held up towards rear, smooth headway to track leaders turning in, driven and unable to quicken over 1f out, ridden and kept on under pressure inside final furlong, no impression with front pair, lost place near finish
held up in last pair, steady headway over 4f out, driven to chase leaders turning in, ridden over 1f out, kept on under pressure inside final furlong, just failed for 3rd, no impression with front pair
mid-division on outside, headway 4f out, driven to challenge turning in, kept on and every chance over 1f out until inside final furlong, no impression with front pair final 100 yards, just held on for 3rd
All but five of these were winners last time. Gordon Elliott has upstaged Willie Mullins in two of the last three but neither were owned by Gigginstown, which may not bode well for the chances of the mare Darling Daughter, a surprise winner of a Grade 2 at Leopardstown last month. Queens Brook won by 21 lengths at Gowran, however, and there should be more to come as that was her debut under Rules. Mullins is bidding for a 10th victory in the race this year and has a trio of runners with the grapevine suggesting APPRECIATE IT is the one to be on. Always cantering when justifying strong market support at Leopardstown last month, he can complete the hat-trick. Ferny Hollow won on the bridle at Fairyhouse but doesn’t have the same scope. Adrimel and Ask A Honey Bee are both unbeaten so far and may be the pick of the home team alongside Ascot winner Israel Champ, who has already shown a liking for Cheltenham. His stablemate Panic Attack looks the best of the four-year-olds.
Adrimel (FR) 6-5fav (11-9) Always close up, challenged over 3f out, ridden to lead over 1f out, ran on, won at Doncaster 2m 1f (5) sft in Feb beating The Edgar Wallace (11-2) by 1 1/4l, 14 ran.
Appreciate It (IRE) 11-10fav (11-11) Tracked leaders on inner, improved to lead travelling well 1 1/2f out, ridden clear 1f out, stayed on strongly final furlong, easily, impressive, won at Leopardstown 2m (1) Yielding in Feb beating Risk Factor (11-10) by 7 1/2l, 8 ran.
Ask A Honey Bee (IRE) 11-10fav (11-13) Made all, hard pressed 3f out, ridden 2f out, stayed on gamely and holding 2nd inside final furlong, won at Wetherby 2m (5) sft in Feb beating Solwara One (11-3) by 1 3/4l, 10 ran.
Brief Ambition 11-2 (11-3) Chased leaders on inside, pushed along over 2f out, ridden and went 2nd over 1f out, no chance with winner, 2nd of 9, 8l behind Ocean Wind (10-7) at Newbury 2m lst (1) gd in Feb.
Can You Call 20-1 (10-12) Held up towards rear on outside, 8th and plenty to do 3f out, driven and kept on final furlong, took 4th near finish, never nearer, 4th of 11, 7 1/2l behind Third Time Lucki (10-12) at Market Rasen 2m 1f mdn (5) sft in Dec.
Eskylane (IRE) 8-15fav (12-0) Made all, pressed 3 1/2f out, asserted 1 1/2f out, soon clear, shaken up briefly inside final furlong, easily, won at Navan 2m Soft - Heavy in Jan beating Don't Tell Allen (11-12) by 8 1/2l, 5 ran.
Ferny Hollow (IRE) 4-11fav (11-13) Held up towards rear, some headway on outer after halfway, 4th travelling well entering straight, smooth progress to lead 1 1/2f out, stayed on well, very easily, won at Fairyhouse 2m hvy in Feb beating On Eagles Wings (12-0) by 4 1/4l, 11 ran.
Five Bar Brian (IRE) 9-2 (11-12) Mid-division, 7th halfway, headway on inner to go 3rd 2f out, travelled well and led over 1f out, soon ridden and kept on well inside final furlong, won at Fairyhouse 2m sft in Jan beating Harry Alonzo (10-10) by 1 1/4l, 9 ran.
Good Time Jonny (IRE) 5-6fav (11-4) Tracked leaders, went 2nd 3f out, led on bit entering final furlong, quickened clear, won at Musselburgh 2m (4) gs in Jan beating Chuvelo (12-0) by 7l, 7 ran.
