Northumberland Plate Handicap Betting Tips

Northumberland Plate Handicap Betting Tips

The £150,000 Northumberland Plate is a race of no little historical significance.

There are various stories brewing within. Rajinsky looks to go two better than last year with up-and-coming star Harry Davies on board.

Trueshan attempts to defy a rating of 120 and a monster weight of 10st8lbs, while Ben Robinson is looking to become the first jockey since Kevin Darley in 2000 to win the race back-to-back.

Robinson rides for his boss Brian Ellison in this, the trainer local to Newcastle who was even born on Plate day and who is desperate to win it. Here are our six against the field:

Main Contenders


You could argue that this is out of the ordinary for Charlie Appleby. This yard is usually very careful and thoughtful, deciding against prep runs for classics with the likes of Coroebus, Modern Games and Nahanni, and yet they bring Bandinelli here after racing at Ascot only 11 days ago.

Part of the reasoning I think is that, having raced wide and then not been knocked about once his chance had obviously gone in the Copper Horse, he really didn’t have a hard race at all.

The yard knows how to win big races and they’ve always felt there’s a very big one in this improving four-year-old. He has been great on the all-weather in the past too, including on Tapeta.

Sometimes it pays to keep things simple, so bear in mind that even just natural progression at this age brings Bandinelli to where he needs to be off a mark of 98 to go very close here under the classy Tom Marquand and the trip is ideal.

Island Brave 

Island Brave is a standing dish around Newcastle. He’s not without quality, either.

Among his various accomplishments were a third-placed finish in this race last year, although he was later demoted to fourth.

He is very gradually declining, which at eight years old after 55 races is expected, but he’s still smart and has a very useful claimer taking weight off.


Local man Brian Ellison knows how to train winners at Newcastle and he is utterly determined to win the Northumberland Plate at least once.

A feature of the Ellison yard over the years has been his ability to take horses from other yards and improve them, with four-year-old former David Simcock horse Onesmoothoperator being a great example.

Since joining Ellison last November he’s raced seven times, improving from a mark of 81 right up to 98 and there’s more to come.

He has strong course and distance form, is climbing the ladder well, and has been trained specifically for this event which counts for plenty.


Hugo Palmer’s Rajinsky is somewhat of a veteran now but make no mistake; he’s in the form of his life.

He comes here on the back of a very good third behind Cleveland in the Chester Cup which is massive form, while he was also a promoted third in this very race last year.

He has an obvious chance on the book, but his biggest day may have come and gone on the Roodee and he’s up another 2lbs in the handicap for that run.


This race truly revolves around Trueshan so we couldn’t very well leave him out.

Alan King’s stable star is a bona fide, proven Group 1 performer in the right conditions, but those conditions are very much needed which is why he missed two engagements at Royal Ascot last week.

He carried a bus in this race last year too, so his mega-weight is nothing new, and what we do know is that he can run right up to his very best in the Plate.

The only trouble is that your current best form is not usually enough in this race and so once again, he’s vulnerable to improving, well handicapped types.

Valley Forge 

Valley Forge was last year’s Melrose winner and was very good again in taking a valuable Haydock handicap last time, but he’ll need to take another step forward to be good enough to win this for Andrew Balding’s yard.


There are many in with chances, more so even than on this list as you’d imagine. A number of these were very hard to separate on private ratings, though two did stand out.

It would be great to see Hollie Doyle in with a shout on Trueshan of course, but we’d prefer if her husband was rattling by in the final furlong!

The advice is to back both ONESMOOTHOPERATOR and BANDINELLI, who have different profiles but very similar chances.

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