PICENO had dropped to a very lowly mark when tackling today's C&D a week ago and took advantage, coming home 6l clear of Llewellyn. Not surprisingly the handicapper has hit him hard and a 10lb rise will make things difficult but he's taken to go in again. Conry also won over the C&D at the same meeting though not with such ease and he's only ben raised 4lb so has to come into the reckoning. Lucky Numbers didn't enjoy the heavy ground at Haydock and is better judged on his victory at Thirsk in August. He's reasonably treated at his best and can get involved and though Fieldgunner Kirkup failed to complete a hat-trick at Ayr he's another who foundered in the mud last time and can do better. Kingscroft was out of his depth in a much better race at Ascot last time but had earlier won at Musselburgh and is only 3lb higher so has to be considered despite a big weight.
Kingscroft (IRE) 20-1 (9-1) Raced near side, chased leaders, ridden 2f out, weakened final 110 yards, 14th of 26, 7l behind Jack Dexter (8-13) at Ascot 7f Apprentice Handicap (0-100) (3yo+) (2) sft.
Klynch 20-1 (8-13) Slowly into stride, always behind, 10th of 12, 21l behind Kingscroft (8-9) at Musselburgh 7f hcp 0-95 (3) sft.
Fieldgunner Kirkup (GER) 5-1 (9-7) Disputed lead, led over 2f out, ridden and headed over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 7th of 10, 7l behind Bond Fastrac (9-5) at Ayr 6f hcp 0-85 (4) hvy.
Solar Spirit (IRE) 7-1 (9-4) Mid-division on inside, headway over 2f out, ridden and effort over 1f out, stayed on same pace final furlong, 8th of 15, 4 1/2l behind Baby Strange (8-13) at Pontefract 5f hcp 0-85 (4) hvy.
Atlantis Star 12-1 (9-7) Mid-division, pushed along halfway, ridden and kept on same pace inside final furlong, 7th of 12, 9l behind Fabled City (8-5) at Epsom Downs 7f hcp 0-85 (4) gd in Sep.
Lucky Numbers (IRE) 10-1 (8-7) Raced far side, reared start, in touch, effort over 2f out, hung right and weakened over 1f out, 11th of 14, 11l behind Take Cover (8-12) at Haydock 6f hcp 0-90 (3) hvy in Sep.
Viva Ronaldo (IRE) 33-1 (8-7) Slowly into stride, in rear, never a factor, 9th of 12, 11l behind Benzanno (8-4) at Haydock 1m hcp 0-95 (3) hvy.
Piceno (IRE) 15-2 (8-11) Made virtually all, driven over 2f out, soon ridden, stayed on well to go clear final furlong, won at Catterick 7f hcp 0-75 (5) sft beating Llewellyn (9-3) by 6l, 12 ran.
Conry (IRE) 12-1 (9-3) Held up towards rear, headway over 2f out, chased leading pair over 1f out, soon ridden, stayed on inside final furlong to lead towards finish, won at Catterick 7f hcp 0-75 (5) sft beating Flameoftheforest (9-7) by nk, 13 ran.
Boris Grigoriev (IRE) 10-1 (9-5) Mid-division, outpaced over 2f out, weakened over 1f out, 8th of 13, 19l behind Conry (9-3) at Catterick 7f hcp 0-75 (5) sft.