Nominations are now out for the Newcastle Newmarket Handicap 2015 running in Sydney next Wednesday with a host of nice middle-distance sprinters entered for the popular mid-week clash.
This year’s $125,000 Group 3 Newcastle Newmarket Handicap (1400m), which runs on the same day as the Provincial Championships Qualifier, has attracted 17 early entries including an in-form duo from the Godolphin stables.
Trainer John O’Shea has nominated for his last start winners It’s Somewhat and San Diego, the latter also accepted to run in the $175,000 Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens this Saturday.
Smart English import It’s Somewhat only debuted down under on February 28 at Warwick Farm on Chipping Norton Stakes Day, the Dyanformer four-year-old instantly catching the eye with a victory over Rudy in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m).
Group 1 placed last July in the UK’s Coral-Eclipse Stakes (2000m), the gelding should enjoy the step up to 1400m for Newcastle’s Newmarket Handicap – a distance he has a nice record of two wins and a second from four starts over.
San Diego is another nice four-year-old coming off a Sydney win having won a Benchmark 85 over 1350m on February 21 at Rosehill.
He’s down to run, as mentioned, in the Ajax Stakes but could back-up on Wednesday depending on how he performs this weekend.
Also coming off a top three run in the Liverpool City Cup along with the winner It’s Somewhat is the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained mare Gypsy Diamond.
The four-year-old daughter of Not A Single Doubt ran an eye-catching third first-up when beaten just over a length and a half, and on Wednesday if accepted will be out to break her second-up hoodoo.
She’s had four previous second-up starts, but is yet to finish in the money, something connections hope to change as she heads towards a possible run in the $3 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 4.
Gypsy Diamond though is a $67 roughie in the pre-field Doncaster Mile odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
It’s Somewhat is at a much shorter $13 in the markets led by Japan’s World Ace ($7) and this Saturday’s odds-on favourite to win the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) First Seal ($8).
San Diego is at $26, while the only other notable 2015 Doncaster Mile hope nominated for the Newcastle Newmarket Handicap is the Gerald Ryan-trained Red Excitement ($51), out to improve on a Liverpool City Cup eighth, who is also down to run in the Ajax Stakes on Coolmore Classic Day.
Team Snowden meanwhile also have Gypsy Diamond’s stablemate Snippet’s Land in the mix next week, the four-year-old gelding coming off a win in the Listed National Sprint (1400m) at Canberra last Sunday.
National Sprint runner-up Mighty Lucky, prepared at Gosford by Fred Cowell, is another Newcastle Newmarket Handicap nominee.
The Casino Prince five-year-old has a great Newcastle record (6-2-3-1) and is also well-performed over the distance (8-2-2-0) so won’t be without his admirers in the Ladbrokes.com.au markets if accepted.
Along with Ajax Stakes duo San Diego and Red Excitement there are two other Saturday Sydney acceptors nominated for Newcastle’s Group 3 four days later with Liverpool City Cup fourth placegetter Malavio in the Ajax and the Gai Waterhouse-trained Countryman accepted as the 61kg top weight in Rosehill Race 5.
Last year’s Newcastle Newmarket Handicap winner was the Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes-trained Mecir, and this year Team Hawkes have nominated for Snitzel four-year-old Le Cordon Blue.
The gelding has a super consistent record so far with three wins and two thirds from just six starts, the latest of which was a fourth to Press Report in a Benchmark 80 over the 1200m at Warwick Farm late last month.
See below for the full Newcastle Newmarket Handicap 2015 nominations before the field is out early next week.
In the meantime head over to Ladbrokes.com.au for all the ace Sydney and Melbourne racing action this weekend, three Group 1s happening around the country including Flemington’s Australian Cup where you can access Best Tote or SP + 20% markets at Ladbrokes!
2015 Newcastle Newmarket Handicap Nominations
Newcastle Racecourse – 18/03/2015
|1||CANNY BALLAD||John P Thompson||–|
|3||EXCITED PRINCE||Jason Coyle||72|
|4||FINE BUBBLES||Kris Lees||91|
|5||GYPSY DIAMOND||Peter & Paul Snowden||99|
|6||IT’S SOMEWHAT (USA)||John O’Shea||104|
|7||LASER HAWK||Joseph Pride||105|
|8||LE CORDON BLEU||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||77|
|10||MIGHTY LUCKY||Fred Cowell||92|
|11||NOTHING LIKE LUCA||Jim Litt||79|
|12||PAEDEROS (FR)||David Payne||79|
|13||RED EXCITEMENT||Gerald Ryan||101|
|14||SAN DIEGO||John O’Shea||82|
|15||SCORPIO QUEEN||Kris Lees||91|
|16||SNIPPETS LAND||Peter & Paul Snowden||86|