Blue Wave was well beaten back on Turf at Ripon but still finished ahead of the tailed off De Rigeur, who is also better on the all-weather. Dark Ranger was second on the July course here last June but is 6lb higher, though ran well on his return to action at Kempton when Highland Castle finished last. Van Percy was fifth over 1m4f here at the start of the month but his stamina is suspect over this longer trip. It's almost two years since TROPICAL BEAT last won a race but he was second off this mark at Musselburgh last year and has every chance of going one better on that form. Expert Fighter won here as a three-year-old but will need some help from the handicapper if he's to get his head in front again.
Thecornishcockney 6-1 (9-2) Went left start, soon switched right, in rear, ran out over 8f out, in a race won by Castilo Del Diablo (9-2) at Kempton 2m cnd stks (4yo+) (2) pol in Mar, 10 ran.
Tropical Beat 10-1 (9-3) In rear, hampered 4f out, never a factor, 5th of 10, 9l behind Caucus (9-6) at Newmarket 2m Listed stks 3yo (1) gd in Sep.
Blue Wave (IRE) 14-1 (8-13) Tracked leaders, driven 3f out, lost place 2f out, soon weakened, 8th of 9, 21l behind Battalion (9-0) at Ripon 1m 4f hcp 0-112 (2) gd in Apr.
De Rigueur 5-1 (8-8) Stumbled start, mid-division, driven over 3f out, never on terms, weakened over 1f out, last of 9, 37l behind Battalion (9-0) at Ripon 1m 4f hcp 0-112 (2) gd in Apr.
Expert Fighter (USA) 3-1fav (9-13) Pulled hard tracking leader, led over 4f out, headed over 2f out, kept on same pace final furlong, 2nd of 10, 4l behind Bin Singspiel (8-7) at Wolverhampton 1m 6f hcp (2) pol in Oct.
Highland Castle 4-1 (9-12) Led and soon clear, reduced lead halfway, ridden and headed approaching final 2f, soon weakened, tailed off, last of 8, well behind Presto Volante (8-11) at Kempton 2m hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Apr.
Van Percy 13-2 (8-12) In rear, headway approaching 2f out, ridden and kept on one pace final furlong, 5th of 14, 3 1/2l behind Mighty Yar (9-0) at Newmarket 1m 4f hcp 0-105 (2) gf.
Dark Ranger 12-1 (9-0) In touch, headway entering final 2f, ridden to chase winner approaching final furlong, no impression final furlong, 2nd of 8, 7l behind Presto Volante (8-11) at Kempton 2m hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Apr.
Palazzo Bianco 20-1 (9-0) Towards rear, reminders 7f out, soon lost touch, tailed off, last of 9, well behind Gabrial's Star (9-5) at Chester 1m 4f app hcp (0-85) (4yo+) (4) sft.