tracked leaders in 3rd, challenged under 2f out, led over 1f out and edged slightly right, strongly pressed and kept on well final furlong, headed close home, finished 2nd, demonted to 3rd
STELLAR MASS, who had problems winning a maiden in his early career, finally got off the mark over the track and trip before landing a tough Down Royal handicap. He then proceeded to finish third in the Irish Derby and has won at Listed and Group 3 level subsequently. He was nowhere near his best at Leopardstown last time and should return to winning ways. Alveena has been competing with some success in tough handicaps though his best run came when third in a Group 2 here in June. Aidan O'Brien has a trio of entries and though none have shown anything like the form of the selection it's likely Hibiscus, in particular, has more to offer.
Xebec (USA) 3-1 (9-13) Soon led, ridden to assert from under 2f out, reduced lead but stayed on well inside final furlong, won at Bellewstown 1m 4f hcp Yielding in Aug beating Hint Of Frost (8-7) by 3/4l, 8 ran.
Stellar Mass (IRE) 8-1 (9-3) Tracked leaders, 4th halfway, ridden 2f out and no impression in 5th over 1f out, kept on one pace inside final furlong, last of 5, 4l behind Zhukova (9-9) at Leopardstown 1m 4f Grp 3 stks (1) gd in Sep.
Alveena (IRE) 7-2 (9-7) Settled behind leaders, 5th halfway, progress into 3rd 4f out, ridden in 2nd over 2f out, under pressure in 5th entering straight, no extra 1f out, 10th of 14, 9 1/4l behind Golden Spear (8-4) at Galway 1m 4f hcp Yielding in Jul.
Soul Searcher (IRE) 66-1 (9-4) In rear, pushed along over 2f out, moderate 7th 1f out, kept on without threatening final furlong, 5th of 10, 5 3/4l behind Twilight Payment (8-11) at Curragh 2m lst stks (1) hvy in Sep.
Bravery (IRE) 2-1fav (9-0) Chased leader, 4th halfway, ridden 2f out and no impression in 5th over 1f out, kept on one pace, 5th of 7, 6 1/2l behind Ringside Humour (9-8) at Dundalk 1m 3f pol in Sep.
Hibiscus (IRE) 5-1 (9-0) Raced in 9th early, closer in 5th straight, challenged in 3rd over 1f out, led inside final furlong, stayed on well, won at Curragh 1m 2f mdn fll Yielding - Soft in Sep beating Green Or Black (9-6) by 1 1/2l, 16 ran.
How High The Moon (IRE) 25-1 (9-0) Settled 5th on inner, 6th 4f out, driven entering straight, ridden 2f out, no impression, kept on one pace final furlong, 6th of 12, 8 3/4l behind Duchess Andorra (9-5) at Gowran Park 1m 1f Grp 3 fll stks (1) sft in Sep.