The progressive Un Bon P'Tit Gars is upped in class after wins in maiden and novice company at Uttoxeter but should hold his own. Romeo Americo defied odds of 100/1 to chase home Oscara Dara in the Lanzarote at Kempton and a repeat of that effort would put him in the firing-line, though he was a long way behind the much-improved Quaddick Lake over 2m at Wincanton earlier. Phare Isle seems to be running into form but Hayjack has a long absence to overcome and Baby Shine has become disappointing. BAKBENSCHER has a touch of class at this level and ran another fine race at Newbury after winning at Haydock. Though raised a further 2lb, Alan King's grey is fancied to get back on the winning trail.
Bakbenscher 10-3fav (10-6) Held up in rear, steady headway after 3 out, dsputing close 2nd from 2 out, every chance last, no extra final 150 yards, 3rd of 9, 3l behind African Gold (10-0) at Newbury 2m 5f hcp hdl (2) hvy in Dec.
Quaddick Lake (IRE) 12-1 (10-4) Held up behind, headway 2 out, soon chased leaders, ridden and stayed on to take 3rd flat, no impression with front pair, 3rd of 15, 7l behind Mr Watson (10-3) at Cheltenham 2m 1f hcp hdl (2) hvy in Jan.
Baby Shine (IRE) 6-1 (10-12) Held up mid-division, headway before 4 out, soon went 3rd, weakened before 2 out, 5th of 8, 36l behind Knockfierna (10-12) at Kempton 3m mrs lst hdl (1) sft in Nov.
Romeo Americo (IRE) 100-1 (9-11) Held up in mid-division on inside, headway approaching 3 out, went 3rd approaching next, stayed on to 2nd close home, no chance with winner, 2nd of 18, 3 1/2l behind Oscara Dara (11-0) at Kempton 2m 5f Listed hcp hdl (1) sft in Jan.
Un Bon P'tit Gars (FR) 11-4 (11-4) Made all, clear 2 out, stayed on well, won at Uttoxeter 2m NH nov hdl 4-6yo (4) sft in Oct beating Moscow Presents (10-12) by 9l, 11 ran.
Hayjack 10-11fav (10-12) Tracked leaders, headway to lead before 3 out, ridden when headed briefly before next, stayed on well from last, won at Uttoxeter 2m nh nov hdl (4) gs in Nov '11 beating Tarn Hows (10-12) by 4l, 15 ran.
Kingcora (FR) 33-1 (10-5) In touch on inside, ridden before 2 out, soon weakened, 9th of 15, 21l behind Mr Watson (10-3) at Cheltenham 2m 1f hcp hdl (2) hvy in Jan.
Art Professor (IRE) 14-1 (10-12) Chased leaders, effort 2 out, soon weakened, 7th of 12, 17l behind Araldur (10-11) at Sandown 2m 6f hcp hdl (2) sft in Dec.
Phare Isle (IRE) 9-2 (10-11) Held up in rear, headway 4 out, chased leaders next, led after 2 out, soon pressed, headed last, no extra, 2nd of 9, 1l behind Minella Special (10-8) at Fakenham 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) sft in Jan.
Teshali (IRE) 50-1 (10-0) Always in rear, never in contention, 10th of 12, 21l behind Lord Of House (9-9) at Sandown 2m hcp hdl 0-145 (2) hvy in Jan.