A tricky opener but ALNADAM makes plenty of appeal with the prospect of further rain. After winning at Uttoxeter, he got outpaced under a penalty at Leicester so the extra half-mile should be right up his street – he remains unexposed. Mon Palois came right back to form when just failing to reel in Eddiemaurice over 2m here last time. He’s done most of his racing over longer trips so should be staying on again. Jaisalmer ended a two-year wait for another victory at Warwick last month while it’s no surprise to see Pemberley dropped in trip after failing to stay longer distances since scoring at Hereford. Eau Top should have more to offer while Epsalion is gradually easing towards a fair mark. Le Grand Fromage and the consistent Iconic Muddle are also worth a second glance.
Le Grand Fromage 5-1 (11-2) Raced on inside, keen in mid-division, headway chasing leaders before 3 out, well held before last, lost modest 3rd close home, 4th of 13, 7 3/4l behind Global Society (11-2) at Doncaster 2m 1f (4) sft in Jan.
Alnadam (FR) 6-1 (11-4) Tracked leaders, ridden 2 out, kept on same pace, 4th of 11, 8 3/4l behind Rootless Tree (10-12) at Leicester 2m (3) hvy in Dec.
Mon Palois (FR) 5-1 (11-5) Held up towards rear, 8th and plenty to do at 6th, headway on long run between last 2, stayed on into 2nd run-in, strong challenge close home, just held, 2nd of 10, hd behind Eddiemaurice (11-12) at Newbury 2m hcp (4) hvy in Jan.
Jaisalmer (IRE) 10-3 (12-1) Prominent, ridden before 2 out, 3rd and looked held 50 yards out, finished well to lead close home, won at Warwick 2m hcp (4) sft in Jan beating Bardd (11-5) by nk, 10 ran.
Cristal Spirit 20-1 (10-2) Chased leaders, mistake and lost place from 4 out, 7th of 10, dist behind Cervaro Mix (10-9) at Huntingdon 2m 4f hcp (2) gs in Feb.
The Kings Baby (IRE) 14-1 (11-0) Led to 2nd, pressed leader, driven and lost place turning in, soon weakened, 7th of 8, 33 1/4l behind Getaway Totherock (11-8) at Ludlow 2m 5f hcp (3) sft in Feb.
Iconic Muddle 5-1 (11-3) Chased winner, hit 1st, lost 2nd before the last, no extra in 3rd, 3rd of 9, 10 1/4l behind Stick With Bill (11-12) at Sandown 2m 4f hcp (3) hvy in Feb.
Flight Deck (IRE) 40-1 (11-4) Led, blundered 3rd, soon headed, lost place next, weakened 4 out, 10th of 16, 33l behind Chambard (11-4) at Exeter 2m 1f mdn (4) gs in Jan.
So Lonely (IRE) 14-1 (11-10) Always in rear, mistake 6th, soon struggling, tailed off when slightly hampered 2 out, 7th of 8, dist behind Daphne Du Clos (11-12) at Uttoxeter 2m hcp (4) hvy in Feb.
Espalion (FR) 9-1 (10-10) Mid-division, headway before 2 out, weakened after last, 6th of 11, 12 1/4l behind Espoir De Romay (12-0) at Wincanton 2m 4f hcp (3) sft in Jan.
Pemberley (IRE) 7-1 (11-9) Held up, headway 8th, chased leaders 2 out, stayed on same pace after last, 4th of 11, 2l behind Supakalanistic (12-0) at Market Rasen 2m 7f hcp (4) gs in Feb.
Eau Top (FR) 4-1 (11-4) Held up towards rear, headway 4 out, every chance 3 out, weakened flat, 4th of 12, 16l behind Allart (11-4) at Ludlow 2m (4) sft in Jan.
Certainly Red 25-1 (11-7) Chased leaders in 5th, challenged 3 out, led soon after until headed 2 out, chased winner, flattered by proximity to eased down winner, 2nd of 16, 1 1/2l behind Imperial Elysian (11-8) at Kempton 2m 5f hcp (4) gs in Feb.
Alcock And Brown (IRE) 66-1 (10-10) Prominent until weakened before 5th, tailed off when pulled up before 3 out, at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp (4) hvy in Jan.