James McDonald heads to Newcastle for Plate

James McDonald rides Exosphere to win race 2, The Pro-Ride Skyline Stakes, during Sydney Racing at Wawrick Farm on February 28, 2015 in Sydney, Australia

McDonald heads to Newcastle for a first experience of Plate Day

  PICTURE: Getty Images  

 By David Milnes 9:21AM 22 JUN 2016 

GODOLPHIN’S Australian-based jockey James McDonald will take his first rides at Newcastle this weekend including Charlie Appleby’s Antiquarium in Saturday’s John Smiths Northumberland Plate.

The booking on the general 16-1 chance comes about as Appleby’s number one jockey William Buick is set to be in action at Newmarket, where he is to maintain his partnership with promising youngster Nasimi in the Listed Empress Stakes as well as Dutch Connection, who is a leading fancy for the Group 3 Criterion Stakes.

Buick, who was hit with a 30-day ban at Chantilly on Sunday after an incident in the Prix de Diane, is to take his first rides since then at Newcastle on Thursday.

Godolphin are planning to be two-handed in the Northumberland Plate as Appleby is also sending the former jumper Polarisation for a first taste of Tapeta. He was cut to 12-1 (from 14) by Betfred on Tuesday and will be ridden by James Doyle.

Appleby said: “James McDonald has ridden Antiquarium at home and seems to get on well with him, so he’ll be taking the ride. He ran a nice race back after a break at Newmarket the other day and has form on synthetics, so we’d be hopeful granted a half-decent draw.

“John Ferguson had Polarisation but before that he was with Mark Johnston and he seems to be enjoying returning to the Flat. He ran a decent first race for us at Epsom and should improve significantly by stepping up from a mile and a half to two miles.”

Horse Racing News | Racing Post

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