Testing conditions are the name of the game for Pete The Feat, who was in superb form at this time a year ago and returned to winning ways at Fontwell three weeks ago. Sir Du Bearn is back on the same mark as when successful at Stratford last October and ran his best race for a long time at Ffos Las two weeks ago. Beamazed is much better than his form figures and lowly rating suggests as the fences keep getting in his way but he could spring a surprise with a clear round though HUNTERS LODGE looks the one to be on. He scored at Cheltenham in October and is only 4lb higher despite running well in a much better race at Sandown last time. Winning point-to-pointer Bob Ford makes his handicap debut but should stay this marathon trip having scored over 3m on heavy ground over hurdles.
Across The Bay (IRE) 11-1 (11-3) Prominent, not fluent 11th, struggling from 15th (canal turn), 8th of 22, 22l behind Chance Du Roy (10-6) at Aintree 3m 2f hcp chs G3 (1) sft.
Pete The Feat (IRE) 5-2 (11-12) Took keen hold, always prominent, jumped right throughout, led 6th, hard ridden when hit last, kept on under pressure, won at Fontwell 3m 2f hcp chs 0-135 (3) gs beating Firm Order (11-1) by 1 3/4l, 6 ran.
Sir Du Bearn (FR) 10-1 (11-11) Held up in touch on inside, headway 12th, went 2nd 3 out (usual 4 out), ridden and kept on under pressure approaching 2 out, held flat, 2nd of 7, 2 1/2l behind Relax (11-8) at Ffos Las 3m 1f hcp chs 0-135 (3) hvy.
Ballyoliver 16-1 (10-13) Towards rear, headway into mid-division 11th, in touch 14th, driven to chase leaders 3 out (usual 4 out), no impression from next, 5th of 13, 13l behind Standing Ovation (10-2) at Wincanton 3m 1f listed hcp chs (1) gs in Nov.
Herdsman (IRE) 11-2 (11-5) Tracked leaders in 4th, went 3rd 11th, went 2nd 4 out, driven and no impression on winner between last 2, plugged on flat and well clear of 3rd, 2nd of 7, 2l behind Tutchec (10-10) at Carlisle 3m 2f hcp chs 0-135 (3) gs.
Bob Ford (IRE) 15-8fav (10-11) Led, driven 3 out, headed before next, rallied after last, kept on well closing stages, 2nd of 5, 2l behind Mendip Express (11-4) at Bangor 3m nov chs (3) sft in Nov.
Hunters Lodge (IRE) 25-1 (10-5) Chased leaders, dropped to mid-division 13th, ran on flat, snatched 6th final strides, 6th of 13, 8l behind There's No Panic (10-7) at Sandown 3m 5f hcp chs 0-150 (2) gd.
Wellforth (IRE) 12-1 (10-9) With leader until weakened before 2 out, 6th of 9, 9l behind Alderley Rover (10-13) at Bangor 3m hcp hdl 0-135 (3) sft in Nov.
Beamazed 9-1 (11-10) Held up in touch in 4th, blundered 10th, outpaced from 12th, 3rd of 5, 35l behind Across The Bay (11-10) at Carlisle 3m grad ch (2) hvy in Nov '12.
Monsieur Cadou (FR) 12-1 (11-6) Held up in rear, blundered 8th, mistake 12th, outpaced 4 out, weakened 3 out, tailed off, last of 8, well behind Global Power (11-1) at Carlisle 3m 2f hcp chs 0-135 (3) hvy in Nov.