ARGANIL has now won three of his last four starts and is fancied to win again at the main expense of Soopacal. Kevin Ryan's progressive three-year-old has now won half of his career starts and he showed a good attitude to win at Great Leighs in October when challenged late on. What you see is what you get from this gutsy front-runner and he is taken to defy this 3lb higher mark. There are several course and distance winners in the line-up, of which Soopacal may be the main danger. Bryan Smart has his horses in good form and a break may have done this Caption Rio gelding some good. Luscivious ran well last time out but his better form has come at that track Southwell, so a bigger danger could be The Jobber who is very well-treated on old form. Matsunosuke needs the breaks given his style of racing, whilst Fyodor and Vhujon are decent but not the most consistent. A tricky race, but preference is for Arganil.
Fyodor (IRE) 11-1 (9-0) Held up far side, ridden along halfway, weakened over 1f, 8th of 14, 4l behind Judd Street (9-4) at Haydock 5f hcp 0-100 (2) gf in Sept.
Soopacal (IRE) 16-1 (9-4) Tracked leaders, keen hold, every chance over 1f out, weakened final furlong, 4th of 11, 6l behind Aye Aye Digby (8-10) at Nottingham 6f 3yo hcp (3) gd in May.
Matsunosuke 7-1 (9-4) Outpaced and soon chased along, headway over 1f out, stayed on final furlong, 3rd of 12, 4 1/2l behind How's She Cuttin' (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Bertoliver 12-1 (9-2) Chased leaders, effort halfway, one pace until weakened inside final furlong, 6th of 12, 6l behind How's She Cuttin' (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Arganil (USA) 10-3 (9-3) Made all, ridden over 1f out, stayed on well, won at Great Leighs 5f hcp 0-85 (4) pol in Oct beating Piscean (9-2) by a nk, 9 ran.
The Jobber (IRE) 25-1 (8-6) In touch, ridden halfway, no impression, 12th of 20, 3 1/2l behind Judge 'n Jury (9-6) at Doncaster 5f hcp 0-100 (2) gd in Oct.
Vhujon (IRE) 20-1 (8-12) Slowly into stride in rear, pushed along over 1f out, never nearer, 9th of 12, 4l behind Beat The Bell (8-5) at Great Leighs 6f hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Oct.
Luscivious 12-1 (8-6) Outpaced and soon ridden along, headway over 1f, kept on final furlong, 2nd of 12, 3l behind How's She Cuttin' (8-8) at Southwell 5f hcp 0-95 (3) fbs.
Almaty Express 20-1 (9-4) Chased leaders 2f, 10th of 11, 13l behind Harry Up (9-2) at W'hampton 5f hcp 0-85 (4) pol.
Harbour Blues 20-1 (9-4) Led, ridden and headed 2f out, edged left when weakening approaching final furlong, 9th of 11, 12l behind Irish Pearl (9-1) at Southwell 6f hcp 0-85 (4) fbs in Oct.