Stormion won this race last year and has gone in again twice since then. He's not easily dismissed despite a below par effort last time and neither is Overafrica, without a win so far but not badly treated back over hurdles. Al Shababiya and Acordingtoscript are harder to fancy but MINI THE MINX has every chance. It was heavy ground when she found Waywood Princess too good at Wetherby last week but she finished clear of the rest of the field and gets the nod to go one better today.
Overafrica (IRE) 3-1 (11-12) Led until jumped slowly 1st, with leaders, reminder 5th, ridden after 3 out, clear 3rd when weakened approaching next, tailed off, 3rd of 6, 42l behind Gorgehous Lliege (11-2) at Towcester 2m 6f nov hcp chs 0-100 (5) hvy in Dec.
Stormion (IRE) 6-1 (10-9) Chased leaders, reminder 2nd, outpaced 4 out, soon ridden, plugged on from 2 out, never on terms, 4th of 9, 43l behind Talkin Sence (10-12) at Kelso 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) hvy in Dec.
Al Shababiya (IRE) 16-1 (11-5) Jumped slowly 1st, chased leaders, reminder next, struggling 6th, tailed off 8th, pulled up before 3 out, in a race won by Gorgehous Lliege (11-2) at Towcester 2m 6f nov hcp chs 0-100 (5) hvy in Dec, 6 ran.
Acordingtoscript (IRE) 7-1 (10-13) Led until 3 out, no extra last, 5th of 16, 15l behind Rear Admiral (11-1) at Catterick 2m 3f con hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gs in Dec.
Mini The Minx (IRE) 20-1 (10-0) Soon pushed along in mid-division, in touch on outside 7th, ridden to challenge 3 out, kept on and every chance, one pace flat, 2nd of 15, 1 3/4l behind Waywood Princess (9-13) at Wetherby 3m 1f hcp hdl 0-95 (5) hvy in Dec.