Northumberland Plate 2018: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide

The Northumberland Plate takes centre stage at Newcastle on Saturday
The Northumberland Plate takes centre stage at Newcastle on Saturday

Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to Saturday's Northumberland Plate at Newcastle, and pick out their 1-2-3...

"...although hit with a hefty rise, there's still plenty of improvement in him..."

Timeform on Withhold

1. HIGHER POWER (James Fanshawe/Tom Queally)
Smart performer who stepped up on his reappearance when second in minor event at Chelmsford last time. Just 1 lb higher than when landing this race (by half a length from Natural Scenery) last year, so has to be respected.

2. TIME TO STUDY (Mark Johnston/P. J. McDonald)
Ran respectably in first-time blinkers when three and a half lengths fourth to Marmelo in listed race at York last time. Looks high enough in the weights now back in a handicap, however, 6 lb higher than when second at Musselburgh on his return.

3. NAKEETA (Iain Jardine/Callum Rodriguez)
Won Ebor at York (by head from Flymetothestars) in 2017, and not seen to best effect after six months off when tenth in Chester Cup last time, having hopeless task from position. Others look better treated here, though.

4. PRINCE OF ARRAN (Charlie Fellowes/Adam McNamara)
Recorded latest win at Meydan in February and ran creditably when one and a quarter lengths third to Call To Mind in Grade 2 at Belmont last time, but been done no favours by the draw here. Others hold more persuasive claims.

5. WATERSMEET (Mark Johnston/Joe Fanning)
Completed hat-trick at Kempton in February and shaped as if still in good form when ninth in Chester Cup last time, not seeing out the trip. Cannot be totally discounted back over more suitable distance here.

6. ON TO VICTORY (Eve Johnson Houghton/Charles Bishop)
Proved better than ever when second in listed race at Nottingham on his return, before shaping as if amiss when well below form in Yorkshire Cup last time. Should be back on his game here and still not fully exposed as a stayer.

7. TOP TUG (Alan King/Graham Lee)
Ran creditably when fifth in Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot eight days ago and still on a fair mark if handling this significantly longer trip (unraced beyond one and three quarter miles on the Flat), but widest draw is not ideal.

8. LORD GEORGE (James Fanshawe/Daniel Muscutt)
Recorded latest win at Kempton in January, and again ran well when second in minor event at Lingfield last time. Plenty to find with the principals on form here, though, 9 lb higher than when fourth in this race 12 months ago.

9. ARCH VILLAIN (Amanda Perrett/Paul Mulrennan)
Well beaten when last seen finishing eighth in listed race at Newmarket and this represents a stiff ask after nine months off (also well held in this race 12 months ago).

10. CLEVER COOKIE (Peter Niven/David Allan)
Popular sort who has now had 15 runs since last win in 2016, though shaped quite well from higher mark in last year's renewal of this race. Well beaten behind Marmelo in listed race at York last time.

11. CURBYOURENTHUSIASM (David Simcock/Oisin Murphy)
Not seen to best effect when last of five in listed race at Goodwood last time, not having run of race (held up in slowly-run affair). Return to longer trip/all-weather should see him in a better light.

12. NATURAL SCENERY (Saeed bin Suroor/Paul Hanagan)
C&D winner who ran respectably when last seen finishing six and a quarter lengths ninth to Vazirabad in Dubai Gold Cup at Meydan in March. Second from 2 lb higher mark last year, so probably been primed for this.

13. SOLDIER IN ACTION (Mark Johnston/Jack Mitchell)
Ran only respectably when 10 lengths seventh to Amazing Red in handicap at Newmarket last time, merely passing beaten rivals late on. More needed to figure here.

14. ISLAND BRAVE (Heather Main/Ben Curtis)
Won three of first four starts this term, including 12f handicap here in March (awarded race after late interference). Return to all-weather in his favour here, but best efforts have come at shorter and probably needs a career best to make his presence felt.

15. WITHHOLD (Roger Charlton/Robert Winston)
Promising sort who produced career best when winning 34-runner Cesarewitch at Newmarket in October, suited by increase in trip. 12 lb higher now and off 8 months, but will be primed for this. Has to be taken seriously.

16. BYRON FLYER (Ian Williams/Fran Berry)
11 runs since last win in 2017, but had excuses when well held behind Amazing Red in handicap at Newmarket last time, hampered after a furlong (rider lost iron briefly). Respected from just 2 lb than when second on penultimate start at Haydock.

17. LAGOSTOVEGAS (Willie Mullins/Leigh Roche)
Proved better than ever in first-time hood when winning 19-runner Ascot Stakes at Royal Ascot 11 days ago, responding well. Would appear to hold solid claims under a penalty if arriving in the same sort of form.

18. AMAZING RED (Ed Dunlop/Jim Crowley)
Won two of five starts so far this year, including when producing career best to land handicap at Newmarket last time, well on top finish. Remains potentially well treated under a penalty and has to enter calculations.

19. SIR CHAUVELIN (Jim Goldie/Daniel Tudhope)
Course winner who ran well when second in Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot eight days ago, never nearer than at the finish. Return to this longer trip in his favour and cannot be ruled out, 1 lb lower than when close-up sixth in this race 12 months ago.

20. CAYIRLI (Seamus Durack/Shane Kelly)
Won handicap at Kempton in April, but went backwards from that when well held in Chester Cup last time and looks up against it here as a result.

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