Eddie Lynam has won the last two of these and BALMONT MAST can complete a treble for the yard, especially with the best of the draw and Johnny Murtagh on board. His close second to The Reaper in a very tough handicap over the C&D in August was another fine run and that was only his second start since May. Three-year-olds have a good record so Experience is likely to come in for support. She's been competing at a very high level and won a Group 3 as a juvenile but her wide draw makes things difficult. Burj Alzain looks the biggest threat as he won his opening two runs at Kempton before transferring to the USA. He returned to Gerard Butler with a cracking effort at Kempton a fortnight ago and it will be a surprise if he's not in the mix. Bajan Tryst won a similar race to this over the C&D a year ago but hasn't been in the best of form while Nocturnal Affair hasn't quite been at his best since returning from Dubai in the spring, though he was in fine form at this time a year ago.
Bajan Tryst (USA) 33-1 (9-0) Held up towards rear stand side, ridden over 1f out, never dangerous, 14th of 20, 7l behind Doc Hay (8-11) at Doncaster 6f hcp (2) gd in Sep.
Elusive Ridge (IRE) 14-1 (9-7) Tracked leaders, 4th entering straight, no extra from over 1f out, weakened, 14th of 17, 10l behind Lily's Angel (9-4) at Leopardstown 7f hcp gd in Sep.
Jembatt (IRE) 33-1 (9-6) Always towards rear, 12th of 14, 9l behind Russian Soul (9-3) at Dundalk 1m hcp pol in Sep.
Nocturnal Affair (SAF) 8-1 (9-9) Towards rear, ridden inside final furlong, one pace, 8th of 12, 4 1/2l behind Sole Power (9-9) at Doncaster 5f listed stks (1) gd in Sep.
Pencil Hill (IRE) 5-1 (10-0) Chased leaders, 6th over 2f out, no impression under pressure and kept on same pace from over 1f out, 7th of 10, 7l behind Calm Bay (8-9) at Dundalk 5f hcp pol in Jul.
Core Element (IRE) 14-1 (9-0) Chased leaders, 6th halfway, ridden in 5th 2f out, soon no extra, 13th of 16, 12l behind Bubbly Bellini (9-0) at Curragh 6f hcp in Sep.
Balmont Mast (IRE) 5-1fav (9-9) Chased leaders, 7th halfway, ridden and progress 2f out, 4th 1 1/2f out, stayed on well in 2nd final furlong, 2nd of 14, 1/2l behind The Reaper (10-0) at Dundalk 6f hcp pol in Aug.
Burj Alzain (IRE) 14-1 (9-0) Held up, headway over 2f out, soon switched right and challenging, unble to quicken entering final furlong, kept on same pace, 3rd of 11, 1 3/4l behind Pearl Mix (8-10) at Kempton 1m stks (3yo+) (4) pol in Sep.
Invincible Ridge (IRE) 12-1 (9-0) Prominent, 2nd halfway, ridden and no extra 1 1/2f out, kept on one pace, 7th of 16, 5l behind Bubbly Bellini (9-0) at Curragh 6f hcp in Sep.
Norville (IRE) 25-1 (9-2) Reluctant to enter stalls, tracked leader in 2nd, ridden in 3rd entering straight, no extra from over 1f out, 11th of 17, 8l behind Lily's Angel (9-4) at Leopardstown 7f hcp gd in Sep.
Rock Jock (IRE) 40-1 (9-0) 14th of 15, 20l behind Invincible Ash (8-9) at Meydan(UAE) 5f cond Stakes std in Mar.
Six of Hearts 14-1 (9-7) Waited with, 7th approaching straight, soon no impression under pressure, last of 8, 38l behind Ondeafears (8-7) at Listowel 7f hcp hvy in Sep.
Experience (IRE) 14-1 (9-0) Tracked leaders, 3rd halfway, ridden 2f out and no extra inside final furlong, 6th of 11, 6l behind Maarek (9-8) at Curragh 6f Grp 3 (1) in Sep.
Slim Chance (IRE) 10-1 (9-3) Held up towards rear, ridden into 7th 1f out, no extra final furlong, kept on one pace, 7th of 11, 7l behind Stones Peak (8-10) at Curragh 6f fll hcp in Aug.