Some smart performers have won this in the past, including Cue Card in 2010. Donald McCain trained last year's winner and has useful winning pointer and bumper Hellorboston in the line-up this time. Spirit Of Shankly finally got off the mark at Market Rasen last month while Revocation won at Hexham and Wakanda followed up success at Sligo by finishing second at Hexham on his first start for Sue Smith. Big things are expected of ROYAL REGATTA this season after he galloped his rivals into submission in a Haydock bumper in March and he gets the vote to make a winning hurdles debut.
Revocation 7-1 (11-0) Mid-division, headway 2 out, led before last, stayed on strongly, won at Hexham 2m mdn hdl (5) gs beating Spin Cast (10-7) by 7l, 11 ran.
Spirit Of Shankly 5-6fav (10-12) Mid-division, headway when hit 3 out, went 2nd next, ridden to challenge when hit last, led flat, ran on well final 75 yards, won at Market Rasen 2m 1f nh nov hdl (4) gd in Sep beating Oyster Shell (11-2) by 3 1/2l, 8 ran.
Wakanda (IRE) 9-4 (11-5) Tracked leaders, not fluent 3 out, went 2nd and effort next, soon switched right, one pace and no impression approaching last, 2nd of 9, 4l behind Saint Thomas (11-5) at Sedgefield 2m 1f nh nov hdl (4) gf.
Dundee 12-1 (10-12) In touch, lost place 5 out, outpaced 3 out, rallied next, stayed on well after last, never able to challenge, 3rd of 10, 6l behind Tick Tocker (10-12) at Bangor 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gd in May.
Hellorboston (IRE) 12-1 (11-12) Tracked leaders, ridden 8f out, edged left over 2f out, went 2nd 1f out, stayed on, no impression on winner, 2nd of 9, 7l behind Regal Diamond (11-2) at Ayr 2m NH flat (4) gs in Apr.
Rolling Maul (IRE) 2-1 (10-12) Jumped poorly, chased leaders, slow jump 2nd, blundered next, slow again 4th, weakened soon after 4 out, 5th of 9, 22l behind Killala Quay (11-5) at Chepstow 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gd.
Royal Regatta (IRE) 3-1 (11-2) Made all, ridden clear from over 1f out, ran on well, won at Haydock 2m nhf (5) gs in Mar beating Operatic Heights (10-9) by 12l, 7 ran.