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Affluence can help put a few extra pounds in your pocket

Andrew Balding: can strike with King Lud
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Salisbury
Affluence
(3.30) was well beaten on his comeback at Newmarket last month but that did him good as he was a more encouraging second at Leicester last Monday. 

After finding himself trapped on the rail, he stayed on strongly for second behind the well-fancied Conflagration.

Martin Smith’s three-year-old can make the most of an opportunity to race off the same mark in this slightly lower grade.

King Lud (4.30) has been placed in all three starts and the step up to 1m4f can help him get off the mark.

Andrew Balding’s charge was fourth on his debut over a mile and then picked up minor honours twice over 1m2f, most recently at this track where he pulled clear of the also-rans in a race not run to suit. He promises to enjoy this stiffer test of stamina.

Coverham (5.30) scored twice on the sand in the spring and proved that turf was no barrier to success at Newmarket last time out. Aled Beech took over in the saddle that day and the duo gelled perfectly, with Coverham putting his head in front on the line.

Up only 2lb, he should make another bold bid against a field that have been struggling for form recently.

Thirsk
The mile novice contest is likely to concern the two recent all-weather winners Zarjaz and Mutafani (4.15), with preference for Simon Crisford’s three-year-old. 

He suggested his turn was coming when third at Windsor in May and had little trouble opening his account at Chelmsford 17 days later, making all and showing a good turn of foot to seal victory.

A penalty shouldn’t stop him following up in this sort of company.

Lingfield
Lake Shore Drive
(8.50) has been in decent form on the all-weather and looks sure to go well again in the finale. 

He had to settle for second at Wolverhampton in November, but that came just four days after a Lingfield win and he struck again when returning from a break at Wolverhampton last time out. 

Johnny Farrelly’s gelding stayed on strongly to prevail that time and will be hard to beat if matching that form back on turf.

Southwell
Brave Eagle
(8.10) got back to winning ways at Plumpton last time out and can defy top weight in the 3m handicap hurdle. 

Following two lesser efforts at Cheltenham, Nicky Henderson’s charge was dropped in grade slightly last time out and he stayed on strongly to prevail.

He made James Bowen work hard but it looked as though there was a bit left in the tank and this new trip can help him overcome a 5lb higher mark.

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Lake Shore Drive has been in decent form on the all-weather and looks sure to go well again at Lingfield
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