It's four years since Halla San last won a race though he's probably still capable of producing a good run on the Flat. Priceless Art is in fine form and won a Flat maiden on this track in December. He's also been successful twice in bumpers here so must be on the short-list with his preference for the surface such a big advantage. The youngster ARCTIC REACH is progressing very nicely over timber, however, and gained an impressive victory when last seen in September. This should prove a nice confidence-booster for the Triumph Hurdle and he gets the nod. Abergavenny produced a superb run when third in the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham and won on Polytrack as a youngster and the once-classy Afsoun still has plenty of pace as he showed when slamming a field of handicappers over hurdles at Newcastle in December.
Abergavenny 12-1 (10-2) Held up in touch, weakened approaching 3 out, 10th of 16, 9l behind Raya Star (10-1) at Ascot 2m Listed hcp hdl (1) sft in Dec.
Afsoun (FR) 14-1 (11-2) Chased leaders, ridden after 3 out, soon weakened, 12th of 15, 30l behind Ciceron (10-12) at Sandown 2m hcp hdl 0-145 (2) sft in Jan.
Bedouin Bay 25-1 (11-9) Pressed leader, led 4 out, driven and headed before 2 out, kept on same pace approaching last, weakened flat, 6th of 16, 18l behind Hit The Headlines (10-12) at Huntingdon 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gs in Dec.
Bivouac (UAE) 4-1 (11-0) In touch in mid-division, headway over 3f out, chased winner 3f out, ridden 2f out, kept on same pace inside final furlong, 2nd of 14, 2 1/2l behind Recession Proof (11-0) at Southwell 2m n h flat (4) std in Dec '10.
Galley Slave (IRE) 66-1 (10-6) Mid-division, lost place 6th, soon behind, pulled up 4 out, in a race won by Lady Karabaya (11-0) at Fakenham 2m 7f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) sft in Jan, 7 ran.
Halla San 14-1 (10-12) Tracked leaders, in 3rd when blundered and unseated rider 4 out, in a race won by Film Festival (11-4) at Doncaster 2m 3f nov chs (3) gd in Mar, 7 ran.
Priceless Art (IRE) 11-8fav (11-5) With leader, led before 2 out, ridden before last, kept on, driven out, won at Carlisle 2m 3f nov hdl (4) gd in Oct beating Ravens Secret (10-2) by 3/4l, 9 ran.
Record Breaker (IRE) 16-1 (11-4) Prominent, ridden after 3 out, soon weakened, 6th of 11, 26l behind Loose Chips (11-4) at Towcester 2m nh nov hdl (4) sft in Jan.
River Dragon (IRE) 10-3 (10-2) Held up in rear, headway after 7th, went 3rd after 3 out, not able to trouble leaders, 3rd of 9, 8l behind Sandynow (10-0) at Uttoxeter 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) hvy in Jan.
Taikoo 3-1 (11-6) Prominent, led 3rd, headed after next, jumped slowly and lost place 6th, soon weakened, pulled up after next, in a race won by Simply Ben (10-13) at Ffos Las 2m 6f mdn hdl (5) sft in Jan, 11 ran.
Union Island (IRE) 3-1 (11-9) Chased leading pair, mistake 3rd, weakened quickly on long run to last, tailed off, 6th of 9, well behind Mr Muddle (10-7) at Folkestone 2m 1f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Feb '11.
Winchester Red 66-1 (10-4) Bolted before start, tracked leaders, saddle soon slipped, not fluent 2nd, lost place 4th, pulled up approaching 5th, in a race won by Diamond Mm (10-10) at Worcester 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gd in Jul, 12 ran.
Arctic Reach 5-1 (11-6) Tracked leaders, led before 5th, clear before 2 out, eased run-in, won at Market Rasen 2m 1f 3yo hdl (2) gd in Sep beating Hi Note (10-10) by 14l, 9 ran.
Chippy 200-1 (11-0) Took keen hold, chased leader, mistake 3rd, went left and led narrowly 5th, went badly left again and headed next, driven and weakened soon after, poor 8th when pulled up soon after 3 out, in a race won by Scoglio (10-11) at Wetherby 2m 4yo mdn hdl (5) sft in Jan, 11 ran.