Maraafeq may finally be edging towards a decent mark while blinkers could spark a revival in Moleskin. Victor Dartnall also saddle Dancing Mist after a lay-off and Wheels Up will have benefited from last month's run at Bangor. Epee Celeste has been knocking on the door but Strongbows Legend continues to frustrate and was well beaten off today's mark at Exeter last month. Sea Saffron has claims on his best form and Azulada Bay won at Fontwell two runs ago but we're prepared to give another chance to WESTERN WHISKY, who would have gone close over C&D last time had he not unseated Choc Thornton and looks to be on a decent mark at present.
Moleskin (IRE) 13-2 (11-4) Slight lead but pressed, blundered and headed 12th, soon lost place, went modest 4th and went right 2 out, tired and went right last, 4th of 9, well behind Hold On Julio (11-4) at Sandown 3m hcp chs 0-125 (3) gs in Nov.
Wheels Up (IRE) 10-1 (11-8) Tracked leader, challenged 10th, lost place 3 out, weakened before next, 5th of 7, 24l behind Milo Milan (11-3) at Bangor 2m 4f hcp chs 0-120 (4) gs in Nov.
Maraafeq (USA) 16-1 (11-0) Held up mid-division, towards rear from 5th, blundered 5 out when weakening, 5th of 9, 16l behind Rockiteer (11-9) at Ludlow 3m hcp chs 0-120 (4) gd in Nov.
Dancing Mist (IRE) 8-1 (11-12) Pressed winner throughout, reminder 13th, driven after 4 out, stayed on gamely, held towards finish, 2nd of 9, 1 1/2l behind Over The Creek (11-8) at Exeter 3m 6f hcp chs 0-120 (3) gd in Apr '10.
Strongbows Legend 7-2 (10-13) Mid-division, hit 9th, headway next, ridden after 13th, weakened approaching last, tailed off, 8th of 15, 49l behind Fortification (11-3) at Exeter 3m hcp chs 0-125 (3) gd in Nov.
Sea Saffron 20-1 (10-2) In touch, ridden 4 out, kept on one pace, 3rd of 9, 19l behind Palace Jester (11-6) at Ffos Las 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) sft in Nov.
Plum Pudding (FR) 10-1 (11-7) Prominent, hampered 8th, hit 13th, blundered and lost place next, not able to get back on terms, 4th of 10, 16l behind Victory Gunner (11-4) at Ffos Las 3m hcp chs 0-115 (4) sft in Nov.
Western Whisky (FR) 85-40fav (10-11) Tracked leaders, went 2nd 7th, blundered and unseated rider 11th, in a race won by Roseneath (11-6) at Hereford 3m 1f hcp chs 0-125 (3) gd in Nov, 5 ran.
Azulada Bay (IRE) 13-8fav (11-13) Tracked leader, ridden before 2 out, weakened after last, 4th of 6, 22l behind Always Bold (11-12) at Fontwell 3m 3f hcp hdl 0-95 (5) sft in Nov.
Might As Well 12-1 (11-3) Behind, mistake 5th, hit 5 out, outpaced next, never on terms, 8th of 13, 35l behind Valley View (10-12) at Towcester 2m 3f hcp chs 0-110 (4) gd in Nov.
Star of Germany (IRE) 50-1 (11-9) Mid-division, outpaced 9th, weakened 3 out, tailed off, 11th of 13, well behind Valley View (10-12) at Towcester 2m 3f hcp chs 0-110 (4) gd in Nov.
Epee Celeste (FR) 7-2fav (10-9) Close up on outside, disputed lead 7th, driven and lost place approaching 2 out, stayed on under presure to go 3rd flat, no impression, 3rd of 13, 5l behind Valley View (10-12) at Towcester 2m 3f hcp chs 0-110 (4) gd in Nov.