Julie Krone in the States, Hayley Turner on the Flat and Nina Carberry under National Hunt Rules have all shown that women are the equal of their male counterparts in the saddle when given the right ammunition and Katie Walsh is up there with the best. Hollywood once imagined Elizabeth Taylor riding the winner of the world's most famous race but Walsh can turn fantasy into reality by partnering SEABASS to victory in this year's renewal. Her father Ted has kept the 10-year-old wrapped in cotton wool since he finished third in 2012 and he arrives here fresh and still on a decent mark. He only gave best at the Elbow last year having travelled strongly throughout and is better off at the weights with Sunnyhillboy, an unlucky runner-up 12 months ago. It's no surprise that A P McCoy has chosen the Walsh's other runner Colbert Station ahead of the latter as he's a progressive and unexposed sort and he makes more appeal than probable favourite On His Own, whose jumping may be suspect. Big Fella Thanks is likely to give a bold sight and Always Waining has won the Topham Trophy three times over these fences but both may have stamina limitations. Teaforthree and Chicago Grey are both former winners of the 4m National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham, however, and will be staying on if avoiding traffic problems. The latter looks particularly well handicapped and was brought down last year. Seven-year-olds have a shocking record in the race but Saint Are won over the Mildmay fences here last season and the runner-up bolted up over hurdles here on Thursday, while these unique fences could inspire the potentially well-treated Harry The Viking to put his best foot forward. Ballabriggs may struggle to turn back the clock, however, and What A Friend and Weird Al may have too much weight. But Balthazar King could go close as he goes well fresh and proved his versatility and stamina by winning the cross-country chase at the Cheltenham Festival last year and following up over conventional obstacles at the same track in October. At big odds, Tatenen might give each-way backers a run for their money as well and the talented Bryan Cooper could get a tune out of Rare Bob so he looks the pick of the remainder.
Imperial Commander (IRE) 7-2 (11-0) Always prominent on outside, led 11th, pressed 2 out, driven 3 lengths clear between last 2, ridden flat, stayed on gamely until headed and no extra towards finish, 2nd of 10, 1/2l behind Cape Tribulation (11-6) at Cheltenham 3m 1f chs Grd 2 (1) hvy in Jan.
What A Friend 25-1 (11-7) Held up in rear, plugged on from 3 out, never on terms, 8th of 13, 34l behind Opening Batsman (10-5) at Kempton 3m hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Feb.
Weird Al (IRE) 16-1 (11-10) Always towards rear, driven and struggling after 10th, tailed off 13th, pulled up soon after, in a race won by Silviniaco Conti (11-10) at Newbury 3m chs Grd 2 (1) sft in Feb, 8 ran.
Quel Esprit (FR) 10-1 (11-10) Led, strongly pressed and headed 3 out, ridden in 3rd entering straight and no extra approaching last, last of 4, 26l behind Sir Des Champs (11-10) at Leopardstown 3m Grade 1 chs (1) in Feb.
Big Fella Thanks 9-1 (11-12) Tracked leaders, bad mistake and lost place 4th, headway on inside when not much room on bend before 4 out, chased winner next, no impression last, stayed on, held on well for 2nd, 2nd of 11, 5l behind Pacha Du Polder (11-0) at Newbury 2m 4f hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Mar.
Seabass (IRE) 11-4 (11-8) Waited with behind leaders, keen hold, 3rd before last, every chance and kept on without matching 1st 2 run-in, 3rd of 6, 3 1/2l behind Roi Du Mee (11-8) at Fairyhouse 3m 1f chs Grd 2 (1) sft in Feb.
Roberto Goldback (IRE) 12-1 (11-5) Hampered 1st, held up towards rear, steady headway approaching 12th, pushed along to behind leaders 14th, ridden in 7th 4 out, staying on same pace when switched left approaching 2 out, no further impression, 5th of 13, 14l behind Opening Batsman (10-5) at Kempton 3m hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Feb.
Sunnyhillboy (IRE) 28-1 (11-7) Held up towards rear, some headway on outside 4th, lost place when mistake next, well behind before 8th, soon pulled up, in a race won by Ely Brown (11-0) at Warwick 3m 1f hcp hdl (2) sft in Jan, 18 ran.
