Friday Selections: 5th May 2023

One from three, Totnes saved the day with a late charge to win ultimately with authority, though. The wide draw was a concern and he had to come from last to first on the wide outside. Thankfully he had too much in hand. He was well backed as well (6/4 SP).

Far From A Ruby was disappointing. However, I wouldn’t lose faith. Perhaps she was too keen, perhaps the ride was too aggressive, as the sectionals look fast, if they can be believed. She’ll have her day in the sun sooner rather than later.

Compere ran well but didn’t have any excuses. Perhaps the race was more competitive as I gave it credit. In any case, he wasn’t quite good enough.

We’re in May, a couple of days away from the first Classic of the season. Yet, here I am having another three selections for Newcastle on Friday after those two runners at Chelmsford on Thursday.


7.55 Newcastle: Class 5 Handicap, 6f

Intriguing contest largely due to some unexposed horses that could improve for experience and their handicap debut.

More exposed than most here but still open to improvement off her current mark is Bella Kopella. She caught the eye the last time over 7 furlongs here at Newcastle:

She was early up with the pace, before tracking the leader who set a solid pace. She made stylish progress from over 2f out as she moved forward and travelled like the winner. Perhaps she did too much in the middle part of the race as she tired badly in the final furlong.

The form of the race is up for debate, however, she won really well four weeks earlier over the same CD, also travelling powerfully in the middle of the race.

Nonetheless, she finished not particularly strongly that day either. Both times off a hot pace, though. She has shown good cruising speed, hence the drop to 6 furlongs looks possibly ideal, especially here at Newcastle.

Bella Kopella was progressive as a juvenile, is clearly an experienced filly at this stage, but looks still open to more improvement, as she ran to a 59 speed rating lto when she won in March, in a race that worked out really well in the meantime.

10pt win – Bella Kopella @ 15/2


8.25 Newcastle: Class 6 Handicap, 6f

Macho Pride is a standout in this field. He looks seriously well handicapped on his second run for the Ruth Carr yard.

He ran with plenty of credit on the All-Weather during the winter months and showed positive signs the last two runs as well. Soft ground was never to suit when last seen, but there as well as prior over this CD he showed excellent early speed and enthusiasm for the game.

Especially two back, his 8th place finish was a much better run than the bare form may suggest. It was strong race, and as a reference performance for his form it’s really promising.

He drops into a much easier race here on the sand now and showed also on the clock some solid performances in the not too distance past. Last season when he ran three times to speed ratings of 57+, in December he ran to 56 and February 54, both times over 6 furlongs at Newcastle.

It’s pretty obvious that he is seriously well weighted off 54 now, if in peak form, which I imagine his last two runs have helped to get him ready for.

10pts win – Macho Pride @ 9/1


9.00 Newcastle: Class 6 Handicap, 5f

Beneficiary looks so ready and has found the perfect race, I firmly believe. He ran a massive race in February over 6 furlongs at Newcastle, when he came to my attention, and he should really benefit from the drop to the minimum trip.

Back then he moved forward, pushed a good pace as part of a duo initially, before he grabbed the lead 2f out, still ahead approaching final furlong but then tired rapidly.

It was a strong performance in a very strong race and he followed up with another strong run from the front when last seen. He tends to be keen and go off to hard over 6 furlongs, hence the drop to 5f will be helpful.

He drops into a much easier race here and has been given additional help from the handicapper as well. He ran to a 63 speed rating in January, so a mark off 60 offers a great chance.

The fact there is plenty of pace here should be a bonus. He doesn’t have to lead, but rather can follow the front-runners and wait for the right moment to kick on as he has stamina for an additional furlong.

10pts win – Beneficiary @ 7/2

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