What Of It made hard work of landing the odds at Leicester last month and will need to turn in an improved performance to overcome a penalty here. Preference is for OCA DE THAIX, who won a shade cosily in better company under Charlotte Evans at Ludlow and is unexposed under Rules. Backstreet Lad and Pathian Prince both won between the flags last month but Classic Chance has now failed to finish in either start over regulation fences. Rebecca Curtis saddles Viking Affair after a lay-off but he hasn't shown a great deal so far.
Oca De Thaix (FR) 20-1 (11-3) Tracked leaders, took keen hold, lost place 9th, hit 13th, headway after 15th, close up 2 out, stayed on well to lead towards finish, won at Ludlow 3m hts chs (5) gd in Feb beating Ice Bucket (11-7) by 3/4l, 12 ran.
What Of It (IRE) 5-6fav (11-7) Tracked leaders, went 2nd approaching 6th until after next, left 2nd again after 11th, led approaching last, held on, won at Leicester 2m 4f nov hunt chs (6yo+) (5) gd in Feb beating Louis Pasteur (11-9) by nk, 8 ran.
Ace High Blue (IRE) 5-2 (12-0) (tt) prom til wknd qckly 15; pu 2 out, in a race won by Bobs Law (12-0) at Lydstep 3m ptp gs in Feb, 9 ran.
Back Is Back (IRE) 66-1 (11-7) Chased leader, mistake 14th, lost 2nd and weakened 4 out, beaten when blundered next, 7th of 9, 32l behind Surenaga (11-7) at Sandown 3m am chs 0-130 (3) gs in Feb.
Backstreet Lad 2-5 (12-5) (tt) led til hdd aft 14; led 2 out; sn clr, won at Lydstep 3m ptp gs in Feb beating Treasury Counsel (12-5) by 25l, 2 ran.
Classic Chance 25-1 (11-12) Led after 2nd, blundered 7th, ridden and headed 12th, ridden after next, soon lost place, behind soon after, tailed off when pulled up before 3 out, in a race won by Good Company (11-11) at Ludlow 2m 4f hts chs (6) gs in Feb, 13 ran.
Cloran Jack (IRE) 6-1 (12-0) P & ld to 4out, hdd 3out, sn wknd, 7th of 10, 17l behind Believin' Miracles (12-0) at Necarne 3m ire ptp gd in May.
Gem Mill (IRE) 12-1 (12-0) Towards rr; to, 9th of 12, 47l behind My Go Now (12-0) at Whitwick Manor 3m ptp gs in Feb.
McCauley (IRE) 12-1 (12-0) In tch to 11; to & pu 3 out, in a race won by Now Listen To Me (12-0) at Milborne St Andrew 3m ptp gs in Feb, 14 ran.
Pathian Prince 6-4 (12-0) Jnd ldrs 11; lft clr 3 out; easy, won at Lydstep 3m ptp gs in Feb beating Kingaroy Lass (11-7) by 8l, 14 ran.
Rash Oak (IRE) 50-1 (12-0) A bhnd; to & pu 12, in a race won by New Series (12-0) at Barbury Racecourse 3m ptp gs in Feb, 16 ran.
Viking Affair (IRE) 40-1 (10-5) Led until after 8th, weakened next, tailed off, 6th of 8, well behind Front Of House (10-12) at Stratford 2m 6f nh nov hdl (3) gf in Aug.
Saalback (USA) 3-1 (11-7) Hdwy 9; led 11 til hdd & no ex app last, 2nd of 9, 4l behind Lady Darcy (11-0) at Lydstep 3m ptp gs in Feb.