Trainer Sir Mark Prescott’s Big Thunder is set to rumble his rivals in the Northumberland Plate at Newcastle

The master plotter Sir Mark Prescott’s Big Thunder is set to make his seasonal debut in the Pitman’s Derby. The big grey rattled up five wins last season and looks well place for a bold show in the valuable handicap.  With ground conditions in his favour he should get the better of the Chester Cup victor Suegioo and the well fancied Angel Gabrial.

The greatest threat to the Prescott gamble could well be Willie Mullins’ Lucky Bridle who makes an interesting entry. Mullins scooped a big win with Pique Sous at the Royal meeting and could have this one planned too. If the money comes in for the Prescott horse in the Northumberland Plate expect it to be a grey day for the bookies.

At Newmarket the globe-trotting Sheikhzayedroad looks set to win the race in honour of the great Fred Archer (2.55) and the consistent grey Ocean Tempest should be winning the valuable Windsor contest at (3.40).

Over in Ireland Australia will be odds on to confirm his superiority over the classic generation in the Irish Derby (Curragh 5.30).


The Lincoln winner has continued to improve throughout the season for his Newmarket yard. Expect John Ryan’s stable star to continue his winning ways when he runs in the listed Midsummer Stakes.


The whisper is that this ex-Australian superstar is set for a bold show with the firmer conditions in his favour. If anywhere near his best he will coast past his rivals – This is no Melbourne Cup field.


In the race bearing the Tinman’s name, Archer would have been certain to select this classy globe-trotter. The shrewd horseman would have noticed his substantial improvement at four and that fact he holds his form this season

Crockford’s Gambles around the courses on Saturday 27 June:

Newcastle –  Saayerr (2.40) and Big Thunder e/w (Northumberland Plate 3.50)

Curragh – Kool Kompany e/w (4.50) and Australia (Irish Derby 5.30)

Newmarket – Landwade Lad (1.45), Garswood (3.30) and Manderley (4.05)

Windsor – Doctor Kehoe e/w (1.55) and Shropshire e/w (4.10)

Chester – Steve Prescott (2.10), Jillnextdoor e/w (2.45) and Trader Jack e/w (5.05)


(Featured Photograph – Sheikhzayedroad by Stuart Rice)