BOURNE pops up when least expected and should be cherry-ripe now after a couple of runs this autumn. He's back over a more suitable trip today and, on a winning mark, should give a decent account here. Hada Men would certainly have claims on his best form. He may be a couple of pounds too high on his return and would probably prefer a bit further but can't be ruled out. Stopped Out ran well on the Flat last month and is preferred to Shotavodka and Azure Fly, who may have been collared by the handicapper, while Bob's World was well beaten on his reappearance and may need his sights lowering.
Native Gallery (IRE) 7-1 (11-5) Prominent, challenged 7th, led 3 out, headed 2 out, 5th and beaten last, weakened flat, 8th of 17, 26l behind Party Rock (10-4) at Aintree 2m 4f hcp hdl (2) gd in May.
Stopped Out 22-1 (10-13) Made all, clear 2 out, 5 lengths ahead last, stayed on strongly, unchallenged, won at Sandown 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-145 (2) gd in Apr beating Minella Forfitness (11-11) by 4 1/2l, 18 ran.
Shotavodka (IRE) 9-1 (11-0) Led, headed before 3rd, pressed leader, hit 3 out, pushed along and lost 2nd before 2 out, weakend between last 2, 9th of 12, 21l behind Pine Creek (10-4) at Ascot 2m Listed hcp hdl (1) gs.
Azure Fly (IRE) 2-1 (11-6) Wore ear plugs, tracked leading pair until slow jump and dropped to rear 1st, headway and closed to dispute 2nd well before 2 out, 3rd and beaten when veered sharply left soon after jumping 2 out, 3rd of 5, 17l behind Sea Lord (11-8) at Kempton 2m Listed nov hdl (1) gs in Oct.
Hada Men (USA) 7-2 (11-9) Close up, reminders after 3 out, disputed lead before 2 out until headed run-in, kept on, 2nd of 8, 1 1/4l behind Andreo Bambaleo (10-0) at Market Rasen 3m hcp hdl 0-135 (3) gd in May.
Bourne 15-2 (11-12) Held up behind, niggled after 8th, headway before 3 out, weakened soon after, 4th of 6, 21l behind Abnaki (11-1) at Sedgefield 3m 3f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) gs in Oct.
Bob's World 14-1 (10-8) Mid-division, mistake and lost place 2nd, mistake 5th, ridden after next, soon behind, tailed off, last of 10, well behind Karinga Dancer (11-4) at Aintree 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-150 (2) gs in Oct.
Phoenix Returns (IRE) 16-1 (11-12) Tracked leader, ridden before 2 out, soon weakened, 6th of 7, 23l behind Upswing (11-4) at Carlisle 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) gs in Oct.