BIG ZEB and Golden Silver have shared this for the past three seasons with the former scoring in 2008 and last year when he had his great rival almost 2l back in second and Scotsirish a further length away in third. The trio are involved again here and there doesn't appear any reason for a reversal of the placings, especially as the winner showed his wellbeing by conceding Noble Prince 5lb and beating him 2l in the Grade 2 Fortria Chase at Navan last month with Forpadydeplasterer a further head behind in receipt of 8lb from the winner. The runner-up, who landed the Jewson at Cheltenham in March, is probably suited by further and Colm Murphy's brilliant two-miler looks to hold all the aces in his bid to take this for the third time.
Big Zeb (IRE) 6-5 (11-12) Tracked leader in 2nd, improved to lead after 3 out, ridden 2 out, strongly pressed from last, asserted close home, won at Navan 2m chs G2 (1) in Nov beating Noble Prince (11-7) by 2l, 5 ran.
Forpadydeplasterer (IRE) 8-1 (11-4) Led, slight mistake 5th, ridden and headed after 3 out, kept on, close 3rd last, pressed leaders run-in, no extra close home, just held for 2nd, 3rd of 5, 2 1/4l behind Big Zeb (11-12) at Navan 2m chs G2 (1) in Nov.
Golden Silver (FR) 2-7fav (11-12) Slight mistake 3rd, chased leaders, went in pursuit of leader travelling well approaching 4 out where slightly slow, struggling to close from 3 out, about 5L down when left clear last, won at Cork 2m chs Grd 2 (1) beating Hughies Grey (11-4) by 28l, 5 ran.
Noble Prince (GER) Evensfav (11-7) Settled 4th, closed up 3 out, soon 3rd, ridden in 2nd 2 out, pressed winner from last, no extra close home, just held 2nd, 2nd of 5, 2l behind Big Zeb (11-12) at Navan 2m chs G2 (1) in Nov.
Scotsirish (IRE) 11-8fav (11-9) Towards rear, headway 29th, chased leaders 2 out, 6th and in touch when took wrong course before last, retraced steps to take 4th, 4th of 10, well behind Garde Champetre (11-12) at Cheltenham 3m 7f hcp chs (2) gf.
Saludos (IRE) 5-1 (11-7) Led, headed 5th, disputed lead briefly 4 out, ridden and led again entering straight, headed before 2 out, kept on onepaced before last, 3rd of 12, 11l behind Lastoftheleaders (10-9) at Fairyhouse 2m 1f hcp chs sft.