mistakes, always behind
mid-division, outpaced 3 out, never on terms
tracked leaders, mistake and rider lost iron 2nd, blundered and lost place 11th, soon behind, pulled up before 4 out
tracked leaders, blundered 8th, outpaced when mistake 4 out, soon weakened
mid-division, headway and in touch 4th, challenged 11th, lost place 4 out, soon weakened
in touch, lost place 11th, ridden and headway under pressure 3 out, stayed on strongly to chase winner flat, just failed
mid-division, headway to track winner 4 out, ridden 2 out, kept on same pace, lost 2nd flat
mid-division, weakened 4 out
held up towards rear when fell 10th
towards rear, blundered 5th, never dangerous
with leaders, led 7th, made rest, ridden 2 out, kept on flat, just held on
behind, reminders 6th, stayed on from 3 out, never nearer
tended to jump left, led to 7th, chased winner until lost place 11th, weakened from 3 out
Howard Johnson has his runners in good form post the break with bad weather but his runner here, Ellerslie George, will need to improve on previous form this season to trouble the judge and a better bet in a competitive contest looks to be WILL BE DONE, who gets the verdict ahead of Piraya. David Pipe's gelding has finished third in both starts this term in similarly competitive contests at Newbury and Kempton and he should be thereabouts again racing off the same mark as last time. Stable companion Tamarinbleu is ridden by Timmy Murphy but he has not been at his best this term and looks best left out of calculations. Or Bleu has yet to show a similar level of form to that which he showed last term and of more interest may be Kilcrea Castle. The eight-year-old has run to a decent level of form in Ireland over the last couple of seasons and has to be respected on his debut for Emma Lavelle, while the Alner's Miss Mitch made a highly encouraging return when chasing home Our Vic at Warwick last month and he too warrants close consideration. The vote though goes the way of Don McCain's Will Be Done, who had a confidence boosting success over hurdles on his reappearance at Leicester last month and he can follow up back over the larger obstacles.
Tamarinbleu (FR) 11-1 (11-10) Left in lead after 3rd, headed 7th, stayed well there until ridden, lost place quickly 10th, tailed off in rear, 13th of 17, well behind Poquelin (11-8) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs Grade 3 (4yo+) (1) sft in Dec.
Something Wells (FR) 20-1 (11-0) Held up in touch, fell 7th, in a race won by Deep Purple (11-10) at Huntingdon 2m 4f Grade 2 chs (4yo+) (1) gs in Dec, 7 ran.
Will Be Done (IRE) 11-10fav (10-9) Made all, clear last, stayed on well, won at Leicester 2m 4f nh nov hdl (3) sft in Dec beating Double Pride (10-12) by 9l, 12 ran.
Santa's Son (IRE) 17-2 (11-9) Tracked winner, under pressure 3 out, weakened next, 5th of 9, 17l behind Fix The Rib (11-7) at Ascot 2m 1f hcp chs 0-130 (2) gd in Nov.
Ellerslie George (IRE) 14-1 (10-2) Always prominent, led approaching 7th, clear before 10th, stayed on strongly, won at Wincanton 3m 1f listed hcp chs (1) gs in Nov beating The Tother One (11-9) by 1 1/2l, 18 ran.
Miss Mitch (IRE) 14-1 (10-9) Made most, ridden after 3 out, headed last, one pace, 2nd of 5, 2 1/2l behind Our Vic (10-12) at Warwick 3m chs (2) sft in Dec.
Kilcrea Castle (IRE) 14-1 (11-3) Tracked leaders, 3rd 4 out, ridden entering straight, 3rd 2 out, went 2nd before last, kept on without threatening winner run-in, 2nd of 6, 1 1/2l behind Casey Jones (11-10) at Punchestown 3m 1f chs Grade 3 in Oct.
Piraya (FR) 11-2fav (11-10) Chased leaders, led 4 out, ridden and headed 3 out, no chance with winner 2 out, lost 2nd after last, 3rd of 15, 12l behind Fortification (10-4) at Kempton 3m hcp chs 0-140 (2) gs in Dec.
Mount Sandel (IRE) 6-4fav (11-8) Led, driven and headed between last 2, one pace flat, 2nd of 4, 5l behind Le Beau Bai (11-5) at Carlisle 3m nov stks (3) hvy in Mar.
Or Bleu (FR) 5-1 (11-7) Chased leaders, went second before 4 out to 3 out, weakened soon after, 5th of 9, 17l behind Magic Sky (10-9) at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp chs 0-145 (2) hvy in Dec.
The Sawyer (BEL) 20-1 (11-8) In touch, ridden 12th, soon lost place, tailed off, 9th of 15, well behind Fortification (10-4) at Kempton 3m hcp chs 0-140 (2) gs in Dec.
Buck The Legend (IRE) 9-1 (11-4) Held up, under pressure before 9th, driven and struggling before 4 out, tailed off, 7th of 9, 40l behind Magic Sky (10-9) at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp chs 0-145 (2) hvy in Dec.
Mam Ratagan 8-1 (9-9) Raced keenly, led to 3rd, led after 6th, headed last, stayed on flat but no impression on winner, 2nd of 10, 1 1/4l behind Consigliere (11-2) at Newbury 2m 1f hcp chs 0-145 (2) gs in Nov.