mid-division, headway 3f out, kept on under pressure inside final furlong
in touch, smooth headway on inside over 2f out, led going well inside final 2f, ran on well
prominent, chased leader over 2f out, until over 1f out, stayed on same pace
held up, in rear, headway on outside 3f out, ran wide straight, ran on inside final furlong, not reached leaders
held up, towards rear, headway over 2f out, chased winner over 1f out, soon every chance, stayed on same pace
prominent, caught wide on 1st turn, chased leader over 6f out, weakened over 3f out
behind and struggling 5f out, tailed off
held up in mid-division, headway on outside 2f out, kept on inside final furlong
held up in mid-division on outside, headway 4f out, weakened over 2f out
crossed over to lead after 1f, headed well over 1f out, weakened over 1f out
led if, chased leader until over 6f out, weakened over 3f out
LYRICAL INTENT is hard to oppose in his current mood and can go in again from Colonel Sherman and By Command. Our selection has climbed from a rating of 46 to today's perch of 60 having won three on the bounce, but he looks worth the extra weight and in a poor race rates the solid proposition. Today's rider has shown himself to be capable enough and with conditions ideal his mount gets the vote from Colonel Sherman. The last-named has the assistance of Simon Walker in the plate and his skills are the best on offer, something which can count for plenty in this type of event. The concern is his winning form is at longer trips and for that reason he's narrowly opposed. By Command was rated 99 when trained by John Dunlop but in the 18 months to have passed he's declined to a mark of 59. Joshua Moore is capable and his 3lb claim helps, so connections will be hopeful they've found the right race for their disappointing animal. He rates an each way player alongside Kielty's Folly who like all of these is modest but unlike most is reliable in this type of contest. He's only 3lb higher than when scoring over course and distance so must enter calculations at some level. Royal Society beat Kielty's Folly by a head off identical terms when winning here in November so his chance is clear; he's been behind an in-form sort the last twice and might find our selection too strong but a big run is still anticipated. He's preferred to Northgate Lodge of the rest, although Mel Brittain's charge did take a step forward last time and if doing so again he'd have claims with his mark unaltered. Loyal Knight and High Class Problem return from breaks and are worth monitoring for support, but we anticipate another winning performance from Lyrical Intent.
Lyrical Intent 5-4fav (9-2) Tracked leaders, headway 2f out, ridden to lead over 1f out, stayed on under pressure final furlong, won at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp 0-50 (7) pol in Jan beating Libre (8-9) by 1 1/4l, 12 ran.
By Command 11-2 (8-3) Always mid-division, 6th of 10, 7l behind Elusive Warrior (9-2) at Southwell 7f hacp 0-70 (5) fbs in Jan.
Royal Society 15-2 (8-13) Tracked winner, ridden over 2f out, lost 2nd inside final furlong, 3rd of 12, 3 1/2l behind Grey Command (9-0) at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp (0-55) (6) pol in Jan.
Barodine 9-2 (8-12) Mid-division, headway over 2f out, led inside final furlong, kept on, won at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp 0-50 (7) pol beating Midnight Bay (8-12) by 3l, 12 ran.
Kielty's Folly 10-1 (8-10) Held up, mid-division, ridden and headway over 1f out, no extra inside final furlong, 4th of 13, 2 1/2l behind Harting Hill (9-3) at Kempton 7f Handicap (0-58) (4yo+) (6) pol.
Loyal Knight (IRE) 9-1 (9-5) In touch, ridden 3f out, weakened over 1f out, 10th of 15, 13l behind Poppets Sweetlove (9-7) at Yarmouth 7f hcap (6) gd in Sep '08.
High Class Problem (IRE) 25-1 (8-9) Always rear group, well behind final 2f, 12th of 13, 22l behind Tous Les Deux (9-6) at Kempton 1m hcp (6) pol in Nov '08.
Cruise Control 100-1 (9-9) Slowly into stride, in rear, ridden over 2f out, no impression, 5th of 7, 7l behind Into Wain (8-7) at Wolverhampton 1m 1f mdn auc stks (5) pol.
Machinate (USA) 50-1 (8-9) Mid-division, ridden over 1f out, kept on same pace, no impression, 7th of 12, 4l behind Lyrical Intent (9-2) at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp 0-50 (7) pol in Jan.
Northgate Lodge (USA) 12-1 (8-5) Led, ridden and joined from 2f out, headed well inside final furlong, kept on, 3rd of 10, 1 3/4l behind The City Kid (8-10) at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp (0-55) (6) pol in Jan.
Foxtrot Bravo (IRE) 20-1 (9-3) Led, ridden and hung left over 2f out, headed just inside final 2f, weakened soon after, 10th of 13, 8l behind Prince Valentine (8-6) at Kempton 1m hcp 0-50 (7) pol in Jan.
Pont Wood 16-1 (9-0) Started slowly, always in rear, tailed off, 13th of 14, 39l behind Future Deal (9-0) at Kempton 1m stks (7) pol in Jan '08.
Colonel Sherman (USA) 11-4fav (9-0) Led and soon clear, headed towards finish, 2nd of 12, 1l behind Shandelight (8-6) at Wolverhampton 1m 4f hcp (0-55) (6) pol.