A decent turnout for this staying handicap and a good pace looks guaranteed as several of these like to race up with the pace. Bench Warrant is one of those but, along with Definite Dawn, he was pulled up at Ffos Las on his latest start. An easy Fontwell win will have boosted the confidence of River D'Or but he's 10lb higher here, while Bob 'N' You was let down his jumping when favourite at Kelso and these fences are a lot tougher. Dom D'Orgeval is approaching the veteran stage now but this is his time of year and he is back on a winning mark. Nick Williams' 12-year-old is certainly one for the short-list but just lacks a bit of scope and is passed over in favour of IRON CHANCELLOR. Alan King's novice has always looked likely to be suited by a stamina test and ran well for a long way in last month's National Hunt Chase before unseating his amateur rider. Choc Thornton is back on board today. Ballycarney has plenty of weight but could also figure if fully wound-up following a break with Gone To Lunch possibly best of the rest.
Ballycarney (IRE) 11-4 (10-12) With leader on outer, pushed along over 3 out, ridden to chase winner before last, every chance run-in, kept on and held towards finish, 2nd of 6, 3/4l behind Ely Brown (10-13) at Doncaster 3m nh nov hdl (4) gs in Dec.
Gone To Lunch (IRE) 3-1 (11-12) Led, headed 4 out, 4th and outpaced on inside 2 out, rallied to go 3rd near finish, no impression with leading pair, 3rd of 4, 5l behind Upham Atom (11-0) at Wincanton 3m 3f hcp chs 0-130 (3) gf.
Iron Chancellor (IRE) 33-1 (11-6) Chased leaders on inside, mistake and pecked when hampered 18th, mid-division when mistake and unseated rider 21st, in a race won by Teaforthree (11-6) at Cheltenham 4m am nov chs (2) gd in Mar, 19 ran.
Ballyfoy (IRE) 14-1 (10-3) Mid-divison, headway 19th, soon ridden, outpaced from 5 out, plugged on from 2 out, went 4th after last, no impression, 4th of 16, 19l behind Master Overseer (10-3) at Uttoxeter 4m 1f lstd hcp chs (1) gs in Mar.
Definite Dawn (IRE) 9-1 (11-0) In touc, headway to 2nd at 7th, jumped slowly and lost 2nd 8th, soon lost place, ridden before 10th, soon struggling, behind when mistak 13th, tailed off and pulled up before 4 out, in a race won by Victors Serenade (11-5) at Ffos Las 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) sft in Mar, 9 ran.
Frontier Dancer (IRE) 40-1 (11-0) In rear when badly hampered first and lost all of 10 lengths, ridden 7th, never a factor, 13th of 16, well behind Bear's Affair (10-13) at Kempton 2m 5f hcp hdl 0-145 (2) gd in Mar.
River D'or (FR) 6-1 (11-5) Raced in 3rd off the pace until dropped to last trio 4th, closed to track leading pair 14th, led after 4 out, clear next, stayed on well, easily, won at Fontwell 3m 2f hcp ch 0-110 (4) gd beating Salut Honore (10-12) by 37l, 7 ran.
Templer (IRE) 7-2 (11-13) Left in lead after 1st, headed next, led approaching 4th, not fluent and headed 12th, outpaced by leaders from 3 out, hung left approaching last, 4th of 6, 11l behind Presentandcorrect (12-3) at Exeter 3m hts chs (6) gd in Mar.
Dom d'Orgeval (FR) 4-1 (11-2) Held up, headway 9th, 3rd when hit 4 out, mistake and beaten 2 out, weakened last, 3rd of 9, 20l behind Bradley (11-8) at Haydock 3m 4f hcp chs 0-130 (3) gd.
Bench Warrent (IRE) 11-1 (11-4) Led, headed approaching 10th, chased leader, driven 10th, losing place and towards rear when blundered badly 12th, pulled up before next, in a race won by Victors Serenade (11-5) at Ffos Las 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) sft in Mar, 9 ran.
Gorge (AUS) 22-1 (10-6) Held up, headway 9th, went 3rd 3 out, no extra flat, 3rd of 9, 7l behind Lackamon (11-12) at Uttoxeter 3m nov hcp chs (3) gs in Mar.
Bob 'n' You (IRE) 11-8fav (10-7) Held up in close 4th, mistake 9th, not fluent next, mistake 11th, chased winner 4 out, about 4 lengths down when jockey nearly took wrong course flat, no impression, stayed on, 2nd of 4, 2 3/4l behind Inverlochy Lad (11-7) at Kelso 3m 1f nov chs (4) gd.
Battlecry 3-1 (11-5) Led until after 4th, last 9th, not fluent next, closed 13th, challenged 4 out until before last, stayed on same pace flat, 2nd of 4, 4l behind Up To The Mark (11-9) at Ludlow 2m 4f hcp chs 0-120 (4) gd in Mar.
Plum Pudding (FR) 25-1 (10-5) In rear, effort from 4 out, soon weakened, 9th of 10, 35l behind Dover's Hill (11-11) at Sandown 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) gd in Mar.
Red Rouble (IRE) 14-1 (11-7) Chased leaders, led 7th (water), headed 12th, weakened, 8th of 13, 35l behind Gotoyourplay (11-2) at Newbury 2m 6f nov hcp chs 0-120 (4) sft in Dec.
Royal Kicks (FR) 13-2 (11-7) Jumped left, held up, rapid headway to go prominent and bumped rival 7th, went 2nd before 10th until 16th, went 2nd again after 4 out, lost 2nd last, stayed on same pace flat, 3rd of 7, 5l behind Double Chocolate (11-7) at Newton Abbot 3m 2f hcp ch 0-110 (4) gd.