With a pipe-opener at Bangor under his belt, the ex-French Marescou could be interesting and is preferred to stablemate and C&D winner Latanier on these terms. This may be too tough for recent Hereford winner Gentleman Anshan but top weight Cootehill is definitely worth a second look and Just Amazing had good form in hunter chases last season. Wessex King could figure if on a going day but the forecast better ground and drop in distance should suit POLITEO and the six-year-old can notch his first success for Nick Williams since arriving from Ireland last summer. Persian Gates may be the pick of the remainder, despite returning from a break.
Cootehill (IRE) 7-2 (11-5) Held up mid-division, headway after 5 out, led 3 out, hit last, headed run-in, kept on, 2nd of 8, 1 1/4l behind Drumbaloo (11-1) at Ludlow 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) gd in Mar.
Just Amazing (IRE) 25-1 (12-0) Mid-division in touch when blundered and unseated rider 9th, in a race won by Salsify (12-0) at Cheltenham 3m 2f hts chs (2) gd in Mar, 22 ran.
Schindler's Gold (IRE) 100-1 (10-3) Mid-division, ridden and struggling 12th, soon behind, tailed off, 16th of 22, well behind Salut Flo (10-10) at Cheltenham 2m 5f hcp chs G3 (1) gd in Mar.
Persian Gates (IRE) 8-1 (10-8) Mid-division, not fluent 4th, headway 9th, hit 4 out, well held by leaders from 3 out, 5th of 14, 24l behind Chance Du Roy (11-4) at Newbury 2m 4f hcp chs 0-145 (2) gd in Nov.
Politeo (FR) 12-1 (11-5) Held up in rear, jumped slowly 6th, steady headway 12th, ridden along in 4th before 4 out, went 3rd 4 out, stayed on to 2nd under pressure before last, never any chance with very easy winner, 2nd of 9, 11l behind Victors Serenade (11-5) at Ffos Las 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) sft in Mar.
Gentleman Anshan (IRE) 11-8fav (11-1) Took keen hold, jumped boldly, soon with leader, led 6th, clear from 3 out, easily, won at Hereford 2m 5f hcp chs 0-120 (4) gd in Mar beating Crannaghmore Boy (10-9) by 10l, 3 ran.
Wessex King (IRE) 5-1 (10-9) Led, ridden and headed 4 out, weakened before 3 out, blundered and unseated rider 2 out, in a race won by Time Out (11-4) at Doncaster 2m 3f hcp chs 0-135 (3) gd in Mar, 5 ran.
Latanier (FR) 16-1 (10-0) Held up in touch, hit 5 out, ridden and weakened before next, 7th of 8, 33l behind Chance Du Roy (11-10) at Haydock 2m 4f hcp chs 0-145 (2) gs in Mar.
Marescsou (FR) 11-2 (11-8) Tracked leaders, jumped slowly 3rd, not fluent 6th, went 2nd 4 out until not fluent next, weakened 2 out, 4th of 5, 26l behind Fabalu (11-7) at Bangor 3m hcp chs 0-130 (3) gd in Feb.
Dantari (IRE) 9-4 (11-11) Tracked leaders, blundered 2nd, mistake next, pushed along after 12th, close 3rd from 4 out, 3 lengths off winner when mistake last, no impression after, one pace, 3rd of 4, 6l behind Up To The Mark (11-9) at Ludlow 2m 4f hcp chs 0-120 (4) gd in Mar.