HINTERLAND was in the process of running a big race in the Champion Chase until unseating his rider four out. He's much improved this season and, back in novice company, can recapture the winning thread. Trifolium wasn't beaten far when third in the Arkle and should be thereabouts again. Ted Veale was beaten when falling in that race and looks held. Leopardstown second Moscow Mannon faces easily his toughest task to date over fences but Balder Succes has won four times this season, including a couple of Grade 2 contests. But he was a long way behind the selection in a Grade 1 at Sandown in December. The front-running Next Sensation and Simply Ned are being asked to step up from handicap company.
Balder Succes (FR) 9-4 (11-7) Disputed close 3rd, outright 3rd at 8th, went 2nd 3 out, led narrowly 2 out, asserted at the last, stayed on well flat, ridden out, won at Kempton 2m 4f nov chs G2 (1) sft in Feb beating God's Own (11-0) by 1 1/4l, 6 ran.
Hinterland (FR) 11-1 (11-10) Held up towards rear, not fluent 3rd, 7th when hampered and unseated rider 4 out, in a race won by Sire De Grugy (11-10) at Cheltenham 2m chs G1 (1) gd in Mar, 11 ran.
Moscow Mannon (IRE) Evensfav (11-9) Held up behind leaders in 5th, headway into 3rd 4 out, 2nd next, led 2 out, ridden and strongly pressed before last, headed at last, soon 3rd, kept on to regain 2nd inside final furlong, 2nd of 6, 1 3/4l behind Mount Colah (11-4) at Leopardstown 2m 1f nov chs sft in Mar.
Next Sensation (IRE) 7-1 (11-0) Led 2nd, soon clear, reduced advantage 2 out, ridden and went 3 lengths clear again last, kept on until headed and no extra final 100 yards, dropped to 4th near finish, 4th of 23, 1 3/4l behind Savello (11-5) at Cheltenham 2m hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Mar.
Simply Ned (IRE) 9-2 (11-12) Held up in rear, headway on inside from 7th, ridden and close 3rd from 3 out, stayed on, always just held by front pair, 3rd of 9, 1l behind Doeslessthanme (11-1) at Doncaster 2m hcp chs 0-145 (2) gd in Mar.
Ted Veale (IRE) 25-1 (11-4) Not fluent 1st, in rear, chased leaders when mistake 3 out, 7th and one pace when fell next, in a race won by Western Warhorse (11-4) at Cheltenham 2m nov chs G1 (1) gs in Mar, 9 ran.
Trifolium (FR) 11-4fav (11-4) In touch, tracked leader from 3rd, challenged and every chance 2 out, ridden and one pace after last, no impression with front pair flat, 3rd of 9, 4 1/2l behind Western Warhorse (11-4) at Cheltenham 2m nov chs G1 (1) gs in Mar.