Wolverhampton Placepot: Friday December 28

Wolverhampton is the venue of today's Placepot.

Timeform's Matt Gardner takes to the all-weather at Wolverhampton for Friday's crack at the Placepot...

"Piscean is a better horse on this surface and isn’t impossibly treated on a mark of 95, with the likely strong pace also set to suit..."

15:50 - Many began to question Irish Heartbeat's temperament as his losing run continues but, on debut for this yard over six furlongs here last week, he shaped encouragingly in finishing second to Fathsta, beaten only a neck. He may not be one to trust entirely for win purposes but he has a solid chance of making the places this afternoon. It is also worth sticking in Azrael, trained by Alan McCabe, who was well backed at Lingfield last time and shaped a bit better than the bare result. He is not one to write off from his current mark of 72, having run well off 95 only last year, and he can go well. 

16:20 - Were Magique, a half-sister to the stable's smart performer Grandeur, to reproduce any of her three runs to date she would probably emerge triumphant in this field. We currently have two places to aim at, which offers a little bit of comfort, but we can be sure that, if there is a non-runner which results in us needing the winner, we are on the most likely sort. 

16:50 - My reluctance to rely on one under a penalty means that, as well as including Cheers For Thea, we're also going to stick in Mataajir. The first mentioned showed her best form for some time when winning at this venue 11 days ago, being suited by how the race developed, and a similar scenario may unfold here with plenty of pace options available. Mataajir rattled up a hat-trick at the turn of the year and, although he hasn't shown a great deal since returning from a summer break, there was slightly more promise to be gleaned from his effort on Saturday and he may be able to build on that. 

17:20 - This is a decent sprint handicap in which the first name to make the cut if Piscean, who will be suited by the return to six furlongs and the all-weather. The seven-year-old is a better horse on this surface and isn't impossibly treated on a mark of 95, with the likely strong pace also set to suit. Were he to have one of his "off" days however it may be wise to have All Or Nothin, who looks open to further improvement on his all-weather debut, also on our side. 

17:50 - Not too many of these make a great deal of appeal and, in a race of this ilk, you are often looking for one that is simply likely to run his race. Holden Eagle fits the bill, with the seven-year-old's boasting form at this track and a fairly consistent profile. We shall also include Stetson, who shaped as if this step up in trip would suit when second to Honest Strike at Lingfield last time.
18:20 - Black Truffle cut little ice on his first four starts but he caught the eye in no uncertain terms, on just his second start for this yard, when finishing best of all to grab third at Lingfield 10 days ago. Despite him being a fairly obvious selection he doesn't have the feel of a banker about him so I also want to include Hazard Warning, who almost made it onto the list of Sandstormers prior to his fairly poor effort last time. He may prove that to be just a blip and, on his second start in handicap company, may outrun his present odds. 

15:50 - 2, 4
16:20 - 4
16:50 - 1, 9
17:20 - 2, 6
17:50 - 4, 6
18:20 - 10, 11
= 32 lines

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