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A new chapter begins as Southwell stages its first race on Tapeta after 32 years of Fibresand action. Quite how the recently laid surface will ride remains to be seen so a degree of caution should be exercised today. Gleneaglet still has potential at this trip and is respected, while Toromona has one piece of 2yo form that gives him outstanding claims. CAN CAN GIRL comes here in good form though and she is tentatively preferred.
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It is hard to know how any potential draw bias may play out on the new surface but there looks to be a good spread of pace across the track. Night On Earth has made a fine start for new connections but a penalty for a race that set up ideally for him last week does ask a stiffer question. Rose Hip should be winning more races this winter but stall 1 wouldn’t look ideal. Astro Jakk could revive in first-time blinkers but BE PROUD is preferred. Jim Goldie’s 5yo has done well on turf this year, is still on a competitive mark and could find that this race is run to suit him.
Eagle’s Realm turned in an improved effort upped to this trip last time and is greatly respected, while Near Kettering and Abel Tasman need a market check. HACKBERRY couldn’t cope with a tough opening mark but he should appreciate both the drop in class and return to AW today and he still has a bit of potential in this sphere.
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She has a 424-day absence to overcome but VIRGIN SNOW won on her reappearance as a 3yo and last season’s form has a solid look to it. She might be classy enough to defy topweight, with Viola and Timeless Soul looking the pick of the opposition.
A chance is taken on class-dropper CLIPSHAM GOLD, who admittedly has inconsistent form but she represents last year’s winning yard and is open to improvement at this level with headgear applied. Second choice is Summereyes, who looks interesting upped to 1m on her handicap debut. Hat-trick seeker Vaxholm has to be feared, while Sun Rising and Midgetonamission are other major form contenders.
The standard for the newcomers to aim at isn’t a daunting one and although Justcallmepete and Murphy’s Dream are open to improvement, there are some well-related debutants on show. Government, Kodiac Blue and True Warfare fall into that category but LOVE MYSTERY has ticks in lots of boxes on paper and he could be the answer.
The leading form contenders are WINEGLASS BAY and Yantarni in that slight order of preference. The latter remains open to progress but his odds-on defeat last time tips the scales narrowly in favour of Wineglass Bay, whose latest effort was a step forward from his debut. Teumessias Fox and Nazca are respected newcomers.
Recent winners Kodi Gold and Redzone both have claims under their respective penalties, while Grey Galleon can go well and Excessable and The Thin Blue Line both have something to recommend them. SOYOUNIQUE (nap) won twice on the AW for his previous yard and he still appeals as being capable of better. He can defy an absence and make a winning stable debut.
Southwell tips today
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