Black River was travelling strongly when falling on his chasing debut here four weeks ago. He's worth following but this may be a confidence-booster. Stopped Out made all on soft ground at Bangor last month but is 5lb higher here and WHISPER has run well enough in both starts this season to suggest he's due a change of luck. He is proven on heavy going whereas today's ground may be too testing for Pateese, runner-up over a longer trip here last time. Kazlian needs to prove his stamina and was tailed off in a recent pipe-opener on Polytrack.
Stopped Out 13-2 (11-10) Made all, clear before last, kept on well, won at Bangor 2m 4f hcp hdl (2) sft in Nov beating Shotavodka (11-9) by 1 3/4l, 8 ran.
Whisper (FR) 5-2fav (11-10) Held up in mid-division, headway tracking leaders when slightly hampered approaching 3 out, chased leaders and mistake 2 out, ridden disputing lead between last 2, one pace when lost 2nd going to the last, kept on same pace flat, 3rd of 16, 9l behind Saphir Du Rheu (11-0) at Sandown 2m 6f hcp hdl (2) gs.
Pateese (FR) 33-1 (11-2) Held up mid-division, headway before 3 out, led 2 out, blundered last, ridden and hung right run-in, soon headed, kept on towards finish, 2nd of 21, 1 1/2l behind Mickie (11-3) at Newbury 3m hcp hdl 0-140 (3) gs in Nov.
Kazlian (FR) 10-1 (11-3) Chased leader, led 3rd until 3 out, led again well before next, clear before blundered 2 out, reduced lead approaching last, headed flat, no chance with winner, lost 2nd final 135 yards, 3rd of 19, 7l behind First Avenue (10-5) at Sandown 2m lst hcp hdl (0-150) (1) hvy in Mar.
Black River (FR) 5-4fav (10-11) Tracked leading pair, went 2nd 5th, travelling well when fell 8th, in a race won by Valdez (11-5) at Newbury 2m 1f (3) gd in Nov, 5 ran.