Shannon Springs was good value for his defeat of Pacha D'Oudairies in a beginners' chase at Worcester and Andrew Turnell's gelding has to be respected on his handicap debut over the larger obstacles off a mark of 122 but it is hard to get away from MARUFO, who gets the vote over Ngong Hills. Chris Grant's gelding has shown improved form of late, winning his last two starts here and at Wetherby, and he has to be strongly considered but a 4lb rise for his latest success when all out makes this more difficult. Crozan looks the pick of Sue Smith's two runners ahead of the reappearing Mill Side but both need to step up on recent form to trouble the judge. Fakima is capable but inconsistent, however, a market move for the 11-year-old would be of great interest. Tracey Kerr's All Rise was a narrow winner of a handicap at Hexham last month and 30lb rise for that is harsh in the extreme. A safer option then looks to be Marufo, who is less exposed than most of his rivals after just 11 career starts. Heather Dalton's gelding won well at Southwell last month and, off just a 4lb higher mark, he has solid claims of following up that success.
Water Taxi 33-1 (11-2) Chased leaders, outpaced 12th, 8th of 13, well behind Backstage (10-5) at Perth 3m hcp chs 0-145 (2) gf in May.
Iron Man (FR) 33-1 (10-0) Towards rear, struggling halfway, tailed off when pulled up after 12th (Canal Turn), in a race won by Irish Raptor (10-0) at Aintree 2m 5f hcp chs (2) gd in Apr, 29 ran.
Brooklyn Breeze (IRE) 9-2 (12-7) Prominent, lost place and in rear when blundered 11th, soon pulled up, in a race won by Holly Walk (10-4) at Aintree 3m 1f (3) gs in May, 14 ran.
Shannon Springs (IRE) 13-8 (10-11) Held up in rear, took keen hold, headway 4th, went 2nd 14th, ridden approaching 2 out, led before last, stayed on well flat, won at Worcester 2m 7f beg chase (4) gs in Jun beating Pacha D'Oudairies (10-11) by 4l, 9 ran.
Mill Side 17-2 (10-13) Tracked leaders, blundered 5th, outpaced 14th, no impression from 2 out, 4th of 11, 12l behind Antonius Caesar (11-5) at Carlisle 3m hcp chs 0-130 (3) gd in Apr.
Crozan (FR) 12-1 (11-7) Mid-division, jumped right 6th, driven 4 out, kept on from 2 out, never troubled leaders, 5th of 16, 14l behind Gallik Dawn (10-0) at Stratford 3m 4f hcp chs 0-125 (3) gd in May.
No Complaint (IRE) 8-1 (11-12) Led, jumped slowly 1st, headed 5th, pressed winner to 11th, lost place next, weakened approaching 3 out, 7th of 8, 39l behind Nelson's Spice (11-11) at Aintree 2m 4f hcp chs 0-125 (3) gd in Jun.
Mr Ed (IRE) 17-2 (11-7) Never dangerous, 7th of 14, 35l behind Southwestern (12-0) at Stratford 3m 4f hts chs (2) gd in May.
All Rise (IRE) 7-4fav (9-9) Made all, all out towards finish, won at Hexham 3m 1f hcp chs 0-115 (4) gf in Jun beating Catch The Perk (11-9) by shd, 9 ran.
Marufo (IRE) 5-1fav (11-9) Held up, headway after 12th, with leader 3 out, left in clear lead next, won at Southwell 3m 2f hcp chs 0-115 (4) gd in Jun beating Mandingo Chief (11-7) by 6l, 9 ran.
Ngong Hills (FR) 13-8fav (11-9) Held up, headway 6th, led 3 out, kept on well from last, won at Wetherby 2m 6f hcp chs 0-105 (4) gf in May beating Easby Mandarin (10-10) by 1/2l, 6 ran.
Fakima (IRE) 7-2fav (10-11) Held up rear, not fluent 3rd, pushed along after 7th, lost touch after 9th, tailed off when pulled up before last, in a race won by Cresswell Ruby (10-11) at Huntingdon 3m 2f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gd in Oct, 10 ran.
Kells Castle 9-2 (11-4) Chased leaders, 5th halfway, headway to lead after 4 out, ridden and headed before last, kept on one pace, 5th of 15, 7l behind Tower Of Lloyd (9-7) at Downpatrick 2m 7f hcp chs 0-102 gf in Jun.