Dual bumper winner Secret Escape wasn’t disgraced in decent contests at Aintree and Cheltenham in the autumn. She’s a half-sister to useful hurdler Portrade so there is no reason why she shouldn’t transfer her ability to jumping. Passing Call has become expensive to follow but has only found one too good in her two runs to date over timber. Nicky Henderson’s yard can do little wrong at present and MELANGERIE has improved with experience. She was a decisive winner here last month and James Bowen’s claim takes care of most of her penalty. Rouergate has a few lengths to find with Passing Call on Uttoxeter running but she may have more scope.
Melangerie 11-2 (10-5) Chased leaders, hampered 1st, 2nd 2 out, soon led, clear towards finish, stayed on, won at Ludlow 2m (4) sft in Dec beating Casterly Rock (10-12) by 3l, 14 ran.
Celer Et Audax 250-1 (10-7) Unseated rider 1st, at Chepstow 2m 3f mdn (4) hvy in Jan.
Definite Winner (IRE) 66-1 (10-10) Always behind, slightly hampered 4th, tailed off and pulled up before 6th, at Exeter 2m 3f (4) sft in Dec.
Fleur Du Pommier 100-1 (10-12) Chased leaders, led over 2f out, headed over 1f out, weakened final furlong, 5th of 13, 7 1/2l behind Everlanes (10-12) at Southwell 2m (6) gd in Nov.
Gloi 150-1 (10-12) In rear, mistake 1st, not fluent 2nd, ridden 4th, tailed off from next, 11th of 12, dist behind Comrade Conrad (10-7) at Ludlow 2m mdn (4) sft in Jan.
Hijran (IRE) 66-1 (10-12) Held up in touch, tracked leaders 3 out, ridden and outpaced after next, well held when blundered and lost modest 4th last, 6th of 7, 19 1/2l behind Raised On Grazeon (10-12) at Catterick 2m (4) sft in Jan.
Lady Vitesse 50-1 (10-7) Took keen hold, mid-division on outside, headway 7f out, weakened 5f out, last of 14, dist behind The Big Bite (11-7) at Huntingdon 2m (6) gs in Dec.
May Mist 100-1 (10-7) Led early, prominent, led 4th, carried out by loose horse before 3 out, at Ludlow 2m mdn (4) gs in Nov.
Passing Call 8-15fav (10-12) Tracked leader, ridden to challenge after 2 out, not fluent last, ran on towards finish, never reached winner, 2nd of 7, 1/2l behind Banjo Girl (10-12) at Southwell 2m (4) gd in Nov.
Quine des Champs 14-1 (10-12) Prominent, ridden to challenge over 2f out, stayed on same pace final furlong, 3rd of 13, 5 3/4l behind Everlanes (10-12) at Southwell 2m (6) gd in Nov.
Rouergate (FR) 25-1 (11-5) Held up in mid-division, landed steeply 1st, headway approaching 3 out, 3rd from next, kept on, 3rd of 12, 6 1/4l behind Dame De Compagnie (11-5) at Uttoxeter 2m mdn (4) gd in Nov.
Shufoog 125-1 (10-7) Held up towards rear, never a factor, 13th of 21, dist behind Pacific De Baune (11-0) at Newbury 2m mdn (4) sft in Dec.
The Mistress (IRE) 28-1 (10-12) Held up towards rear, jumped left at times, headway after 4 out, weakened before 2 out, 6th of 13, 21l behind Zalvados (11-5) at Ludlow 2m mdn (4) sft in Jan.
Trojan Lass (IRE) 50-1 (10-13) Mid-division early, slight mistake 3rd, 11th approaching 7th, no extra and dropped behind before 4 out, completely tailed off, 17th of 18, dist behind Dawn Shadow (11-7) at Clonmel 2m 4f mdn sft in Nov.
Sin Sin (IRE) 3-1 (10-5) Held up in touch, outpaced in 4th before 2 out, kept on, no chance with leaders, 4th of 7, 23l behind Vaziani (10-12) at Taunton 2m (4) sft in Dec.
Secret Escape (IRE) 10-1 (11-0) Mid-division, driven to chase leaders over 2f out, ridden and one pace over 1f out, went 4th and kept on inside final furlong, no impression, 4th of 9, 5 3/4l behind Posh Trish (11-0) at Cheltenham 2m lst (1) sft in Nov.