My Tent Or Yours is an obvious starting point in this opener having defied a mark of 149 to win the Grade 3 Betfair Hurdle at Newbury with plenty left in the tank. Ill-fated stablemate Darlan followed a similar route before finishing second in this contest 12 months ago and Nicky Henderson will be hoping My Tent Or Yours will go one better. However, it's a worry that he's only raced on flat tracks before and he's very short in the betting when one considers others appear equally as progressive. The Irish have a strong hand and Jessica Harrington's Jezki is unbeaten over hurdles and beat CHAMPAGNE FEVER by a length-and-a-half at Fairyhouse in December. However, last year's Champion Bumper was conceding 3lb that day and has it must be significant that Ruby Walsh has chosen him. Willie Mullins is also represented by strongly-fancied stablemate Un Atout and the useful Pique Sous, while Dodging Bullets ran very well in the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton on Boxing Day having beaten River Maigue in a Grade 2 here in November. Puffin Billy will relish conditions but may not be quite good enough, a remark that also applies to Cause Of Causes and former Champion bumper performer Cheltenian.
Cause Of Causes (USA) 14-1 (11-5) Mid-division, weakened after 4 out, 16th of 21, well behind My Tent Or Yours (11-2) at Newbury 2m hcp hdl Grade 3 (1) sft in Feb.
Champagne Fever (IRE) 2-1fav (11-10) Made all, not fluent 1st, ridden approaching last and kept on well under pressure run-in, won at Leopardstown 2m 2f nov hdl G2 (1) sft in Feb beating Bright New Dawn (11-10) by 1 3/4l, 8 ran.
Cheltenian (FR) 7-2 (11-2) Tracked leaders and keen, led 2 out, mistake last, kept on and edged right run-in, caught post, 2nd of 11, shd behind Minella Forfitness (11-8) at Doncaster 2m NH nov hdl (4-7yo) (4) gd in Feb.
Dodging Bullets 8-1 (11-7) Held up in last pair in touch, headway after 3 out, effort next, soon ridden and one pace, stayed on to take 3rd flat, no impression, 3rd of 7, 7l behind Darlan (11-7) at Kempton 2m hdl G1 (1) hvy in Dec.
Fire King 66-1 (11-2) Behind, pulled hard, under pressure 5th, behind when pulled up after 3 out, in a race won by Leviathan (11-2) at Plumpton 2m mdn hdl (5) sft in Feb, 13 ran.
Jezki (IRE) 11-8fav (11-7) Chased leaders, 4th halfway, 3rd 3 out, travelled well to lead before last, pushed out to assert run-in, easily, won at Leopardstown 2m nov hdl Grade 1 (1) sft in Dec beating Waaheb (11-10) by 6l, 9 ran.
My Tent Or Yours (IRE) 5-1fav (11-2) Took keen hold held up in close touch on inside and always travelling well, went 2nd on bit before 2 out, led between last 2, 4 lengths ahead last, kept on strongly flat, easily, won at Newbury 2m hcp hdl Grade 3 (1) sft in Feb beating Cotton Mill (10-9) by 5l, 21 ran.
Ostentation 10-1 (11-6) Held up towards rear, some headway before 3 out, soon ridden and weakened, 9th of 10, 34l behind Songsmith (11-1) at Plumpton 2m hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gs in Jan '12.
Pique Sous (FR) 4-7fav (11-12) Made all, asserted approaching last and kept on well, comfortably, won at Thurles 2m Maiden Hurdle (5-6yo) in Oct beating Dale Street (11-4) by 5l, 18 ran.
Puffin Billy (IRE) 4-5fav (11-11) Took keen hold, held up in 4th, went 2nd 3rd, led soon after next, went riight 3 out, mistake next, soon ridden, joined last, soon headed, not pace of winner, 2nd of 5, 9l behind Melodic Rendezvous (11-11) at Exeter 2m 1f Listed nov hdl (1) hvy in Feb.
River Maigue (IRE) 6-4 (11-10) Tracked leaders, left in 2nd approaching 3rd, effort 2 out, ran on well, never reached winner, 2nd of 4, 2 1/2l behind Far West (11-1) at Ascot 2m nov hdl (2) sft in Feb.
Un Atout (FR) 2-7fav (11-7) Tracked leader in 2nd, headway to lead entering straight and cruised clear from 2 out, very easily, won at Naas 2m nh nov hdl hvy in Jan beating Rory O'Moore (11-9) by 19l, 6 ran.