It's no real surprise to see William Haggas' Spirit Of Nguru heading the early market on the back of his latest runner-up finish in a stronger 11-runner Class 3 than this one, over seven furlongs at Wolverhampton on Boxing Day.
From an unhelpful outside stall, he came home strongly and with Adam Farragher's claim effectively making him two pounds lower in a lesser contest, this lightly-raced all-weather performer has to be high on any list, especially with his yard returning figures of 21142 from only five runners over the last two weeks.
Challenging for the favourite tag is Master Zoffany, who has a good chance to reverse recent Wolverhampton form with Spirit Of Nguru under more favourable circumstances.
19:00 (Southwell) Master Zoffany
In their aforementioned Boxing Day meeting at Wolverhampton, Master Zoffany was sent off at a slightly shorter price than Spirit Of Nguru, but he had an even wider draw to contend with in stall 10, which is very tough to overcome over seven furlongs at that venue.
This time, Master Zoffany (stall six) has a better drawn than Spirit Of Nguru (stall nine) and a repeat of his previous run, which saw him impressively win a Class 4 handicap over that same Wolverhampton trip, will give him a good chance of beating Spirit Of Nguru this time.
On that previous occasion, Master Zoffany was able to race more prominently, setting him up for a big finish down the home straight, where he was visually impressive in the way that he went by the front-runner, Mobashr, before scooting clear to win very easily.
That was quite possibly a career-best effort and he may well have built on it under easier circumstances on Boxing Day, and this race gives him the chance to make amends.
His top six career performances have all been recorded over seven furlongs at either the Wolverhampton Tapeta circuit or on the turf at Chester. The thing both of those circuits have in common is that they are both tight, flat, left-handed tracks, a configuration he appears to relish.
This will be his first visit to this track, which fits the bill perfectly, and this five-year-old is still completely unexposed on the all-weather, having had just two runs at Wolverhampton in this sphere.
If anything, this track should suit him even better than Wolverhampton because it has a longer three-furlong run-in, which should help from a stamina perspective because his Class 2 win at Chester was over just under a mile on a slow surface, on which he stayed particularly well to win by almost three lengths.
There should be plenty more to come from Master Zoffany on this surface and his yard is in great shape with four winners from their last six runners.
Perhaps significantly, Richard Fahey sends him here as his only runner of the day with Oisin Orr (who rode a Tapeta winner for the yard just last week) booked for just this one ride.