Newcastle is the venue today for the Pitman’s Derby, officially known as the Stobart Rail Northumberland Plate, which takes place on Tapeta for the second time at 3.30.
Just the 20 runners compete for this £90,000+ prize and pride of place in the market goes to Sir Mark’s Flymetothestars at 5-1(tops).
This typically lightly raced 4-y-o warmed up for this with a comfortable victory over CD in May, beating Endless Acres by two lengths off a mark of 91. The latter named has since finished second in the Ascot Stakes off a 5lb higher mark, so the 9lb rise given to the Prescott horse is fully justified. With a two for two record on this surface and more probable improvement to come, our starting point is a win bet on this son of Sea The Stars.
A review of last year’s race will see Seamour look all over the winner until being nabbed by the whirlwind finish of Antiquarium and it is no surprise that Brian Ellison’s charge is back for another go. Just 4lbs higher than in 2016, Seamour reappeared with a good 3rd in a Listed race at York at the end of May, almost a perfect warm up. With the trainer exuding confidence and Ben Curtis vowing to hold on to his mount a little longer this time, it is prudent also to back this to win at the available 6-1.
“But what about a juicy e/w bet?” I hear you cry.
OK, then – Godolphin’s Natural Scenery (3rd favourite) is an unbeaten 2-2 over this course, including a Class 3 handicap at this trip in February. However, just behind her then was the David Simcock trained Hot Beat, staying on well on its first try at the trip. Put away since, until a warm up on turf 3 weeks ago, this Dylan Thomas gelding is 13lbs better off with the filly for just 2 lengths but can be backed at more than twice the price. We complete our portfolio with an e/w tickle on Hot Beat at 20-1.
Not sure there are any miners left in Newcastle to have the day off, but if there are, let’s hope we have helped with their expenses.