Timeform's Matt Gardner takes to the all-weather at Kempton for Thursday's crack at the Placepot...
"Icebuster shaped better than the result would suggest on numerous occasions last term and should probably have won on his return last week..."
16:55 - Although there are five runners at present, presenting us with two places to aim at, there has to be a distinct possibility that one will come out, ensuring that we require the winner. Bearing that in mind we may be best to take an ultra-safe approach and include three, namely Mr Knightley, Hurricane Spirit and Officer In Command, and move on relatively secure in the knowledge that we ought to progress.
17:30 - Greek Islands has shaped well in defeat on his last two starts but his profile suggests that he is not one to trust implicitly, so we will instead side with handicap debutant Deal Me In. The four-year-old, trained by Ian Williams, has improved with each start and strikes as being the type to really show what he is made of now he steps out of maidens. An opening mark of 60 doesn't seem excessive, and he ought to go close.
18:00 - Hill Of Dreams has just a maiden win to her name and she is prone to running the odd stinker, but she has reacted well to the fitting of blinkers on her last two outings and there is every chance that her losing run can come to an end here.
18:30 - Jacobella is an interesting runner now stepping up in trip but preference is for the Richard Hannon-trained Beat Of The Drum, who is likely to prove capable of better this term. The three-year-old was relatively unfancied on debut but showed plenty of promise to finish sixth; she was probably unsuited by the softer ground encountered at Nottingham next time but a winter break could have done her the world of good, and it would be no surprise were she to improve now.
19:00 - Net Whizz, Rockalong and Sword In Hand are all fairly unexposed and likely to prove capable of better; of that trio the one we want on side is Sword In Hand, who scored over C&D in September and finished a good second at Newbury the following month. We're also going to include one with a bit more experience, namely Flamborough Breeze, who has been in excellent form of late and remains of interest despite going up 3 lb after finishing second on her latest outing.
19:30 - Homeric has a progressive profile and Tadabeer has improved on his last couple of starts, so they have to be respected, but I'm fairly certain that Icebuster will win this. He shaped better than the result would suggest on numerous occasions last term and should probably have won on his return last week, being unsuited by the steady pace. He races off the same mark here and it would come as a surprise were he not to go very close.
16:55 - 2, 4, 5
17:30 - 1
18:00 - 6
18:30 - 1
19:00 - 10, 11
19:30 - 10
= 6 lines