Sea Lord has the highest official rating and his form figures are impressive but he was no match for The Liquidator at Cheltenham when last seen and the winner has done little for the form since. Lac Fontana won the County Hurdle at Cheltenham and stays this longer trip. He must have every chance of following up here but Dell'Arca and Splash Of Ginge are also tough handicappers, though Volnay De Thaix finished ahead of the latter at Ascot in December and re-opposes on better terms. Wilde Blue Yonder tries a new trip but ran very well behind Vautour in the Supreme Novices', though we prefer KAYF MOSS. He is still improving and his defeat of Meister Eckhart in the National Spirit at Fontwell was franked when the runner-up went close under a big weight here on Thursday.
Dell' Arca (IRE) 8-1fav (10-13) Tracked leaders, headway 2 out, ridden and every chance on outside between last 2, kept on same pace under presure in 5th flat, 5th of 28, 4l behind Whisper (11-6) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp hdl Grade 3 (1) gd in Mar.
Kayf Moss 16-1 (11-3) Led, set strong pace and soon clear, reduced lead 5th, pushed along before 7th, driven and stayed on from last, strongly pressed near finish, held on gamely, all out, won at Fontwell 2m 4f hdl G2 (1) hvy in Feb beating Meister Eckhart (11-3) by hd, 6 ran.
Kilcooley (IRE) 1-2fav (11-8) Tracked leader, left in lead before 4th, pressed from 2 out, ridden run-in, kept on gamely, won at Market Rasen 2m 1f nov hdl (4) gs in Mar beating Such A Legend (11-1) by 2l, 8 ran.
Lac Fontana (FR) 11-1 (10-11) In touch, driven 2 out, headway between last 2, in touch last, soon ridden, stayed on well to lead towards finish, won at Cheltenham 2m 1f hcp hdl G3 (1) gd in Mar beating Arctic Fire (10-13) by 1/2l, 28 ran.
Monkey Kingdom 4-1 (11-2) Prominent, led 2nd, clear after 3 out, stayed on strongly, won at Bangor 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gs in Mar beating Big Hands Harry (11-7) by 3 1/2l, 8 ran.
No No Romeo (IRE) 5-2 (11-4) Tracked leaders, led over 3f out, headed over 1f out, kept on same pace, 2nd of 8, 6l behind Ordo Ab Chao (11-4) at Huntingdon 2m NH flat (6) sft in Mar.
Oscar Hoof (IRE) 5-4fav (11-7) Chased leaders, led 3 out, ridden clear approaching last, ran on well, won at Kempton 2m nh nov hdl (4) gs in Mar beating Fair Loch (11-1) by 3 1/2l, 17 ran.
Sea Lord (IRE) Evensfav (11-7) Tracked leader until before 3rd, pushed along and struggling 4th, last after next, went modest 3rd when mistake 2 out, stayed on from after last, went 2nd close home, no chance with winner, 2nd of 4, 15l behind The Liquidator (11-4) at Cheltenham 2m nov hdl G2 (1) gd in Nov.
Splash of Ginge 20-1 (11-7) Led to 2nd, tracked leaders, driven before 3 out, lost place next, weakened before last, 15th of 18, 20l behind Vautour (11-7) at Cheltenham 2m nov hdl Grade 1 (1) gs in Mar.
Un Ace (FR) 40-1 (11-7) Behind, driven and headway after 2 out, kept on under pressure flat, never nearer, 8th of 18, 11l behind Vautour (11-7) at Cheltenham 2m nov hdl Grade 1 (1) gs in Mar.
Volnay De Thaix (FR) 5-4fav (11-12) Made all, ridden and stayed on well flat, won at Newbury 2m hcp hdl 0-145 (2) gd in Mar beating Kings Lad (10-13) by 3 1/2l, 6 ran.
Wilde Blue Yonder (IRE) 25-1 (11-7) Mid-division, headway before 3 out, chased leaders next, ridden before last, kept on under pressure flat, no impression, 5th of 18, 9l behind Vautour (11-7) at Cheltenham 2m nov hdl Grade 1 (1) gs in Mar.