JAMES has to concede weight all round but his overall form over regulation fences is stronger than that of any of these rivals, especially when a close fourth to Tammys Hill at Leopardstown, and he'll take some beating. Derek O'Connor's presence on board Firmount Gent suggests he's up for the challenge and he produced easily his best run so far behind Ace And Kings in a similar race at Tramore last time. Need To Know ran well in a maiden hunter chase at Cork last month then found the ground much too fast when favourite at Down Royal while the lightly-raced Ardmillan came good at just the fourth time of asking at Farmaclaffley and has plenty of improvement in him.
James (IRE) 5-4fav (11-3) Held up in rear, improved on inner 12th, 4th approaching straight, 3rd 2 out, no impression when pecked slightly last, kept on same pace run-in,, 3rd of 12, 6l behind Hix Fix (10-13) at Fairyhouse 3m 1f hts chs sft in Apr.
Anseanachai Cliste (IRE) 6-1 (12-2) Mid div, prog to ld 4out, hdd 2out, 2l 2nd & not fluent last, rallied flat & ld 25 yards out, won at Lismore 3m ire ptp in Mar beating Oscar Barton (12-2) by nk, 14 ran.
Ardmillan (IRE) 5-1 (12-2) Alw pr, ld aftr 2out, ko best from last, won at Farmaclaffley 3m ire ptp hvy in Feb beating Belmount (12-2) by 5l, 14 ran.
By The Banks (IRE) 16-1 (11-0) Mid-division, closer in 6th 6 out, 7th when unseated rider 3 out, in a race won by Aces And Kings (11-7) at Tramore 2m 6f hts chs in Apr, 15 ran.
Dawn's Catcher (IRE) 3-1 (12-2) Mid div, 5th 1/2way, rdn in 4l 3rd 3out, in tch in 4l 4th with placed prospects when fell last, in a race won by Our Benny (12-2) at Lisronagh 3m ire ptp gs in Apr, 9 ran.
Firmount Gent (IRE) 66-1 (11-4) Chased leaders, 4th halfway, progress into 2nd 4 out, ridden to challenge before 2 out, no extra in 2nd before last, kept on same pace, 2nd of 15, 5l behind Aces And Kings (11-7) at Tramore 2m 6f hts chs in Apr.
Gentle Cloud 2-1 (12-2) Tr ldr in 2nd, ld 2out, strongly pressed last, all out, won at Athlacca 3m ire ptp gs beating Wayupinthesky (12-2) by nk, 4 ran.
Need To Know (IRE) 15-8fav (11-1) Held up in last, ridden along and adrift in last at 11th, trailing when pulled up after 5 out, in a race won by Carmels Boy (11-2) at Down Royal 2m 7f hnt chs gf, 6 ran.
Shane Billy (IRE) 3-1 (12-2) Ld, 2l adv 1/2way, nrrw ld bef 2out, hdd appr straight, ko onepcd to line, 4th of 9, 9l behind River of Time (12-2) at Quakerstown 3m ire ptp gd in Apr.
Slighamach (IRE) 9-4 (11-5) Led, headed 7 out, 3rd 4 out, ridden and no extra after 3 out, 8th of 15, 40l behind Aces And Kings (11-7) at Tramore 2m 6f hts chs in Apr.
Smash Mor (IRE) 80-1 (11-6) Mid-division, 8th halfway, slightly hampered 6 out, ridden in 7th 2 out and no impression before last, 8th of 16, 20l behind Rohan's Pride (11-4) at Punchestown 2m 4f hnt chs.
Tellmeda (IRE) 3-1 (12-2) Mid div, 7th 1/2way, left 5th 4out, gng well in 3l 3rd appr 2out, not qckn in 5l 3rd apr str, went 2nd last, ko, 2nd of 14, 10l behind Court Of Law (12-2) at Laurencetown 3m ire ptp gs.
On The Grid (IRE) 5-2 (12-2) Ww in rr, steady prog from 4out, disp aftr 2out, j left last, ko late, 3rd of 6, 1 3/4l behind Pumped Up Kicks (12-2) at Largy 3m ire ptp gd.
Sycamore Drive 2-1 (11-11) Mid div, prog from 1/2way, cl 2nd frm 8th until 2l 2nd & clr of rmdr when lft well clr 4out, sow, won at Curraheen 3m ire ptp sft beating Divadoyle (11-11) by dis, 12 ran.
Chriss Bomb (IRE) 10-1 (11-6) Tr ldrs early, jnd ldr 3rd, drpd to 4th at 5th, 5th 1/2way, rdn in 2l 2nd appr 2out, no ex usp sn aftr, 5th of 9, 32l behind Phone Booth (12-2) at Laurencetown 3m ire ptp gs.