It's a bit of a surprise to find Ruby Walsh on board Pont Alexandre, an easy winner of his only start at Cholet in May, over the triple winner Reine Angevine though his mount is engaged in the Future Champions over Christmas so is obviously highly regarded. DON COSSACK will be all the rage here and it's not difficult to understand why. A Grade 2 winning bumper, he's sauntered home in both starts over timber and though meeting much better rivals looks to have enormous potential. Busty Brown had a couple of lengths to spare over the C&D three weeks ago and should confirm the form while Rule The World is progressing at a rate of knots and with stamina guaranteed will be suited by a strong gallop in testing conditions.
Busty Brown (IRE) 5-1 (11-3) (poor visibility) tracked leaders, 4th 4 out, ridden in 2nd after 2 out, led after last, stayed on well, won at Navan 2m 4f nov hdl G2 (1) hvy in Nov beating Seefood (11-3) by 2 1/2l, 7 ran.
Don Cossack (GER) 3-10fav (11-12) Tracked leaders in 3rd, went 2nd from 5 out, disputed lead when not fluent 3 out, led travelling well next, niggled along before last, stayed on well run-in, eased close home, impressive, won at Navan 2m mdn hdl hvy in Nov beating Sizing Gold (11-12) by 10l, 15 ran.
Rule The World 4-5fav (11-12) Tracked leaders in 4th, improved into 2nd 3 out, led and ridden clear after next, stayed on well from last, won at Navan 2m 4f nh nov hdl hvy beating Joncol (11-5) by 4 1/2l, 6 ran.
Seefood (IRE) 5-2 (11-3) (poor visibility) tracked leaders, 5th 4 out, ridden from 2 out, 3rd before last, went 2nd early run-in, kept on, 2nd of 7, 2 1/2l behind Busty Brown (11-3) at Navan 2m 4f nov hdl G2 (1) hvy in Nov.
Pont Alexandre (GER) Dai Jin gelding out of Panzella.
Reine Angevine (FR) Evensfav (11-2) Tracked leader in 2nd, led before 4 out, in control from before last and drew clear run-in, easily, won at Gowran Park 2m 4yo nov hdl hvy in Nov beating Blacklough (11-9) by 6l, 7 ran.