Fruity O'Rooney made a bold bid to make all in this 12 months ago and was only cut down on the run to the line by Alfie Sherrin. He's a pound better off with third Our Mick and 7lb better off with fourth The Package and can confirm running with both of those and make the frame again this afternoon. Quantitativeeasing was even further behind and has been out of sorts this season while Tullamore Dew only beat one home and isn't getting any younger. Midnight Chase, Planet of Sound and Jadanli are others approaching the veteran stage while the handicapper may have finally got to Cloudy Too and Pete The Feat but Merry King went down with all guns blazing at Haydock in December and should have been freshened up by a short break since. White Star Line was second over a shorter trip at last year's Festival but this is a tough race in which to try and lose his maiden tag while Monkerty Tunkerty only won a veterans' handicap at Doncaster last month and was earlier more than 11 lengths behind LOCH BA at Newbury. Much improved this season for Mick Channon, the seven-year-old showed a fine turn of foot on the soft ground that day and can defy a 12lb rise in the weights. Novices Tour Des Champs and Poole Master may be best of the rest.
Quartz de Thaix (FR) 8-1 (11-12) Tracked leaders in 3rd, lost place before 4 out ridden and weakened before 3 out, 8th of 9, 42l behind Seymour Eric (9-11) at Haydock 3m hcp hdl (2) hvy in Feb.
Midnight Chase 12-1 (11-10) Prominent on inside, lost place 15th, soon no chance with leading trio, tailed off, 4th of 10, well behind Cape Tribulation (11-6) at Cheltenham 3m 1f chs Grd 2 (1) hvy in Jan.
Planet of Sound 10-1 (11-4) Held up behind in touch, switched outside and headway after 4 out, left 3rd when not fluent next, soon ridden, kept on same pace from next, no impression with front pair, 3rd of 8, 11l behind Master Overseer (10-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Grade 3 hcp chs (4yo+) (1) hvy in Dec.
Cloudy Too (IRE) 4-1 (11-11) Mid-division, headway before 4 out to track leaders, challenge 3 out, led 2 out, shaken up before last, kept on strongly, won at Haydock 2m 4f Novice Handicap Chase (0-140) (5yo+) (3) hvy in Feb beating Ohio Gold (11-8) by 8l, 7 ran.
The Package 10-3fav (11-4) Tracked leaders, hit 3 out, weakened approaching 2 out, pulled up before last, in a race won by Ely Brown (11-0) at Warwick 3m 1f hcp hdl (2) sft in Jan, 18 ran.
Hey Big Spender (IRE) 11-2 (11-12) Held up in rear, mistake 8th, hit 12th, headway 14th, led 4 out, bumped 3 out, mistake next, headed approaching last, no impression on winner flat, 2nd of 9, 9l behind Michel Le Bon (11-7) at Newbury 3m 2f hcp chs 0-145 (2) gd.
Our Mick 8-1 (10-11) Always prominent on outside, every chance when went left and unseated rider when collided with winner 3 out, in a race won by Katenko (10-13) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Jan, 16 ran.
Nadiya De La Vega (FR) 8-1 (10-11) Made most to 7th, chased leaders, outpaced 4 out, left 3rd next, stayed on to chase clear winner last, lost moderate 2nd final 100 yards, 3rd of 16, 16l behind Katenko (10-13) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Jan.
Quantitativeeasing (IRE) 20-1 (10-12) Always towards rear, reminders after 9th, struggling 12th, blundered next, tailed off, 10th of 13, 37l behind Opening Batsman (10-5) at Kempton 3m hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Feb.
Knockara Beau (IRE) 3-1fav (11-10) Led, clear and not fluent 2nd, mistake 7th, jumped left 8th, outpaced 2 out, kept on from last, went 4th flat, 4th of 6, 11l behind Shutthefrontdoor (11-0) at Carlisle 3m 1f hcp hdl (2) sft in Feb.
Tour Des Champs (FR) 13-2 (11-4) Led, headed 15th, blundered badly 4 out, soon weakened, 3rd of 5, 13l behind Rocky Creek (11-7) at Ascot 3m nov chs G2 (1) sft in Feb.
Merry King (IRE) 7-2fav (11-4) Tracked leader, every chance from 3 out, stayed on under pressure after last, just failed, 2nd of 10, ns behind Cannington Brook (11-12) at Haydock 3m hcp chs 0-145 (2) hvy in Dec.
Fruity O'Rooney 12-1 (10-5) With leaders on inside, led 7th to 11th, outpaced in 5th when hit 3 out, stayed on to take moderate 2nd final 100 yards, no chance with winner, 2nd of 16, 12l behind Katenko (10-13) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Jan.
Jadanli (IRE) 25-1 (11-3) Waited with, moderate 4th and no impression from before 2 out, kept on same pace, 4th of 6, 21l behind On His Own (11-3) at Navan 2m 5f hdl G2 (1) hvy in Feb.
Tenor Nivernais (FR) 7-1 (11-3) Led, went right 2nd, slow jump and headed next, chased leader, led again 6th until 9th, led again 4 out, ridden and headed 2 out, chased winner, held when dropped to 3rd and mistake last, 3rd of 5, 5l behind Shoegazer (11-6) at Fontwell 2m 6f nov chs (2) sft in Feb.
Pete The Feat (IRE) 2-1fav (11-12) Led, headed 11th, chased leader, blundered 12th, lost 2nd approaching 14th, soon beaten, tailed off when pulled up before 3 out, in a race won by Prince Of Pirates (11-10) at Kempton 3m hcp chs 0-140 (3) gs in Feb, 10 ran.
Loch Ba (IRE) 8-1 (11-7) Tracked leaders, not fluent 1st, challenged 8th, led 2 out, clear before last, stayed on well, won at Newbury 3m hcp chs 0-130 (3) sft in Jan beating Mountainous (11-7) by 8l, 12 ran.
Nuts N Bolts 2-1fav (11-2) Mid-division, headway before 8th to chase leaders, led before 10th, blundered and headed 12th, regained lead before 2 out, clear before last, kept on well, won at Ayr 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 (3) hvy in Feb beating Charingworth (10-11) by 3/4l, 9 ran.
Poole Master 10-11fav (11-0) Tracked leaders in 3rd, ridden after 3 out, soon beaten, last of 3, 34l behind Kruzhlinin (11-7) at Kelso 2m 1f nov chs (3) hvy in Feb.
Monkerty Tunkerty 11-4fav (10-11) Held up towards rear, headway before 5 out, chased leaders 11th, challenged before 3 out, led 3 out, held on well, won at Doncaster 3m hcp chs 0-145 (2) gd in Feb beating Marufo (10-11) by 2 3/4l, 10 ran.
Tullamore Dew (IRE) 25-1 (9-12) Mid-divisison on inside, outpaced 4 out, ridden next, kept on under pressure from last, never near leaders, 4th of 16, 17l behind Katenko (10-13) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy in Jan.
White Star Line (IRE) 9-1 (11-12) Soon chased leaders, 8th 3 out, ridden to chase winner and no impression run-in, kept on, 2nd of 13, 5l behind Home Farm (11-12) at Fairyhouse 2m 5f beg chase sft in Feb.
Summery Justice (IRE) 16-1 (10-0) Raced wide towards rear, never on terms, 9th of 13, 36l behind Opening Batsman (10-5) at Kempton 3m hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Feb.
Golden Chieftain (IRE) 11-2 (10-10) With leader, led before 8th, headed 11th, ridden before 2 out, soon lost 2nd place, one pace, 3rd of 10, 24l behind Ballynagour (10-0) at Warwick 2m 4f hcp chs 0-150 (2) sft in Feb.