Big things are expected of THE MERRY GIANT and, though he had to work hard to land the odds on his racecourse debut in a bumper at Worcester last May, he seems certain to improve now faced with a set of hurdles over a longer trip. After a promising start over timber, Oscar Papa was a big disappointment at Folkestone last time but is capable of making the frame here if back to form. Merehead should improve on his Newbury fourth while David Pipe's newcomer Our Father has a jumping pedigree but may do better when tackling fences.
Be True (IRE) 8-1 (10-12) Prominent, tracking leaders when brought down soon after 5th, in a race won by Upthemsteps (10-12) at Towcester 2m NH mdn hdl (4) sft in Dec, 16 ran.
Bottman (IRE) 10-11fav (10-9) Took keen hold, led after 2nd and set steady pace, stumbled and headed 2 out, outpaced when not much room between last 2, went modest 3rd flat, 3rd of 4, 7l behind Great Esteem (10-12) at Wincanton 2m nov hdl (4) gd in Oct.
Cotillion 5-1 (11-0) Held up towards rear, jumped slowly 2nd, some headway when not fluent 3 out, no impression, soon beaten, 8th of 22, 27l behind Minella Class (11-0) at Newbury 2m mdn hdl (4) gd in Dec.
Merehead (FR) 10-1 (10-9) Towards rear, headway approching 3 out, hung left from 2 out, left modest 4th last, 4th of 15, 19l behind Kid Cassidy (11-0) at Newbury 2m NH mdn hdl (3) gs in Nov.
Mickytaker (IRE) 16-1 (10-6) Towards rear, headway over 3f out, kept on from over 1f out no impression, 5th of 17, 8l behind Avoca Promise (11-2) at Bangor 2m 1f NH flat (5) gd in Dec.
Oscar Papa 9-4fav (11-0) Tracked leaders, outpaced 2 out, soon ridden and weakened, 9th of 16, 40l behind Global Power (11-0) at Folkestone 2m 6f mdn hdl (4) sft in Dec.
Ostaadi 3-1 (9-7) Tracked winner, driven over 2f out, not trouble winner over 1f out, kept on well for 2nd, 2nd of 7, 4l behind Penang Princess (9-3) at Kempton 2m 3yo hcp 0-80 (4) pol in Jun '09 (flat).
Our Father (IRE) Shantou gelding out of Rosepan.
Pontyates 3-1 (10-11) Took keen hold, tracked leader until ridden over 5f out, no impression over 3f out, weakened over 2f out, 4th of 5, 18l behind Youralltalk (10-7) at Ffos Las 2m mdn NH flat (5) gf in Oct.
Rockabilly (FR) 9-2 (11-0) Tracked leaders, lost place 9th, weakened 3 out, 6th of 13, 22l behind Educated Evans (10-11) at Stratford 2m 6f mdn hdl (4) gs in Oct.
Saute 33-1 (10-9) In touch, lost place 7th, soon behind, tailed off, 8th of 11, well behind No Secrets (10-12) at Folkestone 2m 6f nov hdl (4) hvy.
Seymour Eric 4-1 (10-9) Chased winner, hit 6th, outpaced when blundered 3 out, soon ridden and lost place, lost 3rd and weakened between last 2, pulled up before last, in a race won by Silver Footnote (10-12) at Uttoxeter 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) hvy in Nov, 7 ran.
Supreme Oscar (IRE) 200-1 (10-5) Led until approaching 8th, weakened before 3 out, pulled up after 2 out, in a race won by De Forgotten Man (10-12) at Towcester 2m 5f nh nov hdl (3) gs in Dec, 16 ran.
The Merry Giant (IRE) 4-5fav (11-0) Chased leaders, pushed along over 4f out, challenged from 2f out, upsides, green and hung left over 1f out, led inside final furlong, on top near finish, won at Worcester 2m NH flat (6) gf in May beating Railway Diva (10-11) by 1/2l, 13 ran.
Another Kate (IRE) 14-1 (10-12) Tracked leader, led 5th until after 3 out, weakened after 2 out, 7th of 14, 43l behind Whoops A Daisy (10-12) at Hereford 2m 1f mdn hdl (5) sft.
Big Knickers 7-2fav (10-7) In touch in mid-division, not fluent 4th, soon ridden and lost place, pulled up before 5th, in a race won by Spock (11-0) at Worcester 2m 4f mdn hdl (4) gd in Oct, 13 ran.