Billybo would have been the selection here had he not been engaged to run at Fontwell yesterday afternoon. If taking part on the south coast, he's unlikely to turn up here less than 24 hours later. Matmata De Tendron is well treated on his old form but appears on the downgrade while Shooting Times has much to prove over fences and hasn't raced since June. Samson Collonges had Billsgrey well behind when scoring over C&D two runs ago and beat SAM PATCH over 2m4f here last month. He is now on a hat-trick but Donald Whillans charge is 5lb better off now and can reverse the form and grab a deserved first win over fences.
Shooting Times 11-4fav (11-9) Raced in last pair, pushed along from 5th, ridden and stayed on to go 3rd flat, no impression with front pair, 3rd of 6, 9l behind Cuban Piece (11-9) at Cartmel 3m 2f hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gd in Jun.
Billsgrey (IRE) 7-4fav (10-12) Tracked leader, led before 3 out, pushed along and headed before last, soon weakened, 3rd of 5, 37l behind Samson Collonges (10-0) at Hexham 3m 1f hcp chs 0-95 (5) sft in Nov.
Sam Patch 4-1 (11-3) In rear and in touch, ridden and weant 3rd before last, kept on to chase winner towards finish, 2nd of 5, 2 1/2l behind Samson Collonges (10-7) at Hexham 2m 4f nov hcp chs 0-95 (5) hvy in Nov.
Matmata de Tendron (FR) 10-1 (9-9) With winner, pushed along before 12th, in 4th when blundered badly 4 out, soon weakened, 6th of 10, 45l behind Boris The Blade (11-12) at Newcastle 3m hcp 0-100 (5) hvy.
Samson Collonges (FR) 7-4fav (10-7) Tracked leaders in 3rd, jumped slow 3 out, outpaced 2 out, stayed on to lead last 100 yards, won at Hexham 2m 4f nov hcp chs 0-95 (5) hvy in Nov beating Sam Patch (11-3) by 2 1/2l, 5 ran.
Billybo 4-7fav (10-0) Made all, clear from 3 out, very easily, won at Towcester 3m hcp chs 0-95 (5) sft beating Kilcascan (11-5) by 36l, 4 ran.