Israel Champ (IRE) 8-1 (11-8) Led, headed 11f out, tracked leader until led again over 3f out, ridden over 1f out, stayed on gamely, won at Ascot 2m lst (1) hvy in Dec beating Soaring Glory (11-4) by 1 3/4l, 9 ran.
Julies Stowaway (IRE) 5-1 (12-0) Close up, soon disputed lead, led over 6f out, joined before straight, soon bumped slightly and headed, led again inside final furlong and kept on best, won at Navan 2m hvy in Feb beating Delvino (11-6) by 1 1/2l, 11 ran.
Linelee King (FR) 5-6fav (11-5) Held up in mid-division, headway tracking leaders over 4f out, going well in 3rd 4f out, went 2nd over 2f out, led 2f out, ran on well, won at Sedgefield 2m 1f (5) sft in Jan beating Blazing Port (11-12) by 5 1/2l, 10 ran.
Mahler Allstar (IRE) 14-1 (12-0) Held up behind leaders, 6th halfway, ridden into 4th 2f out, challenged for 2nd over 1f out and drifted left, kept on same pace final furlong, 3rd of 9, 6 1/4l behind Appreciate It (12-0) at Leopardstown 2m 4f sft in Dec.
One True King (IRE) 8-1 (11-4) Made virtually all, clear final 2f, easily, won at Ludlow 1m 6f (4) sft in Jan beating Castle Robin (11-4) by 7 1/2l, 9 ran.
Snowpiercer (FR) 16-1 (11-0) Tracked winner until ridden 3f out, soon weakened, tailed off, 4th of 5, dist behind Chuvelo (11-7) at Bangor-on-Dee 2m 1f (5) hvy in Dec.
Third Time Lucki (IRE) 11-4fav (11-11) Held up in rear, headway on bit over 4f out, led over 1f out, clear towards finish, easily, won at Huntingdon 2m (5) sft in Jan beating Bothwell Bridge (11-4) by 3 3/4l, 15 ran.
Darling Daughter (IRE) 25-1 (11-6) Tracked leaders, 2nd 3f out, pushed along to lead over 2f out, soon ridden, stayed on well final furlong, won at Leopardstown 2m (1) Yielding in Feb beating Politesse (11-2) by 3 3/4l, 11 ran.
Queens Brook (IRE) 11-10fav (11-8) Tracked leaders on outer, 5th halfway, headway 4f out and led entering straight, pushed along 2f out, ridden and 3 lengths clear over 1f out, stayed on strongly, won at Gowran Park 2m 1f hvy in Feb beating Nelly's Money (11-9) by 21l, 17 ran.
The Glancing Queen (IRE) 5-1 (11-0) Tracked leaders, smooth headway to challenge over 2f out, led when shaken up well over 1f out, ridden inside final furlong, stayed on well final 120 yards, won at Aintree 2m 1f (1) sft in Apr beating Minella Melody (11-0) by 2 1/4l, 20 ran.
Audacity 8-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, went 2nd 12f out until 7f out, 2nd again over 4f out, weakened 3f out, last of 9, 25 1/4l behind Ocean Wind (10-7) at Newbury 2m lst (1) gd in Feb.
Let Me Entertain U 20-1 (10-7) Chased leaders, every chance over 2f out, hung left over 1f out, led approaching final furlong, ran on, won at Exeter 2m 1f (5) hvy in Feb beating Mountain Leopard (11-9) by 2l, 11 ran.
Ocean Wind 7-2 (10-7) Held up in last trio, smooth headway on outside chasing leaders over 3f out, led over 2f out, clear final 2f, very easily, won at Newbury 2m lst (1) gd in Feb beating Brief Ambition (11-3) by 8l, 9 ran.
Panic Attack (IRE) 5-2fav (10-3) Held up towards rear, headway over 4f out, led over 2f out, clear over 1f out, easily, won at Market Rasen 2m 1f lst (1) sft in Jan beating The Getaway Star (11-0) by 10l, 9 ran.