VIF ARGENT, consistency personified in France, was beaten 80 lengths on his British debut for David Pipe at Cheltenham behind Balthazar King. A different performance is now anticipated as he drops to the sort of trip over which he excelled on the other side of the channel. Market vibes should reflect stable confidence. Oscar Hill, Rouge Et Blanc and Oh Crick are not in the best of form but Passato was much better last time after a poor sequence. The main danger to the selection, though, could prove to be Sands Cove who ran satisfactorily on his first outing for Charlie Mann at Chepstow since leaving Charlie Swan. Red Riverman was well beaten that day. The reliable Notarfbad will find this easier than when well behind Drumshambo in a hot Ascot chase last time.
Oscar Hill (IRE) 8-1 (11-9) Very keen to post, raced keenly, led mistake 1st, soon well clear, reduced lead 7th, headed and lost 2nd 4 out, weakened next, 4th of 6, 27l behind Gallox Bridge (11-6) at Kempton 2m hcp chs 0-135 (3) gs in Oct.
Rouge Et Blanc (FR) 25-1 (11-5) Held up in rear, not fluent 5th, headway on outside 7th, every chance 3 out, weakened nest, pulled up before last, in a race won by Mart Lane (11-3) at Stratford 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 (3) sft in Oct, 9 ran.
Notarfbad (IRE) 8-1 (10-7) Always towards rear, struggling 4 out, tailed off, 10th of 15, 38l behind Drumshambo (11-4) at Ascot 2m 1f listed hcp chs (1) gs.
Oh Crick (FR) 14-1 (10-6) Mid-division, outpaced 3 out, soon weakened, 13th of 17, 32l behind Anay Turge (10-7) at Cheltenham 2m hcp chs 0-145 (2) gd.
Red Riverman 4-1fav (11-5) Held up in rear, headway 3 out, went 4th from 2 out, weakened last, 7th of 8, 23l behind Flaming Charmer (10-9) at Chepstow 2m nov hcp chs 0-125 (3) hvy.
Passato (GER) 25-1 (10-13) Tracked leader, challenged 3 out, led between last 2, joined last, headed flat, no extra, 2nd of 8, 4 1/2l behind Ikorodu Road (11-5) at Stratford 2m 4f hcp chs 0-135 (3) sft in Oct.
Sands Cove (IRE) 5-1 (11-2) In touch, took closer order 7 out, ridden 3 out, kept on, 3rd of 8, 15l behind Flaming Charmer (10-9) at Chepstow 2m nov hcp chs 0-125 (3) hvy.
Vif Argent (FR) 8-1 (10-0) Held up in rear, headway 13th, in touch in 5th when blundered 3 out, soon weakened, 12th of 16, well behind Balthazar King (11-6) at Cheltenham 3m hcp chs (2) gd in Oct.