Unbeaten in bumpers, SHUTTHEFRONTDOOR is likely to start a short-price on his return to action. He got the better of Village Vic, fifth in a Grade 2 event at Cheltenham on Sunday, when last seen at the track in February and Jonjo O'Neill's charge looks a promising recruit to the hurdling ranks. Explained could prove next best as the dual bumper winner ran well enough on his hurdling bow at Uttoxeter despite fading badly in the closing stages. Chain Reactor and Vicator cut little ice on their respective debuts over timber while Phone Home has his first start under Rules having finished runner-up in point-to-point back in March.
Chain Reactor 25-1 (11-7) Chased leaders on outside, lost place after halfway, soon lost touch, tailed off, last of 10, well behind Puffin Billy (11-7) at Ascot 2m NH flat (6) gs.
Explained (IRE) 5-1 (10-12) In touch, went 2nd before 3rd until approaching 3 out, soon weakened, mistake 2 out, 3rd of 10, 38l behind Coneygree (10-12) at Uttoxeter 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) sft.
Phone Home (IRE) 7-1 (11-4) Tr ldrs 8th 1/2way, 5th 3out, ld 2out, hdd last, ko, 2nd of 16, 1l behind Forever Gold (11-4) at Oldtown 3m ire ptp sft in Mar.
Shutthefrontdoor (IRE) 10-3fav (11-2) Held up in mid-division, shaken up to improve over 3f out, ridden and hung left from 2f out, challenged 1f out, driven to lead close home, won at Newbury 2m Listed NH flat (1) gs in Feb beating Village Vic (11-2) by shd, 12 ran.
Vicator 33-1 (10-12) Held up towards rear, weakened before 3 out, 7th of 11, well behind The Romford Pele (10-12) at Taunton 2m 1f nh nov hdl (3) gd.