Southwell Placepot: Thursday January 29

Southwell race on Thursday afternoon
Southwell race on Thursday afternoon

There's all-weather racing at Southwell this afternoon and that's where we head for Thursday's attempt at the Placepot...

Poppy Bond shaped as if she's still operating at the top of her game when getting overhauled close home last week, and she ought to give a good account... 

14:00 It would be little surprise to see Electric Qatar go extremely close for the Appleby yard as he's leniently treated on the pick of his form and clearly relishes the fibresand. He has been well backed, however, and this is quite a competitive contest, so we'll side with Very First Blade and Camanche Grey in the hope of a decent Placepot result. Both horses have been drawn low, which has often proven to be an advantage over this C&D, and are well able to strike from their current marks. Very First Blade arrives at the top of his game having posted a career best here last time, while Camanche Grey hinted at a revival, so bold bids are expected from the pair.

14:30 Only seven go to post, which can make things tricky from a Placepot perspective, but it's difficult to look beyond Risk 'n' Reward who was an impressive winner here on Tuesday and, if anything, ought to be suited by this drop back in trip. He looks banker material to follow up.

15:00 Luv U Whatever is a six-time course winner and he produced his best effort yet when winning over C&D under an aggressive ride from today's rider. Luv U Whatever has more on his plate today, racing from a 6-lb higher mark, but he's built up a good rapport with Liam Jones and looks sure to launch another bold bid from the front. For a bit of insurance, we'll also include another Appleby runner in The Lock Master as he's on a handy mark at present, made all the more attractive by the booking of a good-value 5-lb claimer.

15:30 Plenty in here hold a decent chance, and Lean on Pete looks particularly interesting having dropped to a very handy mark. He's gone well on fibresand before and has held excuses the last twice, so should be given a good chance. He's joined in the permutation by Lexington Bay who won here in 2013 and ran well in defeat on his only fibresand start last year.

16:00 The withdrawal of recent winner Stradater has made things tricky, ensuring that only two horses will progress in the Placepot, and we will include both Bainne and Putin. Bainne was a creditable third here over seven furlongs last time, and the application of cheekpieces may draw further improvement, while Putin wasn't disgraced here on Tuesday having helped cut out too strong a pace, and should be treated as if still in form. 

16:30 Poppy Bond ran creditably when finishing runner-up over a mile here recently and she should prove well suited by dropping back to seven furlongs, a distance she won over earlier in the month. Poppy Bond shaped as if she's still operating at the top of her game when getting overhauled close home last week, and she ought to give a good account. 

Recommendations:
14:00- 6, 11
14:30- 5
15:00- 1, 2
15:30- 4, 6
16:00- 2, 6
16:30- 9
= 16 lines

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