Tote Win: £0.00 Tote Place: ££13.80,£4.60,£3.00
Straight Forecast: £0.00 Exacta: £0.00 Trifecta: £0.00 Swingers: 1&2:£114.80 2&3:£20.20 1&3:£92.30
Jackpot: £64,597.28 carried forward to Market Rasen, 23rd Jan
Placepot: £18.50, Pool: £161866.12, 6374.97 winning tickets
Quadpot: £11.10, Pool: £10388.97, 687.36 winning tickets
The first two home were held up in rear for much of the race suggesting that this was run at a true pace. TIGER O'TOOLE had done most of his racing on faster surfaces but wasn't disgraced behind Mille Chief on heavy ground at Sandown earlier on the month on his first run since finishing in midfield behind Overturn in the Galway Hurdle. He had done little to suggest that he could land a race as competitive as this but made smooth progress from last to come with a well timed challenge having jumped the last and kept on well to repel the persistent Walkon. Walkon has always been held in high regard and looked well handicapped on his second place in the 2009 Triumph Hurdle but was expected to need this first run since April of that year. He was held up in rear, made smooth progress through the field at halfway and kept on well to the line. Alan King has always felt that he was a Champion Hurdle horse and that is his intended target provided that he comes out of this race in one piece but he has a lot of improvement to make in order to bridge the gap but this run should have delighted connections. Lough Derg adopted his customary position towards the head of affairs at a track that he has always saved his best for; he had looked on the way back behind Big Buck's at Newbury and ran a fine race but a bad mistake at the last put paid to his chance. He was 13lbs lower than at the start of last season but can be expected to face a rise back up in the weights following this fine run and will not be easy to place. Notus De La Tour was the morning gamble of the race; he raced towards the rear on the outside of the field in the early stages of the contest before being switched to the inside but lacked the pace to get competitive and stayed on through beaten horses. He has the totesport Trophy at Newbury next month as his next objective and ran a decent trial for that valuable contest on this seasonal reappearance. Shalone had got to within a short-head of Diamond Harry in a bumper in 2008 and had been absent since December 2009. He made a couple of notable mistakes but this was an encouraging return and a step back up in trip looks sure to suit as he lacked the pace to get on terms. Soldatino appeared to be on a fair mark on his Triumph Hurdle defeat of Barizan but had been very keen on his way down to the post. He wasn't as fluent as usual at one or two flights but was moved up through the field by Barry Geraghty after one of those mistakes and made smooth progress to move on to the heels of the leaders with three to jump. He was travelling strongly into the straight before weakening on this seasonal reappearance and was expected to need the run; this was encouraging and it's to be hoped that this run takes some of the freshness out of him. Frascati Park has progressed well in novice events but was found wanting in this grade having been taken on for the lead. Sire Collonges is regarded as a horse for the future by his connections and it would be surprising if this is as good as he is. Lucaindubai and Sophies Trophy were both in the process of running decent races when departing at the second last with the latter paying another compliment to Mille Chief who had brushed him aside at Sandown whilst the former has few miles on the clock and can win again when his sights are lowered.