MY BROTHER SYLVEST, withdrawn from a handicap at Market Rasen on Friday, has the best form of those with experience over fences having been placed three times in the autumn. We'll take a chance on his fitness and give him the vote though Roger Beantown will have benefited from a close-up fourth at Stratford last month and Double Handful wasn't beaten far over a shorter trip at Huntingdon on his fencing bow. Fearless Leader might need this but looked a promising prospect last year and Green Bank, High Storm and Roses Legend are others who could play a part.
Crescent Beach (IRE) 10-1 (10-10) Pressed leader, hampered 2nd, led next, ridden after 5th, headed before 3 out, no extra and hanging right next, 8th of 12, 22l behind Super Collider (11-6) at Worcester 2m nov clm hdl (5) gd.
Double Handful (GER) 15-8fav (10-12) Tracked leaders, mistake 4th, chased winner 6th until 2 out, stayed on flat, 3rd of 7, 2 1/4l behind Robbie (10-12) at Huntingdon 2m nov chs (4) gd in May.
Fearless Leader 12-1 (11-12) Mid-division, headway 7th, led after 3 out, jumped right 2 out and when not fluent last, driven out, won at Worcester 2m 4f nov hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gd in Jun '12 beating Kingsfold Flare (11-8) by 1 1/4l, 11 ran.
Green Bank (IRE) 4-1 (11-12) Led, not fluent 7th or 10th, headed last (normal 2 out), stayed on same pace, 3rd of 14, 4 1/2l behind Little Eaglet (10-11) at Newton Abbot 3m 3f hcp hdl 0-105 (4) gf.
High Storm (IRE) 20-1 (11-3) Always struggling in rear, mistake and ridden 5th, tailed off 4 out,, 15th of 21, well behind Buck Magic (11-5) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) gs in Nov.
My Brother Sylvest 10-1 (11-2) Led, mistake 3 out, ridden and headed 2 out, weakened soon after, well beaten when went left and blundered last, tailed off, 6th of 7, well behind Ulck Du Lin (11-5) at Ascot 2m 1f hcp chs 0-140 (3) hvy in Dec.
Officially Modern (IRE) 10-1 (11-0) Led, headed after 5th, chased winner until after 3 out, weakened next, 8th of 13, 41l behind Breaking Bits (11-0) at Fontwell 2m 2f NH mdn hdl (4) gd in May.
Polarbrook (IRE) 11-4 (11-0) Held up in touch, not fluent 4th or 6th, went 2nd after 9th, no chance with winner before 2 out, 2nd of 7, 42l behind Henri Parry Morgan (11-0) at Uttoxeter 3m mdn hdl (5) gf in May.
Roger Beantown (IRE) 7-1 (10-12) Held up in handy 5th, headway to 3rd 10th, went 2nd approaching 4 out, led and blundered next, ridden and headed approaching last, weakened flat, 4th of 8, 3l behind Harry Hunt (10-12) at Stratford 2m 4f nov chs (3) gd in May.
Roses Legend 8-1 (10-2) Tracked leaders, not fluent 5 out, soon outpaced, rallied 2 out, went 2nd flat, no impression on winner, dropped to 3rd towards finish, 3rd of 8, 3l behind Quel Ballistic (10-12) at Worcester 2m 7f hcp chs 0-120 (4) gd.
Theodore Lamb 8-1 (11-6) Held up, not fluent, behind from 5th, 6th of 7, 28l behind Arthur's Pass (11-7) at Leicester 2m nov hcp chs 0-115 (4) gs in Jan.