Even Stevens beat a handful of today's opposition when scoring over track and trip on New Year's Day. He's been upped 8lb for that success but Silken Express and Jiroft were a long way behind despite filling the places and Scott Dixon's charge has leading claims once again. Bedloe's Island just got the better of Equitania here last month and Woolfall Sovereign won the 2012 renewal of this off a 13lb lower mark. Whaileyy is a useful sprinter on his day but remains out of sorts, so a chance is taken on ALBEN STAR, beaten a length in this grade on the Polytrack last month and back on a winning mark if taking to the Fibresand.
Whaileyy (IRE) 8-1 (9-9) Prominent, lost place over 2f out, ridden and no impression from over 1f out, weakend inside final furlong, 10th of 11, 8l behind Perfect Pasture (9-0) at Lingfield 6f hcap (2) pol.
Woolfall Sovereign (IRE) 12-1 (9-7) Behind and outpaced, kept on from over 1f out, no impression, 8th of 12, 5l behind Forest Edge (9-5) at Wolverhampton 6f hcp (2) pol in Nov.
Even Stevens 12-1 (9-2) Prominent, hard driven over 2f out, effort over 1f out, kept on same pace final furlong, 4th of 6, 2 3/4l behind Caspian Prince (8-12) at Wolverhampton 5f hcp 0-95 (3) pol.
Jiroft (ITY) 16-1 (9-4) In touch on stands side rail, driven over 3f out, soon ridden, stayed on to take modest 3rd inside final furlong, no chance with front pair, 3rd of 11, 7l behind Even Stevens (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Alben Star (IRE) 15-8fav (9-7) Tracked leaders, ridden to chase leading pair over 1f out, kept on same pace under pressure inside final furlong, no impression, 3rd of 8, 1 1/4l behind Trinityelitedotcom (9-0) at Wolverhampton 6f 3yo hcp 0-105 (2) pol in Dec.
Equitania 4-1fav (9-5) Chased leaders, ridden 2f out, never on terms, weakened final furlong, 7th of 11, 11l behind Even Stevens (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Silken Express (IRE) 4-1fav (9-1) Chased leaders, ridden inside final 2f, stayed on to take 2nd over 1f out, no impression with winner, 2nd of 11, 3l behind Even Stevens (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Prohibit 16-1 (9-2) Prominent towards far side, lost place over 2f out, no impression from over 1f out, 6th of 11, 10l behind Even Stevens (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Doctor Parkes 20-1 (8-11) Tracked leaders, driven over 2f out, kept on same pace, no impression inside final furlong, 8th of 11, 4l behind Perfect Pasture (9-0) at Lingfield 6f hcap (2) pol.
Bedloe's Island (IRE) 33-1 (8-13) Tracked leaders, headway when not much room 1f out, ridden and ran on well inside final furlong, led final stride, won at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs in Dec beating Equitania (9-2) by hd, 14 ran.
Fratellino 20-1 (8-8) Soon outpaced, always behind, 8th of 11, 12l behind Even Stevens (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.