last pair until mistake and dropped to last 3rd, never going after, reminder before 7th, tailed off 14th, went remote 4th towards finish
held up in 4th place, closer tracking leading pair soon after 3 out, went between horses to lead going well 2 out, 3 lengths clear last, idled run-in, driven out
chased leader, led after 8th until 11th, chased leader until approaching 14th, chased leading pair until after 3 out, rallied under pressure next, went 2nd and kept on run-in, not reach idling winner
tended to jump left, led until 8th, pressed leader, led again 11th until 3 out, chased leader until ridden approaching 2 out, weakened after 2 out, lost modest 4th towards finish
tracked leading pair, went 2nd approaching 14th, led 3 out until 2 out, chased winner, 3 lengths down and well held when blundered last, weakened into 3rd run-in
Paul Nicholls has had the winner in two of the last six years but Coup De Pinceau came up well short in this grade at Doncaster last time. Mister Malarky steps out of handicap company but may be suited by the way the race is run as three of these like to force the pace. Yalltari surprisingly fell at the first at Exeter last time as he’d looked a very assured jumper in his first two runs over fences. Now Mcginty beat a decent field to get off the mark at Chepstow but Phil Kirby’s raider TOP VILLE BEN has proved a revelation over fences so far and can extend his unbeaten record.
Coup De Pinceau (FR) 9-2 (11-4) Pressed winner from 2nd, pushed along before 5 out, ridden before next, no impression before 3 out, 3rd and beaten soon after, 3rd of 4, 18 3/4l behind Rocky's Treasure (11-1) at Doncaster 3m (1) gd in Dec.
Mister Malarky 11-4fav (11-10) Held up towards rear, closed 4th, mistake 7th, led 3 out, clear last, easily, won at Newbury 2m 7f hcp (3) gd in Jan beating Carlos Du Fruitier (11-7) by 13l, 9 ran.
Now Mcginty (IRE) 4-1 (10-12) Jumped slightly right, made all, clear flat, stayed on well, won at Chepstow 3m (3) gs in Jan beating De Rasher Counter (11-4) by 6l, 9 ran.
Top Ville Ben (IRE) 11-4 (11-6) Made all, jumped well, drew clear after 5 out, left well clear 3 out, easily, won at Wetherby 3m (4) gs in Dec beating Red Rising (11-0) by dist, 5 ran.
Yalltari 11-8fav (11-4) Prominent when fell 1st, at Exeter 3m (3) gs in Jan.