Les Eyre’s QUEEN OF KALAHARI was a pretty convincing winner from Crosse Fire over 5f here just under three weeks ago. She’s one of a number of Fibresand specialists in this line-up and is virtually guaranteed to be suited by the return to 6f (four from five over C&D). Despite competing from a career-high mark, Antony Brittain’s mare Puchita may give the selection the most to do.
Seaclusionp and Sealed Offer have leading claims if their latest efforts are overlooked but BLACK SPARROW has a more consistent profile and she is taken to defy a penalty.
Notation is a fly in the ointment and could be capable of leaving her juvenile form behind her but it’s hard to be confident about her after such a long spell on the sidelines. It’s probably best to stick with the proven CHEAP JACK who is closely matched with Mr Carbonator but has discovered the winning habit recently.
It is probably best to focus on the two recent C&D winners who both have more to offer at this venue. Star Of St James has Connor Murtagh’s claim to try to offset a 4lb rise in the weights but XCELENTE (nap) was a cut above this grade as a juvenile and looked set to win more races when easily scoring here twelve days ago. Ayr Harbour is an each-way option back on the AW.
Ivaquestion was a revelation at Kempton (1m3f) and that form reads well in the context of this particular race but whether or not he can back up that much improved effort remains to be seen. Instead a chance is taken that the stamina-laden soft-ground Bath winner RUSSIAN RUMOUR appreciates the switch to the Southwell Fibresand. As a dual 1m6f turf winner, Beat The Heat is another possible contender in a weak race.
With a question mark about the trip for Harmonious, this looks between MOUNTAIN DREAMS and Lover’s Moon. Neither has run on Fibresand but Mountain Dreams has relatives who acted well on various AW surfaces, including dirt, and her recent third at Wolverhampton was a pretty useful effort. Lover’s Moon is respected on her Polytrack form at 1m and she is likely to be dangerous in receipt of weight from the selection.
Thawry was an wide-margin winner on his first attempt on Fibresand (1m4f) and had a plausible excuse (short of room) when beaten under a penalty. However, he isn’t certain to stay this longer trip on pedigree and can be opposed as the probable market leader. The solution to this puzzle may lie with Mick Appleby’s C&D winner SEA OF MYSTERY who managed to see off all bar a fast-improving David Simcock-trained 3yo in a fiercely run Class 5 handicap at Chelmsford three weeks ago.
The Racing Post’s tips for Southwell today
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*All prices correct at time of publication*