13:30 Newcastle

Lucky Man was a course and distance winner under Hayley Turner on penultimate run, a race that has produced two subsequent winners, and he wasn’t beaten far despite a tardy start at Southwell when last seen so looks to have a great chance of further success now returning to Newcastle and with Hayley Turner back on board.

Aye Catcher stayed on well to win at Lingfield when last seen and would have to be considered if transferring that form on to the Tapeta surface, while Sassy Rascal also has a Lingfield victory under her belt and should benefit from the step out of novice company so completes the shortlist.


14:35 Newcastle

Spartan Fighter may well end up going off at a short price but for good reason given his last six runs have come here at Newcastle and have produced results of 331121, with the latest coming around three weeks ago when battling well to get back up and beat an 84 rated rival with a next time out winner four lengths back in fourth. He’s only been nudged up 1lbs for that effort so can continue his good run of form here.

Millionaire Waltz is a three time course and distance winner but was at least three lengths behind Spartan Fighter when they met here in early December and will need to improve to reverse that form, meaning the most likely challenger looks to be Sir Maxi who was only a half length behind the winner when last seen, on first run for his new stable, and should be able to remain competitive despite a 2lbs rise for that effort.

SPARTAN FIGHTER (WIN) written by Dean Kilbryde