Sedgefield winner Baltic Pathfinder failed to complete at the same track last time and Sharney Sike was expected to finish closer than fourth at Kelso having landing a double before that. EVERAARD did much better attempting to follow up his win at Doncaster when runner-up to Herdsman at Catterick. Dropping down a grade with a conditional's 5lb allowance in his favour, Philip Kirby's charge gets the vote. Dingo Bay and Gibbstown arrive in good form but both have a big hike in the weights to contend with after recent wins at Musselburgh and Ayr respectively.
Sharney Sike 5-1 (11-1) Held up in touch, headway 11th, chased leaders 3 out (usual 4 out), soon ridden, stayed on same pace in 4th from next, no impression, 4th of 9, 8l behind Rocking Blues (11-11) at Kelso 2m 5f hcp ch 0-110 (4) gs.
Baltic Pathfinder (IRE) 6-1 (11-3) Tracked leaders, pushed along after 8th, lost place 9th, weakened 10th, pulled up before 11th, in a race won by Mitchell's Way (11-12) at Sedgefield 2m 4f hcp chs 0-115 (4) sft, 8 ran.
Everaard (USA) 2-1 (10-0) Tracked leader until 5th, in touch in rear, ridden to go 3rd at 13th, chased winner 3 out, driven and closed on winner flat, 2nd of 5, 2 1/4l behind Herdsman (11-10) at Catterick 3m 1f hcp chs 0-140 (3) hvy in Feb.
War On (IRE) 25-1 (9-7) Held up mid-division, lost place after 4th, tailed off and pulled up after 14th, in a race won by Wyck Hill (11-0) at Newcastle 4m 1f hcp chs 0-150 (2) hvy in Feb, 16 ran.
Dingo Bay 15-8fav (11-5) Prominent, led 11th until 12th, soon ridden, stayed handy, challenged last, driven and no impression on winner towards finish, 2nd of 5, 3/4l behind Ben Akram (11-12) at Musselburgh 2m 4f hcp chs 0-100 (5) sft in Feb.
Gibbstown (IRE) 7-2 (11-1) Held up towards rear, headway before 5 out, went 2nd 4 out, led 2 out, soon clear, kept on well, won at Ayr 3m 1f cond hcp chs (5) hvy beating Soul Angel (10-7) by 16l, 6 ran.
Definite Appeal (IRE) 17-2 (10-9) Held up in rear, outpaced from