BallaBriggs (IRE) 17-2 (10-12) Held up in touch on inside, slightly hampered 9th, headway 12th, tracked leading pair next, outpaced when switched outside after 3 out, went 2nd and every chance next, soon ridden, weakened flat, 3rd of 8, 10l behind Always Right (11-2) at Kelso 2m 7f lst chs (1) sft in Mar.
Teaforthree (IRE) 5-1 (11-11) Led, headed 11th, went 2nd 5 out, weakened before 2 out, 10th of 14, 44l behind Well Refreshed (10-0) at Haydock 3m 4f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Feb.
Across The Bay (IRE) 9-1 (11-4) Made all, not fluent 2nd, mistake and jumped left 4 out, ridden before 2 out, kept on, won at Haydock 3m hdl G2 (1) hvy in Feb beating Trustan Times (11-8) by 1 1/4l, 7 ran.
Join Together (IRE) 9-2fav (11-9) Held up in rear of mid-division when badly hampered and dropped to rear 3rd, never able to recover, tailed off and pulled up before 4 out, in a race won by Quentin Collonges (10-0) at Doncaster 3m 2f hcp chs (2) gd in Mar, 12 ran.
Colbert Station (IRE) 11-10fav (10-5) Rear of mid-division, headway in 10th after 4 out, 7th 3 out, 4th entering straight, ridden in 3rd before last, stayed on to lead run-in, won at Punchestown 3m hcp hdl hvy in Feb beating Clashnabrook (9-5) by 2l, 22 ran.
Forpadydeplasterer (IRE) 12-1 (11-0) Chased leaders in 4th, pushed along in 5th 3 out, no impression next and kept on one pace in straight without troubling easy winner, 6th of 14, 18l behind Fosters Cross (11-0) at Leopardstown 2m 2f hdl gs in Mar.
On His Own (IRE) 10-1 (11-3) Tracked leaders and tended to race wide, led approaching straight, pressed and joined before 2 out, in front again before last, stayed on well run-in, won at Navan 2m 5f hdl G2 (1) hvy in Feb beating Si C'etait Vrai (11-3) by 2 1/4l, 6 ran.
Joncol (IRE) 33-1 (11-10) Settled in 3rd, 4th before halfway, mistake 6 out and no impression from next, kept on one pace and moderate 3rd from last, 3rd of 4, 25l behind Sir Des Champs (11-10) at Leopardstown 3m Grade 1 chs (1) in Feb.
Balthazar King (IRE) 11-4fav (11-8) Led to after 1st, remained in touch, led again 16th to 18th, regained lead 21st, blundered 5 out, mistake and headed 2 out, soon ridden, kept on same pace, no chance with winner from last, 2nd of 16, 11l behind Uncle Junior (11-8) at Cheltenham 3m 7f crs cntry chs (5yo+) (2) gs in Nov.
Cappa Bleu (IRE) 5-1 (11-10) In touch, not fluent 12th, headway 5 out, ridden to challenge 3 out, chased winner approaching last, stayed on well, 2nd of 9, 2 1/2l behind Vino Griego (11-3) at Ascot 3m lstd hcp chs (1) sft in Feb.
Oscar Time (IRE) 20-1 (11-6) Always in rear, pushed along from early, trailing from 4 out, last of 17, well behind Rich Revival (10-9) at Naas 3m hcp chs sft in Mar.
Always Waining (IRE) 40-1 (10-13) Prominent, outpaced after 7th, soon weakened, tailed off, 8th of 13, well behind Fourovakind (11-9) at Chepstow 3m hcp hdl 0-120 (4) sft in Mar.
Tatenen (FR) 50-1 (10-10) Mid-division, hampered 4th, outpaced 2 out (usual 3 out), ridden and kept on from next, no impression, 6th of 23, 22l behind Alderwood (10-11) at Cheltenham 2m hcp chs G3 (1) sft in Mar.
Treacle (IRE) 5-2 (11-0) Tracked leaders mainly 3rd, ridden after 3 out and led narrowly next, kept on well under pressure and drew clear run-in, won at Down Royal 3m 2f chs hvy in Mar beating Ninetieth Minute (11-0) by 4l, 5 ran.
Lost Glory (NZ) 12-1 (11-5) In touch on ouside, headway to chase leaders 13th, went 2nd 4 out, ridden to lead before last, driven out, won at Chepstow 3m hcp chs 0-150 (2) sft in Oct beating Mostly Bob (10-9) by 1 3/4l, 12 ran.
