Richard Johnson has three booked rides for Tim Vaughan starting with CHAMPAGNE CHASER, who he rode to victory over slightly further at Cartmel in July. His mount was still in the lead when unseating his rider at the last at Chepstow last month and won't mind testing ground. Celtic Flames has won over fences on heavy going here though hasn't been seen since gaining a surprise victory over hurdles at Perth in September last year. His stable companion Haul Us In has an even longer absence to overcome but will love the conditions having completed a hat-trick in heavy going in the spring of last year. Sweet Vinetta scored here in October but didn't appreciate front-running at Ayr last month, a race in which Baby Ticker ran very well after a long absence.
Champagne Chaser 11-1 (11-10) Mid-division on outside, tracked leaders 4th, led approaching 2 out, soon ridden, hard pressed when hit and unseated rider soon after last, at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp (4) sft in Nov.
Celtic Flames (IRE) 18-1 (11-13) In rear, pushed along before 6th, headway approaching 2 out, challenged flat, stayed on, led towards finish, won at Perth 2m 4f hcp (4) gd in Sep beating Jaunty Thor (11-10) by nk, 15 ran.
Sweet Vinetta 7-2 (11-4) Led until after 3rd, remained prominent, led after 4 out, headed next, weakened quickly, 7th of 9, 21 3/4l behind Jessiemac (10-3) at Ayr 2m 4f hcp (4) hvy in Nov.
Haul Us In (IRE) 16-1 (10-6) In touch main group, pushed along after 5 out, ridden and weakened before 2 out, 10th of 16, 20l behind Naranja (10-12) at Ayr 3m hcp (2) gd in Apr.
Baby Ticker 12-1 (11-1) Mid-division, headway 6 out, chased leaders next, effort in 4th 3 out, no extra approaching last, 4th of 9, 12l behind Jessiemac (10-3) at Ayr 2m 4f hcp (4) hvy in Nov.
Un Guet Apens (FR) 4-1 (11-1) Chased leaders, not fluent 7th or 8th, driven when mistake 10th, soon weakened, tailed off when left in remote 3rd 4 out, left in remote 2nd before last, no chance with winner, 2nd of 4, dist behind Pain Au Chocolat (11-12) at Newcastle 2m 4f hcp (3) hvy in Apr.
Muroor 40-1 (11-13) Towards rear, ridden 5 out, never on terms, 5th of 9, 29 1/4l behind Mah Mate Bob (11-12) at Hexham 2m hcp (4) hvy in Nov.
Near Kettering 33-1 (10-13) Held up towards rear, jumped left 2nd, well beaten before 3 out, 8th of 9, dist behind Informateur (11-11) at Uttoxeter 2m 4f hcp (4) sft in Nov.
Mahler Supreme (IRE) 11-2 (11-11) Held up in touch, lost place before 3rd, rallied before 6 out, chased leaders next, effort 3 out, weakened next, 3rd of 9, 22l behind Calivigny (11-12) at Ayr 2m 3f hcp (4) hvy in Nov.