An intermediate hurdle kicks off our seven race card and it looks to be in the hands of trainer Alan King as he saddles SANTIA but Gloucester has to be respected with Vicario also entering calculations. If this was a handicap the selection would be conceding at least four pounds to the rest of the field but as it is she will actually receive seven from her main rival. She was perhaps a little outclassed in a valuable mares hurdle at Punchestown last time out but her runs before that including a decent effort in Listed company have been good and at this level she looks the one to beat. Gloucester followed up a win in a novice hurdle by scoring in a moderate handicap on the level last time out but while the gelding is on good form he looks to have a little to find on the pick, especially on these terms. Vicario scored on his only previous attempt over the course and distance last time out in novice company and still looks to be improving. Another big run is expected but he will need to show all of his expected progression to challenge. Morestead is the only other to really consider coming from a yard in form but he is yet to convince at this level so this looks like a perfect opportunity for Santia to score.
Santia 25-1 (11-2) Mid-division best, niggled along 5 out, no extra from 2 out, 12th of 14, 38l behind Voler La Vedette (10-12) at Punchestown 2m 2f hdl G3 sft in May.
Morestead (IRE) 20-1 (10-13) Chased winner until ridden and weakened quickly before 8th, 9th of 11, 49l behind Tritonville Lodge (11-12) at Fontwell 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gf in May.
Apache Dawn 18-1 (10-5) Held up, outpaced 4 out, never troubled leaders, 4th of 5, 44l behind Marsam (10-12) at Wetherby 2m nov stks (4) gs in May.
Don Castille (USA) 100-1 (11-5) Chased leaders, weakened after 4 out, tailed off when pulled up before last Pulled Up, in a race won by Wichita Lineman (11-12) at Cheltenham 2m 4f nov hdl Grd 2 (1) hvy in Jan '07, 11 ran.
Jeanry (FR) 66-1 (10-7) In rear, raced keenly, not fluent 2nd, lost touch before 7th, tailed off and pulled up before 2 out, in a race won by Bulwark (10-9) at Towcester 2m 3f mdn hdl (4) gd in May, 14 ran.
Pelennor (FR) 66-1 (10-12) Led and soon well clear, hit 4th, not fluent 3 f out, soon headed and weakened, 6th of 10, well behind Bensalem (11-4) at Leicester 2m 4f nh nov hdl (3) gs in Dec.
Perryston Prince 150-1 (10-5) Pulled hard, prominent, jumped slowly 2nd, dropped rear when hung right on bend after 4th, continued jumping right, tailed off, pulled up before 7th, in a race won by Gloucester (11-5) at Uttoxeter 2m nh nov hdl (4) gf in Apr, 7 ran.
Tork To Me (IRE) 7-1 (10-7) To 9, 8th of 11, well behind Persian Warrior (12-0) at Cold Harbour 2m 4f ptp in May.
Midsummer Bay Forzando mare out of Sea-belle.
Gloucester 2-5fav (11-5) Tracked leaders, led on bit 3 out, clear approaching 2 out, easily, won at Uttoxeter 2m nh nov hdl (4) gf in Apr beating Massams Lane (10-7) by 21l, 7 ran.
Vacario (GER) 85-40 (10-12) Chased leader to 2nd, remained prominent, 2nd again 5th, carried left after 3 out, switched right after 2 out, led flat, ridden clear towards finish, won at Worcester 2m nov hdl (4) gd in May beating Kilrogan (10-9) by 6l, 11 ran.
Alwaysablue 18-1 (10-9) Led for 3 out, weakened approaching next, 4th of 10, 36l behind Shut The Bar (10-10) at Bangor 2m 1f NH mdn hdl (4) gs in May.