Swing Bill (FR) 28-1 (11-5) Mid-division, headway and in touch on outside 10th, lost place 15th, soon behind, 16th of 24, well behind Same Difference (11-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-145) (5yo+) (2) gs in Mar.
Saint Are (FR) 25-1 (11-4) Chased leaders, dropped to mid-division 8th, reminder 14th, soon behind, 12th of 24, 37l behind Same Difference (11-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-145) (5yo+) (2) gs in Mar.
Chicago Grey (IRE) 25-1 (11-3) Settled behind leaders, closed up into 2nd going well 3 out, in front approaching last, stayed on well run-in, won at Navan 2m 4f chs G2 (1) hvy in Feb beating Foildubh (11-3) by 2 1/2l, 4 ran.
Quiscover Fontaine (FR) 16-1 (11-3) Waited with, 5th 3 out, no impression and kept on same pace from next, 5th of 8, 20l behind Mount Benbulben (11-0) at Thurles 2m 2f chs 0-145 sft in Feb.
Rare Bob (IRE) 12-1 (11-10) Towards rear, headway from 4 out, 4th next, soon ridden, kept on same pace from 2 out, 3rd of 17, 2 1/4l behind Rich Revival (10-9) at Naas 3m hcp chs sft in Mar.
The Rainbow Hunter 7-1 (11-5) Held up in rear, headway 3 out, soon chasing leaders, never on terms, 4th of 9, 10l behind Vino Griego (11-3) at Ascot 3m lstd hcp chs (1) sft in Feb.
Becauseicouldntsee (IRE) 20-1 (11-10) With leader, led narrowly 11th (water), headed narrowly 14th, every chance until ridden and lost place after last (usual 2 out), weakened flat, 5th of 24, 20l behind Same Difference (11-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-145) (5yo+) (2) gs in Mar.
Harry The Viking 20-1 (11-10) Chased leaders, ridden and outpaced 2 out (usual 3 out), soon weakened, 10th of 24, 33l behind Same Difference (11-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-145) (5yo+) (2) gs in Mar.
Mr Moonshine (IRE) 7-2 (11-12) Led, ridden and headed 3 out, chased winner until between last two, no impression, weakened to 4th flat, 4th of 7, 17l behind Mcmurrough (11-0) at Haydock 2m 4f hcp chs 0-145 (2) gs in Mar.
Mumbles Head (IRE) 20-1 (11-10) Mid-division, lost place 3rd, reminders before next, struggling 10th, soon weakened, behind when pulled up 4 out, in a race won by Cannington Brook (11-12) at Haydock 3m hcp chs 0-145 (2) hvy in Dec, 10 ran.
Ninetieth Minute (IRE) 11-4 (11-0) Tracked leaders, 5th halfway, smooth headway to challenge approaching 2 out, soon ridden and found little under pressure, no extra run-in, 2nd of 5, 4l behind Treacle (11-0) at Down Royal 3m 2f chs hvy in Mar.
Auroras Encore (IRE) 16-1 (11-2) Tracked leaders, lost place 13th, weakened 3 out, tailed off, 5th of 8, well behind Always Right (11-2) at Kelso 2m 7f lst chs (1) sft in Mar.
Tarquinius (FR) 6-1fav (10-9) Mid-division, mistake 1st, weakened from 4 out, 14th of 17, well behind Rich Revival (10-9) at Naas 3m hcp chs sft in Mar.
Any Currency (IRE) 9-1 (9-13) Chased leaders, pushed along 23rd, lost place 24th, mistake 27th, well held after, 9th of 16, 27l behind Big Shu (10-5) at Cheltenham 3m 7f hcp chs (2) gs in Mar.
Major Malarkey (IRE) 13-2 (10-6) Mid-division when mistake 1st and soon pulled up, in a race won by Big Occasion (9-7) at Uttoxeter 4m 1f lstd hcp chs (1) hvy in Mar, 11 ran.
Soll 7-2 (11-10) Chased leader, led 2nd, clear when hit 2 out, stayed on strongly from last, won at Sandown 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) hvy in Mar beating There's No Panic (11-12) by 5l, 6 ran.
Viking Blond (FR) 16-1 (10-3) Mid-division, chased leaders and not fluent 6th, soon lost place, chased leaders 10th, weakened from 2 out, 5th of 14, 23l behind Well Refreshed (10-0) at Haydock 3m 4f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Feb.