
That view was confirmed when Aloe Vera landed the Listed 1m 2f Height Of Fashion Stakes at Goodwood in impressive fashion.
The daughter of Invincible Spirit again came from off the pace, before staying on strongly to forge clear and beat Shambolic, who had some fair forn to her name going into the contest, by three lengths.
That most taking success has earned Aloe Vera an official rating of 103 which makes her the joint-top rated in the six-runner line-up.
Given that she is far less exposed than her five rivals and open to bags more progression, it very much makes her the one to be on here.
Odds of 13/8 with William Hill about her completing the hat-trick, therefore, look fully justified in a weak renewal of the Hoppings Fillies’ Stakes.
Look Around, a 100/30 shot with Betfair, appears to be the only conceivable danger to Aloe Vera on form in what looks a match on paper between them.
Trained by Andrew Balding, this four-year-old daughter of Classic winner Kingman shaped well in her first two starts last season.
In the first of those over 7f at Newmarket, Look Around finished off strongly to be nearest at the finish and a 3 1/4 lengths fourth of 11 to Qabala in the Group 3 Nell Gwyn Stakes.
The run earned her a crack at the 1000 Guineas at headquarters and she was far from disgraced in finishing a 6 1/2 lengths ninth of 15 to Hermosa in the fillies’ Classic.
Look Around went on to be runner-up in a Listed affair at Ascot before finishing a solid third to Lavender’s Blue in a Group 3 at Newmarket.
Those efforts make her a player in this, but Look Around comes into the race having run a shocker at Newbury two weeks ago when a well-beaten sixth of eight to Century Dream in the Group 3 Diomed Stakes. She needs to bounce back, then.