This looks very open, so it's only a tentative nod in the direction of MAD JACK DUNCAN, marginally preferred to Missoula and Balthazar King. The selection should have run at Warwick over the weekend, but his chances were scuppered by the weather. He should have learned from his hurdles debut when he made some mistakes, and improvement's to be expected. He looks the pick of the two Alan King runners, given the eye-catching booking of Robert Thornton. Missoula is the better looking of two entries from Suzie Smith, who's coming here just for this contest. Well down the field in the Cesarewitch, she won on her only hurdles outing to date, albeit back in March, since when she's returned to the flat. Balthazar King was cost chance of victory last time out by a mistake when in with every chance, and is likely to be at the vanguard once more. It's a bit of a pin-stickers' race this though, with a big field set to face the starter, and not a great deal of hurdling form, but we marginally favour Mad Jack Duncan.
Bally Sands (IRE) Luso gelding out of Sandwell Old Rose.
Balthazar King (IRE) 5-1 (10-12) Tracked leaders from 3rd, led 4th, headed when mistake 3 out, weakened 2 out, 4th of 9, 18l behind Tragic Realm (10-9) at Ludlow 2m 5f nh nov hdl (4) gs in Nov.
Cosmic Messenger (FR) 100-1 (9-4) Always in rear, driven on outer and struggling over 4f out, tailed off, 11th of 13, 34l behind Miss Serena (8-7) at Kempton 2m hcap (6) pol in Sept (Flat).
Fruity O'Rooney 66-1 (11-3) Mid-division, headway 7f out, weakened over 3f out, 10th of 14, well behind Diamond Harry (11-7) at Newbury 2m nhf (2) sft in Mar.
King Edmund 5-1 (11-7) Led, headed 3f out, weakened over 1f out, 7th of 11, 20l behind Strategic Approach (11-3) at Newbury 2m nhf (5) gs in Mar.
Long Hop (IRE) 25-1 (10-13) Held up in rear, steady headway 6f out, ridden 3f out, soon edged left, beaten over 1f out, 5th of 16, 6l behind Knockara Beau (11-9) at Aintree 2m 1f nhf (4) gd in May.
Mad Jack Duncan (IRE) 14-1 (11-0) Mid-division, mistake 7th, blundered 9th, weakened approaching 3 out, 8th of 15, well behind Tisfreetdream (10-11) at Stratford 2m 6f mdn hdl (3) gd in Oct.
Near The Water (IRE) 16-1 (10-12) Held up towards rear, hit 3rd, headway after 5th, ridden after 3 out, weakened next, 5th of 13, 27l behind Mont Present (10-6) at Fontwell 2m 4f cnd nov hdl (4) gd in Nov.
Nicobar (FR) 6-4 (12-5) Led to 15; mist 2 out; wknd rap, 4th of 5, 28l behind Jack's Present (11-12) at Parham 3m ptp gd in Apr.
Rear Gunner (IRE) Evensfav (12-0) Rn out 7 ran out in race won by Took My Eye (12-0) at Higham 3m ptp gf in Apr, 12 ran.
The Wedding Horse (IRE) (12-0) won at Kirkistown 3m ire ptp gs in Mar beating Kildowney Nipper (12-0) by 4l, 12 ran.
Tinchel (IRE) 25-1 (11-0) Held up, hit 1st, headway 4th, weakened 2 out, 3rd of 7, 15l behind Zilcash (10-9) at Towcester 2m nov hdl (4) gf in Apr '07.
Classical Act 50-1 (10-12) Mid-division, hampered over 5f out, soon beaten, 8th of 14, 30l behind Kerada (10-12) at Fontwell 2m 2f mrs nhf (6) gd in Nov.
Jordan 12-1 (11-2) Held up in touch, lost place 7f out, no chance after, 6th of 16, 12l behind Mewstone (10-9) at Uttoxeter 2m mrs nhf (6) sft in Apr.
Missoula (IRE) 6-1 (10-7) Tracked leaders, mistake 7th, ridden after 3 out, one pace from next, 4th of 8, 15l behind Honour High (11-10) at Fontwell 2m 6f nov hdl (4) gs in Mar.
Toomuchinformation 100-1 (10-9) In touch until over 4f out, 12th of 14, 38l behind Kerada (10-12) at Fontwell 2m 2f mrs nhf (6) gd in Nov.