Despite getting off the mark at Hexham earlier this month, the handicapper has left Ballyben on the same mark and he must have a good chance of a quick follow-up. Purcell's Bridge was a good second to Lie Forrit on his reappearance at Wetherby while Knockraheen and Rattlin can figure if fully wound-up. BIG CASINO is lightly-raced and was beaten less than a length by the useful Shutthefrontdoor on soft going at Wincanton in January. A repeat of that effort here may well suffice. Houston Dynimo is often thereabouts but could find conditions too testing on his return.
Purcell's Bridge (FR) 7-2 (10-0) In touch in 4th and keen, headway 4 out, chased winner before 3 out, kept on and no impression, 2nd of 7, 3 1/2l behind Lie Forrit (11-10) at Wetherby 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-140 (3) gs.
Knockraheen (IRE) 12-1 (11-9) Held up in mid-division, smooth headway 7th, chased leaders 3 out, led and blundered 2 out, ridden and headed before last where not fluent, stayed on same pace flat, 2nd of 12, 1 3/4l behind Taigan (11-5) at Southwell 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gs in May.
Makhzoon (USA) 11-2 (10-10) Chased leaders, lost place before 2nd, ridden after 5th, well beaten before 2 out, 7th of 8, 38l behind Formal Bid (11-4) at Perth 2m clm hdl (4) gs in Sep.
Houston Dynimo (IRE) 9-1 (11-7) Held up in rear, some headway 4 out, outpaced next, stayed on approaching last, left 3rd at hurdle, no impression, 3rd of 8, 6l behind Granaruid (10-13) at Hexham 2m 4f amat hcp hdl (4) gd in Jun.
Talkin Sence (IRE) 15-2 (10-9) Towards rear, never a factor, 7th of 9, 33l behind Sixty Something (11-12) at Market Rasen 3m hcp hdl 0-130 (3) sft in Mar.
Ballyben (IRE) 5-2fav (10-7) Made all, ridden approaching last, stayed on well, won at Hexham 2m 4f mdn hdl (5) gd beating Milano Magic (11-0) by 1 3/4l, 11 ran.
Border Phoenix 11-2 (11-0) Tracked leading trio, went 3rd at 7th, left 2nd 2 out, ridden to lead last, driven out, won at Perth 2m 4f mdn hdl (5) gf in Jun beating Mandarin Sunset (11-0) by 1/2l, 7 ran.
Kent Street (IRE) 20-1 (10-13) Mid-division, fell 8th, in a race won by Arctic Court (10-13) at Kelso 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gd in Apr, 13 ran.
Big Casino 11-4 (11-0) Tracked leaders, went remote 3rd after 3 out, no impression, 3rd of 12, 30l behind Fergall (10-11) at Newton Abbot 2m 3f NH mdn hdl (4) gf in May.
Rattlin 7-2 (11-7) Tracked leaders in 4th, went 2nd from 7th, led before 2 out, clear before last, kept on well, won at Hexham 2m 4f mrs hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gd in Jun beating Bollin Dolly (11-9) by 2 3/4l, 7 ran.