Most of the usual suspects are involved including last year's winner Auvergnat, one of five owned by JP McManus. He's greatly respected under last year's winning rider while Nina Carberry rides the veteran Cantlow, who is no doubt warming up for another crack at Cheltenham, where he always goes well. Mark Walsh generally has the pick of the McManus runners when Barry Geraghty isn't around and takes the ride on JOSIES ORDERS, who has become a Cheltenham specialist, having won three times there and also over this track. He could be good enough as though Hurricane Darwin would have a chance second to none over conventional fences he makes his debut in this sphere. The once useful Venitien De Mai ran so poorly at Thurles that something must have been amiss and is better judged on his close second to Gilgamboa at Down Royal.
Auvergnat (FR) 2-1fav (11-2) Tracked leaders, fell 11th, at Cheltenham 3m 6f hcp (2) gd in Nov.
Hurricane Darwin (IRE) 12-1 (10-8) Rear of mid-division on outer, progress after 4 out, ridden and no impression from 3 out, 13th of 21, dist behind Mala Beach (11-9) at Navan 3m hcp Soft - Heavy in Nov.
Mtada Supreme (IRE) 25-1 (10-3) Towards rear, behind 18th, tailed off 20th, pulled up after, at Cheltenham 3m 6f hcp (2) gs in Dec.
Venitien De Mai (FR) 5-2 (12-0) Tracked leaders, disputed briefly 3rd, mistake 6th, pushed along and no impression in 4th approaching straight, no extra, weakened, 4th of 7, dist behind Gilgamboa (11-11) at Thurles 3m hvy in Jan.
Enniskillen (IRE) 16-1 (11-11) Mid-division early, chased leaders from 6th, 3rd halfway, ridden and no extra 4 out, weakened and completely tailed off, 6th of 10, dist behind Gilgamboa (11-7) at Down Royal 2m 6f hvy in Dec.
Fergiethelegend (IRE) 14-1 (11-4) Led, pushed along and pressed 3 out, soon headed and no impression before next, under pressure and no extra approaching last where slightly hampered, kept on one pace, 5th of 9, 18 1/4l behind Benarty Hill (11-4) at Down Royal 2m 4f hcp hvy in Jan.
Josies Orders (IRE) 16-1 (10-11) Held up, 8th from 6th, pushed along 4 out, no extra from before straight, 10th of 12, dist behind Lite Duties (11-3) at Cork 2m 4f hcp hvy in Jan.
Baily Fox (IRE) 12-1 (11-11) Chsd ldr, 3rd 1/2way, prog to jn ldr 4out, wo sn aftr, jnd 3out, cl 2nd when mstk last, no ch with easy wnr, 2nd of 8, 6l behind Billaway (12-2) at Ballinaboola 3m mdn Yielding - Soft in Feb.
Blue Templar (IRE) 5-2 (11-11) Mid-div best, 6th frm 14th, mod 6th 2out, poor 6th frm 2out, 6th of 8, 36 1/4l behind Venitien De Mai (12-2) at Lingstown 3m sft in Nov.
My Hometown (IRE) 50-1 (10-0) Led 2nd, veered slightly left on landing 10th, hung right and headed 27th, weakened after 2 out, 6th of 9, dist behind Bless The Wings (11-2) at Cheltenham 3m 6f hcp (2) gs in Dec.
Sammy Black (GER) 8-1 (12-2) Trkd ldr in 2nd, mstks 7th & 5out, 2nd & pushed aftr 2out, wknd aftr 2out, drpd 4th bef last, 4th of 6, 21 1/2l behind Sydney Paget (12-2) at Aghabullogue 3m hvy in Jan.
Cantlow (IRE) 7-1 (11-1) Mid-division, headway 13th, 2nd after 2 out, held by winner flat, stayed on, 2nd of 9, 2 1/2l behind Bless The Wings (11-2) at Cheltenham 3m 6f hcp (2) gs in Dec.