This is a tricky puzzle to solve as the in-form Great Link carries a penalty for his latest win in a higher grade at Ayr last week. Rior has been racing over further but Hawaii Five Nil scored over 2m at Catterick and the second has won since. He's the type to keep improving now he's broken his duck but we'll take MINELLA RECEPTION to confirm the form of his narrow defeat of Daveron at Ludlow earlier this month and land this. He would have won more easily had he not kicked the final flight out of the ground. Fond Memory could be interesting in his first handicap but Whispering Harry is high enough in the weights now.
Great Link 7-1 (9-12) Held up in 3rd, headway before 3 out, led before next, ridden between last 2, kept on under pressure flat, won at Ayr 2m hcp hdl 0-135 (3) hvy beating Trucking Along (11-9) by 1 1/4l, 5 ran.
Hawaii Five Nil (IRE) 11-4fav (11-8) Prominent, joined leader 2 out, ridden to lead next, edged left and driven out, won at Catterick 2m hcp hdl 0-115 (4) hvy beating Short Takes (10-13) by 1 1/4l, 8 ran.
Minella Reception (IRE) 8-15fav (11-3) Made all, came towards stands' side 3 out, narrow advantage when not fluent last, ridden and hard pressed flat, just held on, won at Ludlow 2m NH mdn hdl (4) hvy beating Daveron (11-3) by hd, 10 ran.
Daveron (IRE) 4-1 (11-3) Raced wide, in touch, went 2nd 3 out, challenged last, ridden and every chance flat, kept on, just held, 2nd of 10, hd behind Minella Reception (11-3) at Ludlow 2m NH mdn hdl (4) hvy.
Fond Memory (IRE) 33-1 (10-12) Stood at start for 20 seconds before getting going, held up in rear, not fluent 3rd or 5th, soon pushed along, well beaten after 3 out, 7th of 9, 35l behind Ballyalton (11-8) at Cheltenham 2m 1f NH nov hdl 4-6yo (3) gd in Dec.
Rior (IRE) 8-1 (10-3) Took keen hold and held up in rear, headway on inside approaching 3 out, chased leading pair 2 out, lost 3rd before last, weakening when fell last, in a race won by Bygones Sovereign (10-8) at Ascot 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) sft in Dec, 12 ran.
Whispering Harry 13-2 (10-5) Led, not fluent 4th, headed 2 out, still upsides last, stayed on same pace flat, 3rd of 7, 4 1/2l behind Baltimore Rock (11-3) at Ludlow 2m hcp hdl 0-125 (3) hvy.