It looks as though we can get away with the skinniest realistic perm at Newton Abbot today, so that's where the Placepot selections come from.
"... by far the closest thing we have to a trustworthy sort is Captain Kelly, who is only twice-raced over fences but had more good days than bad over hurdles and has made a promising start to his career over the larger obstacles."
14:20 - The opening mares' novice can be quickly whittled down to the two previous winners, Top Totti and Neston Grace. Though Top Totti has the greater experience over hurdles, she also has a poor run last time to excuse and lesser form on balance. Conversely, Neston Grace hasn't run a bad race since her debut, while she won at least as strong a contest as this on her first try hurdling back in May. A subsequent absence is the only question mark and she is therefore a banker.
14:50 - Although leg two contains just four runners, we can skirt around the need to take them all. If I Were A Boy won't be good enough, while it would be a surprise were Tiny Tenor able to match what near-useful chaser De Faoithesdream and useful hurdler Mr Watson can manage between them, so those two are taken.
15:20 - To keep the lines down we have to take risks from time to time, and this is one such occasion. Angles Hill showed form well in advance of what will be required here in handicaps last autumn so, for all he has a couple of poor runs in the winter to put behind him, his early strength in the market is enough to make us think he's ready to do himself justice returning from a break.
15:50 - In many ways this is a typical summer handicap, with the horses involved generally unreliable for all the best of them border on useful. As though to emphasise the point, by far the closest thing we have to a trustworthy sort is Captain Kelly, who is only twice-raced over fences but had more good days than bad over hurdles and has made a promising start to his career over the larger obstacles. He already looks well suited to the demands this race looks set to place on him and he goes in as a banker.
16:20 - There's no easy way out of this seller. Our best bet looks to be taking a couple of those with good recent runs to their name. Argaum is the strongest option, with four of his five runs this summer in the realms of respectability. A positive ride brought out the best in Pindar on his return last month and, so long as we can pin a poor run next time on an quick turnaround, he looks as solid as anything bar Argaum.
16:50 - It would be disingenuous to call the last race anything other than poor. The resultant small mercy is that we can only really entertain two of the five runners, namely Nothingbutthetruth and Sadler's Star. They are close in the betting, but in terms of their recent consistency Sadler's Star wins hands down. He is therefore selected as a banker to carry us home, with the usual fallback of laying him for a place available should you see fit to do so.
14:20 - 1
14:50 - 1, 2
15:20 - 2
15:50 - 2
16:20 - 4, 12
16:50 - 2
= 4 lines
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