River Dragon was a disappointing favourite at Market Rasen last week but today's slower surface may suit him better, while Fentara scored in heavy ground at Hexham before a below par effort on her latest start. This is tougher than the selling hurdle Blazing Buck won at Leicester in November and Teshali makes more appeal after a trio of placed efforts, while Chamirey reverts to hurdles on his debut for a new yard. PRET A THOU is another chaser back over the smaller obstacles and as he can race off a 15lb lower mark and handles testing ground, he gets the vote to get his head back in front.
Pret A Thou (FR) 14-1 (10-10) Led until mistake and headed 4th, chased leader until 7th, weakening when blundered 10th, soon in rear, tailed off when blundered last, last of 9, well behind Hold Fast (11-0) at Sandown 2m hcp chs (2) gs.
Chamirey (FR) 16-1 (11-3) Raced 4th of the 5, dropped to last from before 7 out, soon no extra, last of 5, well behind Quel Esprit (11-3) at Thurles 2m 2f chs Grade 3 (1) hvy.
Naiad du Misselot (FR) 12-1 (11-0) Held up towards rear, headway 9th, chased leaders approaching 3 out, not fluent 2 out, weakened flat, 5th of 21, 13l behind Ringaroses (11-0) at Aintree 3m hcp hdl Grade 3 (1) gd in Apr '10.
Teshali (IRE) 12-1 (10-13) Held up towards rear, headway approaching 5th, not fluent next, disputing 2nd 2 out, stayed on same pace flat, 3rd of 9, 4l behind Mountainous (11-4) at Ffos Las 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) sft.
Blazing Buck 12-1 (10-11) Tracked leaders in 3rd, ridden before 4 out, soon chased winner, kept on from last, always held, 2nd of 9, 6l behind Radetsky March (11-12) at Ffos Las 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) hvy in Dec.
Fentara 6-1 (11-12) Mid-division, headway approaching 4th, led and dived at 3 out, headed when jumped left and not fluent 2 out, no extra before last, 5th of 10, 23l behind Zefooha (10-4) at Sedgefield 2m 4f Mares Handicap Hurdle (0-120) (3yo+) (4) gs in Dec.
Quiamo Malta (FR) 66-1 (10-13) Towards rear, no chance when blundered 11th, tailed off, 5th of 11, well behind Rigadin De Beauchene (10-5) at Hereford 2m 5f hcp chs 0-120 (4) sft in Dec.
River Dragon (IRE) 9-2fav (11-4) Mid-division, headway 3 out, chased winner when ridden and edged left approaching next, no extra when lost 2nd last, weakened into 4th flat, 4th of 15, 9l behind Wise Move (11-3) at Market Rasen 2m 5f cond hcp hdl 0-1115 (4) gs.
Sandynow (IRE) 7-2 (11-4) Held up behind leaders, not fluent 5th, trying to challenge up inside after 7th when short of room, checked and lost momentum, ridden approaching last, soon beaten, not fluent at hurdle, 3rd of 5, 14l behind Code Blue (11-3) at Haydock 3m hcp hdl 0-110 (4) hvy in Dec.