Just the two tips from Tony Calvin on Saturday
Step up to 1m could be masterstroke for 50/1 tip
Some runners of interest at Newbury and Newmarket
Mile trip set to suit 50/1 tip in winnable Group 1
Newbury, 15:35 - Tony's Tip: Jumby E/W @ 50/1
Let's cut straight to the money shot, as a dodgy film director or two may have said in their time.
Back Jumby at 50/1 each way, four places, with the Betfair Sportsbook in the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes at 15:35 at Newbury.
Now, the formbook says he has a mountain to climb, as the second-lowest rated horse in the race (behind only 125/1 poke The Wizard Of Eye) and 12lb off standard-setters My Prospero and Modern Games.
And he has.
Of course, you can make a strong case for all of those at the top end of the market but not necessarily a convincing one at their prices - this race looks wide-open to me, with no stand-out and several potential winners - whereas I think there is big betting mileage in Jumby stepping up to a mile for just the second time in his 20-race career.
The first time he ran over the trip was here back in 2020 when a 2yo (third to Yibir and Megallan in a very warm heat) and it is strange that he hasn't been tried over it again before now.
My case for him pretty much solely rests on his Hungerford Stakes win over 7f here last summer, a race in which he was pouring it on late and won readily. Another furlong and I sensed he would possibly have doubled his winning margin, though his rider was already easing down at the line.
The good time (which stacks up very well against those posted by others in here) backed up the visual impression that the victory in that Group 2 was highly impressive, and I can see this race being run to suit, and decent ground will help him last home.
Well, I say decent ground. The forecast has changed at Newbury on Friday with thundery showers due (maybe 7mm, maybe less, maybe more), but hopefully they won't make too much of a dent in the ground. Saturday looks a drying day anyway if the situation needs rescuing.
I counted seven potential forward-goers in here, so Charles Bishop can bide his time and play his hand late. The horse shaped well over 6f in the Abernant on his return, and I love the punchy call of Eve Johnson Houghton to play her what appears a very winnable Group 1.
Let's hope you kill it, Eve.
Reproduction of last year's run will see him go close
Newbury, 15:35 - Tony's Tip: Chindit E/W @ 20/1
Chindit, third to Baaeed and Real World in this race last season and who won the Greenham here at three, was my second choice at the odds and I will be having a saver on him at 20/1 each way, four places, too.
He would want as little as rain as possible - I really don't want to see a monsoon at Newbury on Friday afternoon - but here is the case for him.
I thought he did it snugly enough on his return at Ascot - it was a Listed race in name only as he was beating horses ranged from 107 to 114 in that five-runner heat - and, on ground he will hopefully love, I think he will go close if reproducing his run in this contest last season, when third to a couple of top horses who went on to finish 1-2 in the Queen Anne afterwards.
He is a bit of an in-and-out performer but he beat Mutasaabeq (admittedly much improved since) in the Summer Mile at Ascot last season and is pretty much three times the price.
Noble Style likely winner and Kemari is of interest
Newbury, 13:50 - No Bet
I don't have a betting opinion in the opener at 13:50 where Noble Style ought to win if at his juvenile best over a trip that should suit, but do you want to be taking a short price about him after a hard race over a trip that stretched him on soft ground in the Guineas a fortnight ago?
Not for me. I am a bit fan of Newmarket winner Shaquille and if he may come into it if Newbury do get a lot of rain throughout Friday.
Newbury, 14:25 - No Bet
Kemari could get an easy lead in the 1m4f Group 3 in the 14:25 and he is interesting at 7/1+ on the exchange as a result, and it is not as if he is out of this if he can return to the form of his length second to Rebel's Romance at Goodwood last season , with the winner going on to land a brace of Group/Grade 1s in Germany and at the Breeders' Cup.
I will stop short of a bet though.
Royal a likely winner but too many unknowns
Newbury, 15:00 - No Bet
The same applies to the 1m2f handicap at 15:00.
As everyone knows this handicap has been the springboard for some serious horses down the years, most recently Bay Bridge, but maybe this isn't such a red-hot renewal this year.
