It's a slight surprise to see RATHCOR at this level following a ready handicap success at Huntingdon but he's taken to make the most of the opportunity. Ian Williams has his string in fine fettle and his gelding should have little trouble despatching these, despite the fact that 2m3f is very much a minimum and recent history suggests he's best caught fresh. Those fears are allayed by the lack of feasible opposition, headed by Hernando's Boy whose recent spin on the flat should've done him good. That said it was a rather tame display at Catterick and there has to be some doubt as to whether he's worthy of his official BHA rating. Kilshannig has a regressive profile so Liberty Seeker, who has three course wins in the bag and should have no trouble staying the trip, is the only other feared.
Kilshannig (IRE) 5-1 (11-6) Took keen hold, tracked leaders, mistake 8th, chased winner next, mistake 10th, lost 2nd 3 out, weakened approaching 2 out, 3rd of 4, 38l behind National Trust (11-0) at Southwell 3m clm hdl (4) gd.
Rathcor 4-1fav (11-5) Held up behind, headway approaching 3 out, led before next, wandered last, ridden out flat, won at Huntingdon 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-120 (3) gd in Oct beating Aohna (11-3) by 4l, 10 ran.
Hernando's Boy 6-1 (11-12) Held up, closed 11th, went 2nd full out, no chance with winner, 2nd of 4, 22l behind Pairc Na Gcapall (11-4) at Huntingdon 3m hcp chs 0-120 (3) gf in Apr '09.
Calfraz 12-1 (11-7) Held up in rear, hard ridden 4 out, soon no impression, 5th of 10, 41l behind Bollin Fiona (11-1) at Carlisle 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-105 (4) sft in Mar.
Liberty Seeker (FR) 3-1fav (10-11) Held up in mid-division, headway approaching 5th, led after 3 out, jumped left last, all out (no time taken), won at Towcester 2m sell hdl (5) gs beating Vivarini (11-3) by 4l, 10 ran.