Market support for either newcomer, especially Apples And Trees, needs to be taken seriously with the McCain yard enjoying a healthy strike rate in such races. Nevertheless, SHADES OF MIDNIGHT shaped with considerable promise on his Kelso debut in what appeared a decent bumper. Improvement seems assured and he's taken to go one better with the benefit of experience, although the one negative is the lowly stable strike rate in contests of this nature. Pithivier has encountered heavy ground on both starts, filling the minor placing on each occasion. The Niven inmate clearly has ability and it will be interesting to see how he handles better ground. He certainly represents shortlist material.
Apples And Trees (IRE) Oscar gelding out of Native Bramble.
Charlie Snow Angel Overbury gelding out of Sister Seven.
Major Ridge (IRE) 22-1 (11-4) Tracked leaders, challenged over 5f out, outpaced 3f out, no impression after, 5th of 9, 13l behind Never Never (10-11) at Hexham 2m mdn NH flat (6) sft in Mar.
Meet Henry 100-1 (11-0) In touch on inside, lost place 5f out, soon weakened, tailed off, 9th of 14, well behind Sir Vinski (11-3) at Kelso 2m NH flat (6) gd in Mar.
Pegasus Walk (IRE) 13-2 (10-13) Held up towards rear, pushed along halfway, soon outpaced, 6th of 9, 49l behind Oleohneh (11-4) at Sedgefield 2m 1f NH flat (6) gd in Mar.
Valnamixe Du Mee (FR) 66-1 (11-4) Always behind, 13th of 14, 46l behind Ustica (10-10) at Newcastle 2m mdn nhf (6) sft in Mar.
Clan Legend 12-1 (10-11) Held up in rear, well behind final 9f out before pulling up, in a race won by Never Never (10-11) at Hexham 2m mdn NH flat (6) sft in Mar, 9 ran.
Pithivier (FR) 3-1 (10-8) Held up mid-division, ridden over 2f out, kept on same pace, 3rd of 9, 16l behind Grove Silver (11-3) at Newcastle 2m NH flat (6) hvy in Feb.
Shades Of Midnight 25-1 (10-5) Tracked leaders, effort to lead over 3f out, soon ridden, headed over 2f out, kept on same pace, went 3rd towards finish, no chance with winner, 3rd of 14, 11l behind Sir Vinski (11-3) at Kelso 2m NH flat (6) gd in Mar.