How's My Friend, only beaten a length in a handicap over 3m1f here 11 day ago, is never going to get a better chance to open his account under Rules despite the drop in distance. He makes more appeal than Donald McCain's Realignment, who was beaten in a seller over hurdles at Hexham earlier this month and appears to be regressing. But JOCK WILKINSON is a rare runner here for Charlie Swan and, having changed hands for £60,000 in the November sales, should start to show his worth now tackling fences as he's already been placed between the flags. Border Station has made the frame in four of his five starts over fences but is still a maiden under Rules after 15 attempts.
Articulate (IRE) 3-1 (12-0) in a race won by Upton Harriet (11-7) at Bitterley 3m ptp gd in Apr, 8 ran.
Bennys Well (IRE) 16-1 (10-13) Chased leader, led briefly 4 out, weakened well before next, tailed off, 7th of 9, well behind South Stack (10-8) at Exeter 2m 3f nov hcp hdl 0-100 (5) hvy.
Bigasabishop (IRE) 50-1 (11-9) Held up in last trio, steady headway 10th, went 3rd 3 out, stayed on same pace from next, lost 3rd post, 4th of 9, 4l behind Commander Kev (11-7) at Folkestone 2m 5f hts chs (6) gd.
Border Station (IRE) 11-1 (10-11) Chased leading pair, travelling well in 2nd 4 out, held when went right and hit 2 out, 2nd of 6, 27l behind Midnight Sail (11-0) at Fontwell 2m 6f nov chs (4) gs in Apr.
How's D Strawboss (IRE) 50-1 (10-9) Tracked leader, ridden to challenge after 4 out, soon weakened, fell 2 out, in a race won by Galway Jack (11-0) at Southwell 3m beg chase (5) sft in Apr, 4 ran.
How's My Friend 4-1fav (11-5) Held up in rear, headway when blundered 3 out, soon ridden, headway from 2 out, forced to switch right run-in, kept on to chase winner towards finish, 2nd of 8, 1l behind Notabotheronme (10-11) at Towcester 3m hcp ch 0-110 (4) sft.
Jock Wilkinson (IRE) 33-1 (11-12) Tracked leaders, 10th approaching straight, soon no impression, 15th of 24, well behind Casimir Road (11-2) at Cork 2m mdn hdl in Apr.
Realignment (IRE) 7-2 (10-12) Led, headed after 2 out, soon weakened, 4th of 8, 31l behind Nelson du Ronceray (10-10) at Hexham 2m sell hdl (5) sft.
Rustic John 100-1 (11-5) Mid-division, hit 1st, jumped right next, headway 4 out, never on terms, went 3rd latter stages, no chance with front pair, 3rd of 13, 40l behind Rash Move (11-7) at Cheltenham 2m hts chs (5) sft.