The Absent Mare has her first outing since winning easily at Kempton in November and is 9lb higher today, while Ministry is now on a 10lb higher mark than when scoring at the same track in September. The latter's stablemate KAHFRE makes more appeal as he's only a couple of pounds higher than when winning last year's renewal and this looks a bit easier than his recent tasks. Maison Brillet has claims on last month's second over C&D, but Belle Josephine was a big disappointment over 1m4f here on her handicap debut having won at the first time of asking at Wolverhampton and Cotton Grass has been well beaten over hurdles of late.
Kahfre 25-1 (9-4) Dwelt, held up towards rear, ridden inside final 6f, plugged on inside final furlong, never going pace to threaten, 8th of 11, 8l behind Rasheed (9-6) at Kempton 2m hcp 0-75 (5) pol.
Maison Brillet (IRE) 8-1 (9-7) Held up in touch, headway to 3rd 3f out, went 2nd well over 1f out, ridden and edged left over 1f out, stayed on same pace, no chance with winner, 2nd of 8, 3 1/2l behind Face Value (8-12) at Wolverhampton 1m 6f hacp 0-70 (5) pol.
Belle Josephine 6-5fav (8-7) Outpaced in rear, under pressure over 2f out, stayed on to go moderate 3rd over 1f out, 3rd of 5, 14l behind Crunched (9-3) at Lingfield 1m 4f hcp 0-85 (4) pol.
Ministry 11-8fav (9-2) Held up in touch, led well over 3f out, ridden and headed over 1f out, kept on, 2nd of 9, 4 1/2l behind Resplendent Ace (9-9) at Wolverhampton 2m hcp (0-65) (6) pol in Sep.
The Absent Mare 13-2 (8-12) Steadied start, held up in last place, headway over 1f out, ridden to lead entering final furlong, readily, won at Kempton 2m hcp 0-60 (6) pol in Nov beating Shalambar (10-1) by 4l, 8 ran.
Cotton Grass 9-2 (9-7) Led, ridden and headed over 2f out, kept on same pace, 3rd of 4, 4l behind Hal Of A Lover (9-0) at Musselburgh 1m 5f 3yo hcp 0-65 (6) gs in Jul.