Just the eight from Nicholashayne to consider and we'll plump for PIRAYA ahead of Big Eared Fran and Andytown. Big Eared Fran is partnered by the yard's conditional and won very easily on his handicap bow at the weekend which leaves him looking very well handicapped. He was fancied for the bumper last year but didn't fire there and has taken a while to get his act together over hurdles; he has now and has a clear chance. Mamlook has some big handicap form to his name but he has been below par in two visits here so has something to prove on that front. Penn Da Benn has turned over a new leaf and could still be open to plenty of improvement but his two wins were achieved in small fields. Faltering Fullback is interesting back up in trip with cheekpieces fitted whilst Carrickboy is better than he showed last time and enters calculations with his yard enjoying a good week. Quartz De Thaix was favourite for the race won by Big Eared Fran last Saturday and it's interesting to see him turned out again quickly after that disappointment. Andytown has something to prove after disappointing runs over fences and hurdles but he had looked very promising when winning here in October and shouldn't be dismissed. Little Shilling has had a remarkable year but this is surely asking too much and we'll opt for Piraya who was tipped up to win a valuable chase here in November. The yard was out of form then and when he took a heavy fall at Ascot in December but there was a lot more to like about his run in the Racing Post Chase last month. He's completely unexposed over hurdles and is 10lbs lower than when he began the season which makes Piraya worth an interest.
Gaspara (FR) 16-1 (11-0) Led, not fluent 4th, ridden and headed 2 out, edged right flat, kept on same pace, 5th of 21, 15l behind Quevega (11-3) at Cheltenham 2m 4f hdl Grd 2 (1) gs.
Acambo (GER) 6-1 (11-12) Held up in rear, weakened from 5th, tailed off when pulled up 5 out in race won by Medicinal (11-5) at Haydock 2m hcp chs 0-140 (2) gs in Nov, 14 ran.
Piraya (FR) 20-1 (10-6) Rear, hit 1st, headway into mid-division 12th, chased leaders after 4 out, weakened approaching 2 out, 7th of 20, 26l behind Nacarat (10-13) at Kempton 3m hcp chs Grd 3 (1) gd in Feb.
Mamlook (IRE) 12-1 (9-12) Held up towards rear, headway 4 out, chased leaders 3 out, went 2nd before 2 out, soon every chance, every chance last, no extra flat, 4th of 14, 1 1/2l behind Serabad (10-10) at Ascot 2m 3f hcp hdl (2) hvy in Feb.
Penn Da Benn (FR) 10-1 (11-2) Held up and pulled hard, headway after 3 out, led 2 out, ridden and hung left approaching last, ran on well on flat, won at Wincanton 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) sft in Feb beating Stripe Me Blue (10-9) by 4l, 7 ran.
Faltering Fullback 6-4fav (11-12) Settled behind leaders in 4th, closer before straight, 4th 3 out, went 2nd soon after, ridden and no impression leader before last, kept on same pace, 2nd of 5, 2 1/2l behind Brave Betsy (11-4) at Navan 2m hdl sft in Feb.
Presenting Copper (IRE) 9-4fav (11-11) Tracked leaders and keen, led 4th, headed 6th, weakened 4 out, 7th of 10, 33l behind Osako D'airy (11-7) at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp chs 0-140 (2) hvy in Feb.
Caracciola (GER) 10-1 (10-7) Mid-division until 3 out, never back on terms, 9th of 16, 27l behind Fair Along (11-5) at Cheltenham 3m hcp hdl (2) gs in Dec.
Buena Vista (IRE) 20-1 (10-9) Raced keenly, led, ridden and headed approaching last, weakened flat, 6th of 11, 12l behind Big Buck's (11-11) at Cheltenham 3m hcp hdl (2) gs in Jan.
Andytown (IRE) 5-2 (11-0) Hanging right throughout, chased winner until 11th, ridden in 3rd when blundered and weakened 3f out, last of 4, 24l behind Pancake (11-0) at Kempton 2m 4f beg chs (4) gs in Feb.
Big Eared Fran (IRE) 13-2 (11-6) Held up in rear, headway on inside approaching 2 out, soon chasing leaders, went right and hit last, soon led, driven and stayed on well, won at Sandown 2m 4f nov hcp hdl Grd 3 (1) gd beating Bakbenscher (11-6) by 3l, 18 ran.
Coq Hardi (FR) 3-1 (11-2) Tracked leaders, one pace from 2 out, 4th of 7, 12l behind Or Bleu (11-2) at Bangor 2m 4f beg chs (4) hvy in Nov.
Carrickboy (IRE) 2-1fav (11-3) Keen early, disputed lead to 1st, in touch, ridden after 3 out, weakened after 2 out, 7th of 9, 14l behind I Have Dreamed (11-0) at Hereford 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-145 (2) gs in Feb.
Hangover (IRE) 8-1 (10-10) Mid-division, 8th and headway after 4 out, 3rd after next and on terms into straight, soon narrowly in front, stayed on best run-in, won at Gowran Park 2m 4f hcp hdl 81-123 hvy in Feb beating Prudent Honour (11-2) by 1 1/2l, 20 ran.
Pauillac (FR) 7-1 (10-9) Mid-division, reminder 10th, ridden and chased leaders 17th, weakened after 4 out, 4th of 9, 21l behind Double Dizzy (10-12) at Wincanton 3m 1f hcp chs 0-135 (3) gs in Jan.
Little Shilling (IRE) 4-1 (10-8) In touch, headway 8th, led after 3 out, stayed on well, ridden out, won at Fontwell 3m 3f hcp hdl 0-145 (2) sft in Dec beating Honour High (11-4) by 4l, 9 ran.
Khachaturian (IRE) 9-2 (11-12) Led to 6th, soon ridden, weakened 3 out, 7th of 8, 45l behind Captain Americo (10-10) at Wincanton 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) sft in Feb.
Carrick Oscar (IRE) 5-1 (11-0) Chased leaders, chaser winner after 11th, driven when fell 4 out in race won by Carruthers (11-0) at Fakenham 3m beg chs (4) gs in Jan, 6 ran.
Leamington Lad (IRE) 150-1 (11-7) Mistake 5th, always behind, tailed off when pulled up 3 out in race won by Go Native (11-7) at Cheltenham 2m nov hdl Grd 1 (1) gs, 20 ran.
Quartz de Thaix (FR) 5-1fav (11-6) Mid-division, mistake 4th, some headway after 3 out, soon weakened, 12th of 18, 35l behind Big Eared Fran (11-6) at Sandown 2m 4f nov hcp hdl Grd 3 (1) gd.
Oscatello (USA) 1-9fav (11-0) Led from 3rd, made rest, clear from 8th, blundered last, easily, won at Leicester 2m 4f beg chs (5) gs beating Irish Guard (11-0) by 13l, 5 ran.
Font 7-2 (11-8) Held up, headway to chase leaders 3 out, chased winner before 2 out, weakened between last 2, 4th of 14, 16l behind Micheal Flips (11-8) at Kempton 2m nov hdl (2) gd in Dec.
Prince De Bersy (FR) 13-2 (11-7) Ran in snatches, prominent 7th, weakened 2 out, 5th of 10, 32l behind Mr Big (10-7) at Uttoxeter 2m 6f hcp chs 0-110 (4) hvy in Jan.
Midnight Chase 11-2 (11-9) Towards rear, headway 7th, ridden approaching 3 out, chased leaders bend approaching 2 out, weakened after, 6th of 8, 28l behind Captain Americo (10-10) at Wincanton 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) sft in Feb.