Squirrel Wood certainly wouldn't be winning out of turn and is likely to be in the firing-line again. Fonterutoli won off a higher mark over course and distance last winter but Hamble hasn't shown much on the all-weather so far while Gypsy Rider finished a distant last on his only previous try over a mile. Stamina could also be a problem for Birdie Queen but three of UNCLE FRED's four victories have come over the trip and Patrick Chamings' eight-year-old has done enough lately to suggest he's back on a decent mark - the top weight gets the nod.
Uncle Fred 16-1 (8-12) Dwelt, behind, headway over 1f out, never on terms, 6th of 10, 3l behind Sonnetation (9-4) at Lingfield 1m hcp 0-60 (6) pol.
Gypsy Rider 16-1 (9-0) Held up towards rear, headway over 2f out, chased leaders over 1f out, stayed on to 3rd inside final furlong, 3rd of 14, 2l behind One Last Dream (9-4) at Kempton 7f hcp (6) pol in Oct.
Hamble 5-1fav (8-6) Mid-division, headway 2f out, one pace final furlong, 6th of 15, 2 1/2l behind Minimee (8-6) at Yarmouth 7f hcp 0-65 (6) sft in Oct.
Birdie Queen 14-1 (9-0) Slowly into stride, soon in touch, pushed along halfway, kept on same pace inside final furlong, 7th of 16, 3 1/2l behind Tiger's Home (9-0) at Bath 6f 3yo app hcp 0-60 (6) gf in Sep.
Squirrel Wood (IRE) 15-8fav (9-5) Held up towards rear, headway on inside 2f out, ridden chasing leaders over 1f out, went 2nd inside final furlong, no impression on winner, 2nd of 13, 1 3/4l behind Sweet Vintage (9-1) at Kempton 7f hcp (6) pol in Oct.
Fonterutoli (IRE) 10-1 (8-13) Chased leader, ridden over 1f out, lost 2nd over 1f out, weakened entering final furlong, 8th of 13, 9l behind Bobs Her Uncle (9-9) at Kempton 1m 2f hcp (0-65) (6) pol in Oct.
Norphin 10-1 (9-4) Held up towardcs rear, headway centre over 2f out, driven into one paced 4th inside final furlong, 4th of 10, 11l behind Sword of The Lord (9-9) at Brighton 1m 3yo hcp 0-60 (6) sft in Oct.
Cativo Cavallino 16-1 (9-1) Took keen hold chasing leaders on inside, ridden over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 7th of 13, 8l behind Sonnetation (9-2) at Kempton 1m hcp (6) pol in Oct.
Cuthbert (IRE) 20-1 (8-4) Awkwardly away, never on terms, 10th of 12, 15l behind The Great Gabrial (9-7) at Lingfield 7f hcp 0-60 (6) pol in Aug.
Arte Del Calcio 25-1 (8-10) Slowly away, in rear, headway over 2f out, soon ridden, kept on inside final furlong, 4th of 10, 6l behind April Ciel (9-7) at Chepstow 1m 2f hcp 0-65 (6) hvy in Sep.
First Glance 28-1 (8-7) Mid-division, pushed along over 2f out, soon ridden, weakened over 1f out, 7th of 13, 11l behind Red Paladin (9-2) at Doncaster 7f hcp 0-70 (5) gf in Aug.
Litmus (USA) 28-1 (8-9) Mid-division, driven to chase leaders over 2f out, ridden and headway on outside final furlong, stayed on to chase winner towards finish, 2nd of 11, 1/2l behind Pim Street (8-12) at Wolverhampton 1m 1f hcp 0-60 (6) pol.