This won't take much winning so connections will be hopeful that Hollins can go one better than over a longer trip here earlier in the month, despite a rather harsh 4lb rise in the weights. Russe Blanc ran his best race so far over fences when third at Carlisle but Accordion To Paddy needs more and One For The Boss and Phoenix Des Mottes are both out of the handicap. THORNCLIFFER is only 3lb higher than when successful at Wetherby a little under a year ago. He hasn't raced since March but it's probably worth taking a chance on his fitness against ordinary rivals.
Hollins 11-2 (9-7) Held up, not fluent 6th, headway 8th, went 2nd before last, every chance flat, just held, 2nd of 7, nk behind Duke Of Monmouth (11-4) at Uttoxeter 2m 6f hcp chs 0-120 (4) sft.
Russe Blanc (FR) 7-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, mistake 3rd, led before 3 out, ridden before 2 out, headed last, one pace, 3rd of 14, 3l behind Hollow Blue Sky (11-2) at Carlisle 2m 4f nov hcp chs 0-110 (4) sft in Oct.
Accordion To Paddy (IRE) 20-1 (10-12) Always towards rear, tailed off and pulled up before 4 out, in a race won by Cavite Eta (11-4) at Sedgefield 2m nov hcp chs 0-110 (4) gs in Oct, 12 ran.
Thorncliffer 11-4 (10-1) Prominent, led 3rd, mistake next, headed when mistake 8th, bumped 10th, mistake 11th, hampered 3 out, no impression on winner next, one pace, closing on 2nd towards finish, 3rd of 6, 5l behind Doubletoilntrouble (11-12) at Towcester 2m 6f nov hcp chs 0-100 (5) sft in Mar.
One For The Boss (IRE) 8-1 (10-0) Held up mid-division, led 12th, headed 2 out, soon weakened, jumped slow and badly last, soon pulled up, in a race won by Snuker (10-0) at Carlisle 3m 2f hcp chs 0-105 (4) hvy, 9 ran.
Phoenix Des Mottes (FR) 50-1 (9-9) Tracked leader, ridden after 10th, weakened from 2 out, 4th of 5, 46l behind Smart Catch (11-0) at Leicester 2m 7f hcp chs 0-105 (4) gf.