The short-priced early favourite is the bottom-weight five-year-old Kraken Power, but he is a very infrequent winner who has won just one of his total of 31 career starts to date.
That solitary win came in his second race, 29 races ago, over the longer six-furlong trip on an undulating, good-to-soft turf track way back in June 2020.
The potential value created elsewhere brings in Indian Sounds, whom Graham Lee partners in preference to Ruggles (he is the main rider for both yards).
- Next best bet: Indian Sounds
The first-time cheekpieces won't need to have such a dramatic effect to make Indian Sounds a big player in this very moderate contest, and he is entitled to come on again for his first outing in over three months.
One who can beat him here is Brian Ellison's six-year-old, Idoapologise, who is proven over five furlongs on Tapeta at a higher level than this, whilst still being completely unexposed over the minimum trip.
15:35 (Newcastle) Idoapologise
Idoapologise has recorded four of his six career wins on the all-weather, including all of his last three, but he has only ever run over this trip once on a synthetic track, and that piece of form is highly significant in analysing his chancs here.
It came at precisely this time last year and it was in a much stronger Class 4 handicap on the sharper Tapeta circuit at Wolverhampton, where he had the worst draw of all in the very outside stall, which meant his rider had no option but to drop him in at the back of the field.
Considering he had raced exclusively over longer trips prior to that, he travelled nicely behind that quicker sprint pace, and in a race in which the winner and second were in the first two positions throughout, he raced completely against the pace bias.
In addition, he had to wait to start his finishing run at the top of the home straight because he was short of room, eventually resulting in his rider switching him towards the unfavoured far rail, eventually finished a promising never-nearer fourth, missing the places by just a neck.
That handicap was a 0-81 affair in which he ran off a mark of 78, which makes him of major consideration on this first occasion he has had a comparable set of conditions since, in 0-72 company off a mark of just 67.
Conditions in this race are more favourable, too, considering his proven stamina for further, because he substitutes that tight, flat, left-handed Tapeta track, with its standard surface, for Newcastle's straight, uphill Tapeta track where the surface is currently standard-slow.
This more testing combination of factors will give him more time to mount his challenge and he has already shown a liking for this uphill venue by winning here over seven furlongs and, more recently, putting in an eye-catching performance here over six furlongs last October (under today's rider), when he was repeatedly denied a clear run before finishing fast and late.
Since returning from a wind operation last summer, Idoapologise has won three times from seven runs on the all-weather and he now drops in grade.
Harry Russell has won on him before (on Tapeta) and might well still be unbeaten on him, but for a very unlucky run here in that aforementioned six-furlong handicap.
A Class 3 and Class 4 Tapeta sprinter off elevn pounds higher than this last winter, it would be no surprise if this six-year-old were able to beat lower-tier Class 5 opposition under these conditions.