STONETHROWER has been astutely placed by Tim Vaughan to land a couple of hurdles but will find this a tougher task conceding 12lb to a pair of potentially useful recruits from bumper company. However, his stamina is assured over this trip and he can make the most of his experience to complete the hat-trick. Mercury Bay and Mike Towey are both graduates of the Irish point-to-point scene and have shown more than enough in bumpers to suggest that they have a future over timber. Preference is for the Welsh raider now that the Bowen yard has exploded into form as is often the case at this time of year and he rates the danger.
Stonethrower (IRE) 1-2fav (11-2) Made all, not fluent 8th, ridden and edged left flat, ran on, won at Wincanton 2m 6f nh nov hdl (4) gf beating Vicpol (10-9) by 2 1/2l, 7 ran.
Bitta Dash 100-1 (11-3) Always towards rear, ridden and struggling 6th, tailed off, 8th of 9, well behind Lundy Sky (11-3) at Exeter 2m 7f nh nov hdl (4) gs in Mar.
Grindy (IRE) 28-1 (11-0) Held up in touch, took keen hold, not fluent 5th, ridden and lost place next, behind from 7th, 5th of 9, 30l behind Countess Susy (10-2) at Hereford 2m 4f mdn hdl (5) gf in Apr.
Half Mast (IRE) 20-1 (10-9) Tracked leaders, took keen hold, several big jumps, lost place and ridden 8th, weakened well before 3 out, fell after, in a race won by Oasis Knight (10-12) at Aintree 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gd, 7 ran.
Mercury Bay (IRE) 9-2 (11-9) Tracked leaders, led over 4f out, ridden and headed over 1f out, one pace, 3rd of 8, 10l behind Black Thunder (10-12) at Newton Abbot 2m 1f NH flat (6) gf.
Mike Towey (IRE) 5-6fav (11-3) Tracked leader, led 8f out, clear 2f out, idled from over 1f out, ridden out, won at Hereford 2m 1f NH flat (6) gf in Apr beating Bollistick (11-3) by 6l, 5 ran.