I can fully see why Desert Hero, Exoplanet and Bertinelli are high up in the betting, as they have obvious handicap upside after just three starts, but my idea of the most likely winner is Royal Rhyme, despite him rather showing his hand on soft ground at Newmarket last time - he was stepping up to 1m2f for the first time there - and paying for it with a 10lb rise in the weights.
He deserved it though, given the dominance of that win in a good time from a horse than ran well at York on Thursday, and he is related to some good horses, notably Sharjah Queen.
However, the downside is that he has hardly been missed in the market either, with the Sportsbook going 4/1. And whether he can be as effective on this quicker ground from a potentially problematical draw in 12 puts me off, even at around 11/2 on the exchange.
You almost feel obliged to tip in the race given its pedigree but it is not for me this year. Just a few too many unknowns .
Mutaany has big chance if ground doesn't dry too much
Newmarket, 14:05 - No Bet
Gulmarg looks very solid in the 1m handicap at Newmarket at 14:05 after a good third over course and distance last time, and they may hold on to him a bit longer here, as he actually traded at 1.76 in running that day.
However, I was hoping for a bit bigger than the Sportsbook's 11/2 (they are ducking him, rightly do in my opinion, as he is 8s elsewhere) as I wanted to back him each way. I can't play at the current price.
Newmarket, 14:40 - No Bet
I was going to side with Mutaany in the 6f handicap at 14:40 as he has a nice, lightly-raced profile, he ran well on his return and he is bred to be a lot better than his handicap of 85 as he is a brother to the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup winner Eqtidaar and Group 2 winner/Group 1-placed Massaat. And Charlie Hills is in red-hot form.
Indeed, I did have a little bit on him at 10s on Thursday (he is currently 9/1 with the Sportsbook).
However, he wouldn't want the ground to dry out too much further as his best form has come with cut to date, and my record in sprint handicaps strongly suggests I should be giving them a swerve anyway.
And Quinault emerged as a big danger to all when winning here on Thursday night, even under his penalty.
By the way, it is currently good at Newmarket and it could even ride on the fast side by race-time, as there is only minimal rain due on Friday and Saturday looks a day for shades.
Montassib a very worthy market leader
Newmarket, 15:50 - No Bet
There was some confusion over whether ITV were showing the 15:15 or the 15:50 - the email that ITV sent around on Thursday afternoon didn't clarify the situation either, as they transposed the race names, further muddying the picture - and they are both 7f handicaps too, sponsored by Aspall.
It looks like it is the 15:15 - it could be that Worldpool had a word and wanted the 14-runner contest on the box - a race in which Berkshire Phantom looked half-interesting at a double-figure price, and Powerdress will have her supporters off a mark of 88 after her sights considerably lowered after a run in the Guineas.
However, the only horse I fancy from a betting perspective in either race is Montassib in the Racing TV-only 15:50 - or fancied, I should have said, even if he surely has a huge chance.
He didn't enjoy the best of luck in some good class handicaps on occasions last season, signing off with a ½ length second to Wanees at Haydock, after which the handicapper only raised him 1lb.
You can stick a line through his reappearance in the Lincoln as he was one of many who didn't handle the heavy ground there (he may have also resented the tongue-tie he wore that day as they left it off last time) and he surely would have gone close if seeing daylight a touch earlier at Haydock last time.
As it was, he stormed home to be beaten just 2 lengths, having been checked in his run approaching the final furlong, and he may have won in another 100 yards, so strongly was he finishing, though the winner did win a touch snugly, to be fair. The handicapper played ball by leaving him on the same mark, too.
If he gets the breaks here, then I would be pretty confident he can reel in likely front-runner The Gatekeeper, whose forward-going style will hopefully give the selection the good tow into the race he needs over this 7f trip.
I don't normally bet at these prices but I did have a nibble on Thursday at 3/1+. However, he has shortened into 5/2 with the Sportsbook, so I am going to leave him alone for tipping purposes now. It's a fair price though, and may get shorter.