It's hard to believe sitting in dreary Halifax, but Beverley looks in the best shape ground-wise this afternoon, so it's in Yorkshire we stay for today's Placepot perm.
"Second spot goes to Alkadi, who’s likely to be ridden in a style typical of Mark Johnston’s horses and has been more consistent in recent times than those from her yard often are."
14:10 - It'd be too much to ask for a reliable type to safely negotiate the opening seller, but we can cover most of the bases by taking Reflect and Future Wonder. Neither offers a complete answer, but Reflect is the most able horse in the race by clear water while Future Wonder is unexposed and has given her running more often than not in her light career to date.
14:40 - This would have been an easy, if unimaginative, leg but for Hoofalong's antics at the start last time. Another refusal to enter the stalls probably one of more likely ways to get this promising colt beaten in what's seemingly just a fair maiden overall, but if he does we'd rather be on Palladius than likely second-favourite Gold Beau. On balance, it's worth taking the chance that Mick Easterby has Hoofalong well drilled by now, so he's a banker.
15:10 - A five-furlong minor event rarely makes for an easy Placepot leg, and this looks no different. Tax Free may have five years or more to give away to his rivals, but has enjoyed a good and fairly consistent summer so makes sense as a selection so long as you can forgive his run in the Portland last time, which shouldn't be difficult. Our second selection, Es Que Love, hasn't appeared to offer quite the same consistency, but it should be pointed out that this is a world away from the sort of races he's been competing in and, with him quite possibly the most capable horse in this race, he can get back on track here.
15:40 - It's quite possible that Altharoos will prove far too strong for them, but with him currently being odds on and still green when finishing second at Brighton last time, we can afford to duck him. Easily the most solid alternative is Richard Fahey's Wyldfire, that one having made the frame on both starts so far, including when slowly away and ultimately forced wide at Newcastle last time. With his form already up with the best on offer (aside from the favourite) and further progress sure to come, it may prove difficult to get him out of the first three.
16:10 - This is the leg we've been saving the pennies for, a race inevitably reduced to 15 runners with nothing really sticking out. That said, there are a couple of course specialists in the line-up, namely Shadowtime (six of his seven wins here) and Eeny Mac (three-time course winner in 2012), and the former is even in good form, managing to win away from this track on his most recent start. Third spot goes to Save The Bees, who's already proven himself on this course and on soft ground should the rain arrive. He's also pretty consistent to boot, running at least respectably on on 10 of his 12 starts this year.
16:40 - Difficult to narrow down this seven-strong field to any great degree, but a couple look more solid than most for our purposes. Oddysey seems to find all ground coming alike to her, and given her largely progressive profile is easily forgiven her last run, which nevertheless wasn't a bad one in form terms. Second spot goes to Alkadi, who's likely to be ridden in a style typical of Mark Johnston's horses (tends to be prominent) and has been more consistent in recent times than those from her yard often are.
14:10 - 1, 7
14:40 - 1
15:10 - 3, 4
15:40 - 8
16:10 - 1, 6, 16
16:40 - 1, 2
= 24 lines