The Betchworth Kid was fit from a campaign over hurdles when accounting for Free Agent, Askar Tau and AKMAL in a conditions race over 1m6f at Nottingham three weeks ago. Alan King's six-year-old may struggle to confirm that form in this better race over a longer trip with those behind all likely to have gleaned considerable benefit from the outing. John Dunlop's stayer looked more in need of the run than most that day and also missed the break. He still led to the furlong pole, however, and this track should play more to his strengths. Theology was just beaten in the Queen's Vase over C&D last year and gets a handy weight allowance on his reappearance but Cesarewitch winner Aaim To Prosper looks to have a bit to find, as does Buxted. Rajik was fourth in last season's Irish St Leger and should go well, however.
Aaim To Prosper (IRE) 16-1 (7-13) In touch on inside, headway to lead 4f out, ridden 2f out, clear over 1f out until inside final furlong, soon hard pressed, held on under pressure near finish, won at Newmarket 2m 2f hcp (2) gs in Oct beating La Vecchia Scuola (8-9) by nk, 32 ran.
Akmal 5-2 (9-0) Tracked leaders, went 2nd over 12f out, pushed along over 3f out, ridden 2f out, headed over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 5th of 6, 8l behind The Betchworth Kid (9-0) at Nottingham 1m 6f Listed stks (1) fm.
Askar Tau (FR) 5-1 (9-0) Held up, went 3rd 8f out, challenged over 4f out, challenged 2f out, ridden to lead over 1f out, headed towards finish, 3rd of 6, 1 1/2l behind The Betchworth Kid (9-0) at Nottingham 1m 6f Listed stks (1) fm.
Buxted (IRE) 14-1 (9-0) In rear, headway to chase leaders 4f out, ridden and outpaced 3f out, driven and rallied entering final furlong, stayed on to go 3rd near finish, 3rd of 8, 8l behind Tastahil (9-0) at Newmarket 2m Grp 3 (1) gs in Oct.
Free Agent 6-4fav (9-0) Held up, headway over 4f out, challenged 2f out, led towards finish, headed post, 2nd of 6, shd behind The Betchworth Kid (9-0) at Nottingham 1m 6f Listed stks (1) fm.
Rajik (IRE) 16-1 (9-11) Prominent, 3rd from halfway, 4th and driven along approaching straight, 5th under 1 1/2f out, kept on, 4th of 8, 4l behind Sans Frontieres (9-11) at Curragh 1m 6f Grp 1 (1) in Sep.
The Betchworth Kid 8-1 (9-0) Held up in rear, pushed along when in touch over 4f out, outpaced 3f out, rallied final furlong, edged left towards finish, led post, won at Nottingham 1m 6f Listed stks (1) fm beating Free Agent (9-0) by shd, 6 ran.
Theology 40-1 (9-0) Held up in rear, some headway 2f out, kept on inside final furlong, never a threat, 7th of 10, 8l behind Arctic Cosmos (9-0) at Doncaster 1m 6f 3yo Grp 1 (1) gd in Sep.