Irish Roe won this when it was last run in 2019 and is 7lb lower having failed to get her head in front since. Ask Paddington beat Shetland Bus at Hexham last month but Proschema is more interesting having taken a step up to 2m4f at Cheltenham in his stride. Sebastopol was only headed close home at Uttoxeter at the start of the month and any rain would bring Big Bad Bear into calculations. Courtandbould boasted very solid novice form in the autumn but hasn’t run since November. Back on good ground, GIOVANNI CHANGE has resumed his upward curve with back-to-back wins at Market Rasen. A further 10lb will test him but he looks one to follow as long as the rains stay away.
Courtandbould (IRE) 9-2 (11-0) Not always fluent and jumped left at times, chased clear leader (winner) from 1st, lost 2nd 4th, weakened after 2 out, 5th of 6, 33 3/4l behind For Pleasure (11-0) at Cheltenham 2m (1) sft in Nov.
Proschema (IRE) 7-2jfav (11-1) Towards rear, headway after 2 out, shaken up to make challenge at the last, soon led and kept on well, easy, won at Cheltenham 2m 4f hcp (2) gd in Apr beating Winds Of Fire (10-3) by 6 1/2l, 12 ran.
Sebastopol (IRE) 13-2 (11-9) Held up in last, headway going well when not fluent 3 out, pushed along to chase leader 2 out, ridden approaching last and led last, kept on run-in, headed dying strides, 2nd of 8, 1/2l behind Havana Hermano (10-11) at Uttoxeter 2m 4f hcp (3) gd in May.
Pileon (IRE) 22-1 (11-12) Mid-division, ridden after 2 out, no extra and weakened after the last, 8th of 12, 17 1/4l behind Proschema (11-1) at Cheltenham 2m 4f hcp (2) gd in Apr.
Ask Paddington (IRE) 3-1fav (11-12) Restrained in midfield, towards rear 4th, ridden and in touch 2 out, headway between horses to lead narrowly last, stayed on strongly flat, won at Hexham 2m 4f hcp (3) gd in Apr beating Shetland Bus (10-13) by 1 1/2l, 8 ran.
Black Mischief 6-4 (11-0) Pressed sole rival, led briefly after 4th, outpaced 5 out, kept on but no chance with easy winner before next, last of 2, 13l behind Solomon Grey (11-0) at Uttoxeter 2m (3) gd in May.
Giovanni Change (FR) 9-4jfav (11-0) Led into start, made all, unchallenged, won at Market Rasen 2m 7f hcp (3) gd in Apr beating Really Super (11-9) by 13l, 8 ran.
Goobinator (USA) 40-1 (10-12) Prominent, ridden along before 3 out where mistake, weakened, 10th of 22, dist behind Rowland Ward (10-1) at Aintree 2m hcp (2) gs in Apr.
No Comment 25-1 (11-4) Towards rear, niggled along after 2 out, weakened approaching the last, tailed off, 9th of 12, 24 1/2l behind Ask Dillon (11-12) at Cheltenham 3m hcp (2) gd in Apr.
Irish Roe (IRE) 10-1 (10-7) Held up towards rear, steady headway 3 out, ran on under pressure before last, one pace flat, 3rd of 9, 12 3/4l behind Bannixtown Glory (10-9) at Cheltenham 2m 4f hcp lst (1) gd in Apr.
Present Ranger (IRE) 16-1 (11-3) Tracked leaders on outside, effort 4 out, weakened after 3 out, 7th of 9, dist behind Valdez (12-0) at Hereford 2m 5f hcp (3) sft in Nov.
Shetland Bus (GER) 15-8fav (12-0) Chased leaders out wide, pushed along when left in 4th place 2 out, headway out wide before the last, stayed on same pace run-in, 4th of 7, 3 1/2l behind Instant Replay (11-11) at Sedgefield 2m 3f hcp (4) gd in May.
Flowery (IRE) 16-1 (10-10) Midfield, headway 7th, bumped 11th, pressed leader 12th, ridden before 3 out, weakened quickly before 2 out, 7th of 12, dist behind Two For Gold (11-6) at Warwick 2m 4f hcp (2) sft in Feb.
Big Bad Bear (IRE) 15-2 (11-9) Towards rear when fell 1st, at Perth 2m 4f hcp (3) gd in Apr.
Constantine Bay 25-1 (10-0) Held up in mid-division, last 8th, headway before last, stayed on flat, not trouble leaders, 5th of 12, 10 3/4l behind Skandiburg (10-0) at Cheltenham 3m hcp (2) sft in Jan.