Jonjo O'Neill's KNOCK EM DEAD has shown improved form in winning his last two starts and, despite having been raised 8lbs for his latest success at Newton Abbot, he is taken to complete a hat-trick with the main dangers rated as Phone In and Ja Myford. Alison Thorpe's gelding is less exposed than most of these after just two starts over hurdles and he could be of interest off what looks a fair mark. Michael Murphy's Margarets Girl remains a maiden but has shown some promise and he has to be respected on his British debut. McQueen has paid the penalty for his wins last year and of more interest may be Roy Brotherton's Phone In, who has dropped to a fair mark. Knock Em Dead is the form horse of the race though and Jonjo O'Neill's gelding looks the one to beat.
Dune Raider (USA) 14-1 (11-5) Mistake 1st, soon behind, tailed off, 14th of 16, well behind Deadline (11-7) at Fontwell 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gd.
Knock Em Dead (IRE) 4-1 (11-5) Not always fluent, held up in touch, steady headway to track leader from 4 out, challenged and upsides from 2 out, hard driven and stayed on well to assert last 100 yards, won at Newton Abbot 3m 3f hcp hdl 0-105 (4) sft in Aug beating Arctic Shadow (11-12) by 1 3/4l, 8 ran.
McQueen (IRE) 12-1 (9-11) Pressed leader, led approaching 4th, terrible blunder and headed 5th, not recover after, weakened after next, 4th of 7, 18l behind Rajeh (10-11) at Market Rasen 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) gd in Aug.
Ja Myford 10-1 (11-0) Tracked leaders, under pressure 4 out, soon weakened, 3rd of 12, 28l behind Word Of Warning (11-0) at Bangor 2m 4f mdn hdl (4) gd in Aug.
Phone In 13-2 (11-7) In touch, outpaced last, weakened 2 out, 5th of 8, 24l behind Solway Bay (10-6) at Market Rasen 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gd in Aug.
Fortification (USA) 20-1 (10-13) Pressed leader, led after 9th, headed after 3 out, weakened approaching last, 4th of 8, 9l behind Share Option (10-7) at Uttoxeter 3m cnd sll hdl (5) gd in May.
Benny The Piler (IRE) 16-1 (11-8) Chased leader to 4th, ridden 8th, weakened approaching 3 out, 5th of 7, 24l behind Arctic Shadow (11-5) at Market Rasen 2m 6f nov hcp chs 0-110 (4) gd in Jul.
Michaels Dream (IRE) 3-1 (10-7) Chased leader, led 3 out, soon headed, weakened from next, 4th of 7, 38l behind Heez A Steel (11-5) at Cartmel 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) hvy in Aug.
Margarets Girl (IRE) 20-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, 5th halfway, 8th and still in touch approaching 2 out, 5th but no impression on leaders last, kept on, 6th of 16, 15l behind Imperial Belle (11-0) at Wexford 2m 2f cond hcp hdl 80-95 in Aug.
Young Tot (IRE) 25-1 (11-12) Always in rear, 12th of 14, well behind Spanish Cruise (11-0) at Wincanton 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-100 (4) gd in Mar.
Tandori 17-2 (10-2) Led until headed 4 out, weakened rapidly, well behind when pulled up after 3 out, in a race won by Bubbs (10-5) at Newton Abbot 2m 6f sell hdl (5) sft in Aug, 10 ran.