King Fontaine was quite highly tried after winning twice over fences at Haydock a year ago. He can race off a 15lb lower mark over hurdles and can't be discounted here. Winter Alchemy is in good form and has twice gone close since beating the prolific Manger Hanagment at Perth in July while Scotswell was third off this mark at Aintree two weeks ago. SOPRANO hasn't run over hurdles since July but has won twice on the Flat since and again ran well when third at Musselburgh recently. He's a pound out of the handicap here but Henry Brooke takes off 5lb and Jim Goldie's charge can score again.
King Fontaine (IRE) 80-1 (10-6) Held up behind, mistake 6th (becher's brook), never dangerous, 11th of 40, well behind Ballabriggs (11-0) at Aintree 4m 4f hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Apr.
Ernst Blofeld (IRE) 40-1 (10-1) In touch in mid-division, mistake 2nd, ridden 9th, soon weakened, 10th of 14, 49l behind Rival D'estruval (10-0) at Aintree 3m hcp hdl (2) gd in Oct.
Caerlaverock (IRE) 9-2 (11-5) Prominent, jumped slowly 4 out, chased winner after 3 out, soon ridden, stayed on same pace from next, 2nd of 6, 5l behind Cool Mission (11-11) at Perth 3m hdl (4) gf in May '10.
Moghaayer 22-1 (11-6) Held up mid-division, pushed along 6th, ridden before 4 out, tailed off from 3 out, pulled up before last, in a race won by Harry Hunt (11-6) at Wetherby 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) gd in Oct, 13 ran.
The Shy Man (IRE) 12-1 (11-4) Tracked winner, weakened after 3 out, 7th of 10, well behind Stopped Out (11-12) at Kelso 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gd in Apr.
Scotswell 33-1 (10-9) Led to 4th, tracked leader, ridden after 2 out, kept on same pace under pressure flat, 3rd of 14, 9l behind Gormanstown Cuckoo (11-11) at Aintree 3m nov hcp hdl 0-120 (4) gd in Oct.
Winter Alchemy (IRE) 13-2 (11-4) Prominent, pushed along 5th, led approaching 2 out, headed close home, 2nd of 9, ns behind Lost Glory (11-12) at Huntingdon 3m 2f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gf in Oct.
More Equity 10-1 (11-0) Held up in rear, headway 9th, ridden and lost place 13th, behind 15th, tailed off, last of 9, well behind Badger Foot (10-12) at Kelso 3m 1f hcp chs 0-125 (3) gd in May.
Political Paddy 5-1 (10-10) Chased leaders, went 3rd before 3 out, weakened from 2 out, 4th of 10, 26l behind Stopped Out (11-12) at Kelso 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gd in Apr.
Double Default (IRE) 22-1 (10-6) Held up mid-division, weakened before 13th, mistake 14th, pulled up before next, in a race won by Horsham Lad (10-9) at Carlisle 3m hcp chs 0-125 (3) sft in Oct, 15 ran.
Soprano (GER) 9-2 (11-0) Held up towards rear, badly hampered 4th, headway before 4 out, ridden to challenge last, soon led, kept on well, won at Perth 3m hcp hdl 0-100 (4) gf in Jul beating A Bit Of Fun (11-12) by 4l, 9 ran.
Bollin Fiona 12-1 (9-5) Towards rear, pushed along before 7th, blundered and weakened before 4 out, 7th of 13, 28l behind Aibrean (11-11) at Ayr 3m hcp hdl 0-125 (3) gd in Apr.