Willie Mullins has won this three times in the past 10 years and relies on top-weight Bishopsfurze. He was a useful novice last season and returned to action after a break with a victory over hurdles in November and looks to have been primed for this. Sole Witness jumped superbly in the very testing conditions at Navan and, though raised 7lb, Ben Dalton's claim will be a bonus. Panther Claw stayed on resolutely to score at Punchestown but a lack of experience may be his problem here but that won't be a concern to OUTLAW PETE. A prolific winner between the flags, he won the cross country race at Cheltenham last month and will be even better suited by today's more testing conditions. He's well enough handicapped and is handed the vote though last year's runner-up Tullintain looks a real threat from just 2lb higher after a very good trial run at Limerick.
Bishopsfurze (IRE) 4-1 (11-0) Made all, ridden and strongly pressed from 2 out, driven out and stayed on well from last, comfortably, won at Thurles 2m 6f hdl in Nov beating Folsom Blue (11-10) by 2l, 11 ran.
Son Amix (FR) 9-2 (11-0) Tracked leaders, 5th 4 out, 6th and no impression before 2 out, soon no extra, 6th of 11, 19l behind Bishopsfurze (11-0) at Thurles 2m 6f hdl in Nov.
Sole Witness (IRE) 16-1 (11-6) Soon prominent, moderate 3rd approaching straight, closed 3 out, challenged in 2nd next, soon led, drew clear from before last, stayed on well, won at Navan 2m 4f hcp chs 0-130 hvy in Dec beating Ballinahow Lady (11-3) by 4l, 15 ran.
The Westener Boy (IRE) 14-1 (11-9) Mid-division, 8th halfway, towards rear when mistake 4 out and soon pulled up, in a race won by Back In Focus (11-10) at Leopardstown 3m nov chs Grade 1 (4yo+) (1) sft in Dec, 12 ran.
Medical Card (IRE) 20-1 (11-3) Mid-division, weakened from 4 out, no impression straight, 12th of 20, well behind Tofino Bay (11-4) at Navan 3m hcp chs 0-150 hvy in Nov.
Belle Brook (IRE) 50-1 (10-6) Led, headed before 4 out and soon ridden, no extra in 4th 2 out, 4th of 6, 35l behind Bog Warrior (11-4) at Punchestown 2m 4f hdl hvy in Dec.
Glenquest (IRE) 20-1 (10-5) Chased leaders, 3rd halfway, headway to lead after 2 out, ridden and headed early straight, no extra in 2nd last, dropped to 4th closing stages run-in, 4th of 28, 10l behind Colbert Station (10-11) at Leopardstown 3m hcp chs 0-145 sft in Dec.
Tullintain (IRE) 10-1 (10-5) Prominent, in pursuit of leader but struggling approaching straight, no impression when left in dispute of lead and slightly hampered last, soon no impression under pressure, kept on same pace, 2nd of 13, 1 1/4l behind Jack Absolute (11-0) at Limerick 2m 3f hcp chs 0-145 hvy in Dec.
Jadanli (IRE) 50-1 (10-5) Tracked leaders, lost place 3rd, not fluent next, headway approaching 11th, hampered 13th, weakened 5 out, blundered 3 out, pulled up before next, in a race won by Monbeg Dude (10-1) at Chepstow 3m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) hvy, 17 ran.
Sumkindasuprstar (IRE) 10-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, weakened 4 out, pulled up before 2 out (poor visibility), in a race won by Rich Revival (10-13) at Navan 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 hvy, 11 ran.
Come To The Party (IRE) 8-1 (11-5) Led and disputed, headed 5 out, soon pushed along, no extra from 3 out, 6th of 13, 41l behind Wilde Wit Pleasure (10-6) at Cork 2m 4f hcp chs 0-130 hvy.
Panther Claw (IRE) 11-4fav (11-11) Tracked leaders in 4th, ridden to go 2nd entering straight and challenging when left clear 2 out, kept on well, won at Punchestown 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-123) (5yo+) hvy beating Spot The Boss (10-13) by 2l, 11 ran.
Ros Brin (IRE) 11-1 (11-2) Mid-division, ridden in 9th 2 out, no extra, 9th of 13, 28l behind Beneficial Spirit (10-3) at Naas 2m hcp chs 0-130.
Tarquinius (FR) 8-1 (10-7) Chased leaders, led after 5 out, ridden in 4th and no extra when reappeared form fog at last, kept on same pace (poor visibility), 4th of 11, 17l behind Rich Revival (10-13) at Navan 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 hvy.
Toon River (IRE) 4-1 (11-9) Led or disputed lead, headed approaching straight and dropped to 3rd, ridden and no impression on winner in 2nd before last, kept on same pace, 2nd of 16, 5l behind Madam Bovary (11-5) at Punchestown 2m 4f beg chase hvy.
In Great Form (IRE) 4-1 (10-12) Chased leaders, weakened after 5 out, pulled up before 2 out (poor visibility), in a race won by Rich Revival (10-13) at Navan 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 hvy, 11 ran.
Outlaw Pete (IRE) 7-2 (10-0) Mid-division in touch, headway 26th, challenged on outside 2 out, led approaching last, ridden clear flat, won at Cheltenham 3m 7f hcp chs (2) hvy in Dec beating Bostons Angel (10-13) by 7l, 11 ran.
Murchu (IRE) 5-1 (11-2) Tracked leaders, 4th 3 out, soon ridden, went 3rd after 2 out, kept on one paced, 3rd of 11, 11l behind Tarquinius (10-9) at Fairyhouse 3m 1f hcp chs 0-123 hvy.
Saoirse Dun (IRE) 11-4fav (10-1) Mid-division, headway into 5th 4 out, challenging in close 3rd when reppeared from fog at last, ridden and no extra run-in (poor visibility), 3rd of 11, 3 1/2l behind Rich Revival (10-13) at Navan 2m 4f hcp chs 0-140 hvy.
Boland's Corner (GER) 25-1 (11-7) Well off pace towards rear, never a factor, kept on approaching straight, 5th of 10, 45l behind Beeverstown (11-12) at Limerick 2m 1f beg chs hvy in Dec.