Il De Re (right): heads the betting for the Northumberland PlatePICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)
Newcastle going eases for Northumberland Plate
A WET weekend in Newcastle saw the going for Saturday's John Smith's Northumberland Plate ease to soft, heavy in places from soft.
Torrential rain in the north of England has left some areas flooded and while only 17mm of rain fell at Newcastle, it was enough to prompt a going change.
Newcastle clerk of the course James Armstrong wrote on Twitter: "There was 17mm of rain in total over weekend going now Soft, Heavy in places. Forecast warmer and drier of late till Thurs. Sharp showers Thurs."
Betting for the 2m handicap is headed by Stanjames.com Chester Cup winner Ile De Re for trainer Donald McCain, who sent out Overturn to land the prize in 2010.
The possibility of soft going is viewed as a negative for second favourite Mount Athos by his rider Jamie Spencer, who said: "We could do with conditions drying out at Newcastle as he prefers good or faster ground."
There were 45 runners remaining in the race after Monday's forfeit stage although 12-1 chances Zuider Zee and Al Khawaneej were not among them.