Timeform highlight a key piece of form
Timeform highlight a key piece of form

Timeform: Strong form and horses to follow

Timeform highlight a piece of form that is working out well and identify a couple of horses who will be of interest next time.

Newbury, August 13

7f maiden

Maidens and novices at Newbury are often informative affairs contested by well-bred horses from top yards. That was certainly the case for the seven-furlong maiden won by Alotaibi on August 13, and the form has unsurprisingly worked out well. Alotaibi, a £150,000 purchase who is trained by John & Thady Gosden, was beaten on his only subsequent start, but the second, fifth, sixth and tenth have all won subsequently, while others have gone close.

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The third and the fourth have not run since but, given how well the race is working out, they are well worth looking out for. We won't have to wait long to see the fourth, Dubai Poet, in action as he has been declared for a novice over the same course and distance on Saturday. Dubai Poet, a 140,000 guineas purchase by Lope de Vega, shaped with obvious promise on debut and was beaten only two and a half lengths. Roger Varian has had only two winning juvenile debutants this season from 27 representatives - and one of those was Bayside Boy who went on to win the Group 2 Champagne Stakes. Only three from 20 have won at the second time of asking, which is also less than you would expect for such a powerful yard, but they have been taking a big step forward and improvement can be expected from Dubai Poet.

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The third home, Sea Dart, was a 66/1 shot but he exceeded expectations on debut for Jonathan Portman. He was more clued-up than most of his rivals but it should still be regarded as a promising first attempt. Timeform's paddock reporter thought the field were a good bunch on looks and Sea Dart, described as a rather unfurnished colt, has a bit of scope for physical progress. He may have been a big price on debut and represents a yard not renowned for two-year-old winners - Portman has had only one winning juvenile this year - but he should not be underestimated after such a promising debut.

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