ZAFARQAND deserves to win a race and this looks his chance. Just beaten by Kingdom over this trip at Fairyhouse, he found 1m6f on yielding ground just taxing his stamina when run out of it at Leopardstown and everything points to him losing his maiden tag here. Benash, a winning bumper and hurdler, ran very well in a Galway handicap last week and if repeating will prove a threat but Miss Ekaterina hasn't been seen since April and could just need the run before going into handicaps. Back Off Mate may prove best of the remainder.
Back Off Mate (IRE) 16-1 (9-4) Dwelt, soon well off pace towards rear, closed to chase leaders straight, moderate 4th 2f out, no impression from over 1f out, kept on without threatening, 3rd of 8, 4l behind Absolutlyfantastic (9-7) at Killarney 1m 3f mdn stks gf in Jul.
Benash (IRE) 18-1 (9-8) Waited with towards rear off ordinary pace, improved under pressure to chase leaders straight, stayed on well without threatening, 3rd of 17, 4l behind Tin Town Boy (8-4) at Galway 1m 4f hcp 50-80 hvy.
Calgacus (IRE) (8-3) last of 14, well behind Malthouse (0-0) at Abu Dhabi(UAE) 1m 3f hcp gf in Nov.
Celtic Monarch (IRE) 25-1 (9-8) Dwelt a bit, always behind, 14th of 15, 30l behind One True Love (9-2) at Gowran Park 7f mdn stks gf in Jul.
Courageous Cry (IRE) 66-1 (11-5) Prominent and led after 2f, strongly pressed and headed approaching straight, no extra under 2f out, 7th of 18, 14l behind Union Dues (11-12) at Galway 1m 4f am mdn stks sft in Jul.
Softboiledsergeant (IRE) 33-1 (11-12) Rear of mid-division, no impression from 3 out, kept on one paced, 9th of 25, 43l behind Indevan (11-12) at Punchestown 2m 4f mdn hdl gf in May.
Zafarqand (IRE) 7-2 (9-0) Led, ridden and strongly pressed over 1f out, headed 150 yards out and dropped to 3rd, kept on same pace under pressure, 3rd of 7, 1 1/2l behind Leah Claire (9-9) at Leopardstown 1m 6f hcp gd in Jul.
Catchy Lass (IRE) 16-1 (9-8) Raced in 6th, headway on outer in 4th over 1f out, no impression on winner inside final furlong but kept on same pace to go 3rd closing stages, 3rd of 9, 5l behind Heirloom (9-5) at Dundalk 1m 3f mdn stks pol in Jul.
Gooey (IRE) 20-1 (8-6) Towards rear, under pressure 4f out, soon no impression, kept on same pace, 10th of 11, 40l behind Busted Tycoon (9-10) at Galway 2m hcp 50-70 hvy.
Miss Ekaterina (IRE) 5-2 (9-2) Tracked leaders, on terms from before straight, drifted a bit left and headed over 1f out, soon no impression in 3rd, 3rd of 9, 7l behind Curley Bill (9-8) at Gowran Park 1m 4f mdn stks gd in Apr.
Noshameinmygame (IRE) Clodovil mare out of Manazil.
Summer Star (IRE) 8-1 (11-2) Held up towards rear, ridden along 3f out, no impression straight, kept on one pace, 9th of 12, 8l behind Digeanta (11-4) at Leopardstown 1m 6f amat mdn stks gf in Jun.