A bumper winner at this track, SPECIAL CATCH opened his hurdling account over C&D a fortnight ago. He'll be a short price to follow-up in today's company despite a penalty. Stablemate Broctune Papa Gio made an inauspicious debut over timber when well beaten at Musselburgh and Franky Spec was already beaten when falling at Newcastle on his hurdling bow. Uno Valoroso, Vinetta and Ewe Are Joking all finished a distance behind the selection last time and Leyland, a winner on the Flat in Ireland, could prove a bigger threat on his second start for new connections.
Special Catch (IRE) 13-8fav (10-12) In touch, not fluent 3rd, headway after 4 out, every chance 2 out, led before last, soon clear, unextended, impressive, won at Catterick 2m 3f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Dec beating Walkabout Creek (10-12) by 9l, 15 ran.
Broctune Papa Gio 40-1 (11-0) In rear, struggling 8th, never dangerous, 8th of 11, well behind Lord Wishes (11-0) at Musselburgh 2m 4f mdn hdl (5) gs in Dec.
Croco Bay (IRE) 80-1 (11-0) Led, hit 2nd, headed before 3 out, weakened before 2 out, 5th of 15, 30l behind Woodpole Academy (11-0) at Newcastle 2m NH Maiden Hurdle (4-6yo) (5) hvy in Dec.
Ewe Are Joking 100-1 (10-7) Always behind, tailed off, 12th of 15, well behind Special Catch (10-12) at Catterick 2m 3f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Dec.
Franky Spec (IRE) 25-1 (10-9) Mid-division, outpaced after 4 out, behind when fell next, in a race won by Duke Of Navan (10-12) at Newcastle 2m nh nov hdl (4) gs in Oct, 10 ran.
Grey Command (USA) 9-1 (9-1) Always in rear, 8th of 9, 10l behind Nay Secret (7-11) at Thirsk 2m hcp 0-70 (5) gs in Jun (flat).
Have One For Me (IRE) 8-1 (12-0) To 7, 6th of 11, well behind Just Dave (12-0) at Cambridge University United Hunt 3m ptp gd in Nov.
Uno Valoroso (FR) 150-1 (10-12) Behind, headway after 3 out, soon beaten, 10th of 15, 33l behind Special Catch (10-12) at Catterick 2m 3f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Dec.
Vinetta 100-1 (9-12) Mid-division, never on terms, 7th of 15, 25l behind Special Catch (10-12) at Catterick 2m 3f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Dec.
Leyland (IRE) 40-1 (10-12) Held up in rear, struggling 4 out, headway before 2 out, never on terms, 6th of 14, 35l behind Ruacana (10-12) at Catterick 2m 3yo hdl (4) gs in Dec.