MEIRIG'S DREAM seemed to turn a corner in the spring and races off the same mark as when second to Marie Deja La at Fontwell in April. He's 3lb out of the handicap here but that shouldn't matter too much if he's fully wound-up and Philip Hobbs' gelding gets the nod ahead of Uttoxeter winner Ivebeenthinking and Benny The Swinger. The latter was beaten less than a length at Worcester last month but Royal Trooper gets little respite from the handicapper, though still receives weight from stablemate Nemo Spirit. Shadarpour offered more encouragement at Towcester last time and is preferred to Ashcott Boy of the others.
Nemo Spirit (IRE) 9-1 (11-7) Held up in 6th, pecked 3rd, strugging 3 out, tailed off, 8th of 9, 39l behind Walden Prince (10-8) at Sandown 2m Am hcp hdl 0-115 (4) sft in Mar.
Coup De Grace (IRE) 10-1 (10-0) In touch, headway to chase leaders approaching 3 out, one pace in 4th after 3 out, 5th of 11, 22l behind Kambis (11-2) at Fontwell 2m 2f hcp hdl 0-120 (4) gs in Apr.
Just When 66-1 (10-8) Tracked leaders, dropped to mid-division 4th, weakened after 3 out, 5th of 8, 42l behind Fair Trade (11-5) at Kempton 2m nh nov hdl (4) gd in May.
Rachael's Ruby 50-1 (10-0) Pulled hard, tracked leader, led 2nd, headed approaching 3 out, weakened rapidly and pulled up soon after 3 out, in a race won by Alfraamsey (11-4) at Plumpton 2m hcp hdl 0-135 (3) gf in Sep, 10 ran.
Royal Trooper (IRE) 11-8fav (11-8) Held up on outside, mistake 2nd, headway approaching 5th, led 2 out, mistake last, edged right and headed flat, no extra close home, 3rd of 9, 5l behind Pollystone (11-4) at Uttoxeter 2m hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gd in Sep.
Benny The Swinger (IRE) 25-1 (10-10) Chased leaders, not much room and switched left before 2 out, challenged last, soon led, hung left flat, headed close home, 2nd of 11, 3/4l behind Moscow Me (10-8) at Worcester 2m nov hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gd in Sep.
Ashcott Boy 11-2 (11-10) Tracked leader, ridden before 3 out, weakened next, tailed off, 7th of 9, 39l behind Oliver's Gold (11-1) at Uttoxeter 2m nov hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gd in Jul.
Shadarpour (IRE) 12-1 (11-10) Led to 5 out, left 2nd 2 out, ridden before last, soon lost 2nd, faded run-in, 4th of 8, 11l behind Theatrelands (11-11) at Towcester 2m hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gf.
Hubood 100-1 (10-5) Held up, hampered 1st and 4th, always towards rear, tailed off, 11th of 14, well behind Odin (10-12) at Stratford 2m nh nov hdl (4) gf in Jun.
Ivebeenthinking 25-1 (10-0) Held up towards rear, ridden and headway before last, left in lead last, kept on well, won at Uttoxeter 2m hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gs beating Kayfton Pete (11-11) by 5l, 16 ran.
Midnight Thomas 33-1 (10-12) Mid-division, took keen hold, headway 3rd, weakened after 2 out, 6th of 9, well behind Kettlewell (11-5) at Stratford 2m nh nov hdl (4) gs in Sep.
Night Of Passion (IRE) 33-1 (10-10) Held up towards rear, reminders after 5th, weakened after 4 out, 4th of 7, 35l behind Rosie Probert (11-8) at Uttoxeter 2m mrs nov hdl (4) gs in Jul.
Petrocelli 16-1 (10-2) In rear, pushed along 4th, struggling next, stayed on after being hampered 2 out, no chance with leaders, 6th of 13, 23l behind Pindar (10-5) at Worcester 2m cnd hcp hdl 0-95 (5) gf in Aug.
Meirig's Dream (IRE) 11-4 (10-6) Held up in touch, headway 3 out, went 2nd and every chance before next, soon ridden, kept on, held flat, 2nd of 9, 5l behind Marie Deja La (11-6) at Fontwell 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-95 (5) gs in Apr.