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Tuesday 19 May 2015

7.50 Southwell, Wednesday, May 20

In the 18 to 30 Golf Membership £210 Handicap Hurdle (7.50) at Southwell on Wednesday, Band Of Thunder proved a revelation on his first start for Mark Tompkins at Plumpton ten days ago and seems sure to be popular under a 7lb penalty. However, the six-year-old hasn’t stood much racing in recent seasons and may not be especially robust.

The handicapper may also have caught up with Follow The Tracks, who remains 18lb higher in the weights than when winning comfortably at Taunton three starts ago and appeared to be beaten fair and square at Fontwell last time, so a ‘surprise’ result doesn’t look entirely out of the question.

That said, there’s plenty of ‘dead wood’ in the race, so finding a likely winner from beyond the front pair in the market is no easy task, either. Storm To Pass (14/1) ran a promising race on his first start for nearly a year, in a better race than this, at Fakenham last April and was far from disgraced over a seemingly inadequate 2 miles 3½ furlongs at Towcester last May on his only subsequent start.

The Overbury gelding has another lengthy absence to overcome and has his stamina to prove conclusively, but he’s only 2lb higher than his last winning mark and has the services of talented conditional jockey Bridget Andrews, so he could be the solution in a race that may not take as much winning as the numbers suggest.

 Selection: Southwell 7.50 Storm To Pass to win