Nicky Henderson has a promising newcomer in the first division and plenty will be doubling up on The Queen's Close Touch, who is a full brother to staying hurdler Open Hearted. This may be a bit sharp, however, and WILLIE GUNN's pedigree suggests he may have more speed. Owned by J P McManus, the selection's dam won over 1m2f on the Flat and over hurdles and, as well as being a full sister to the top-class Bob's Worth, is from the same family as a couple of classic winners. Black Sambuca looks the best of those with experience but should be no match for the newcomers.
Black Sambuca 33-1 (10-10) Tracked leader, chased winner over 4f out until over 2f out, one pace, 3rd of 10, 23l behind Ballincurrig (10-12) at Southwell 2m cond NH flat (6) sft in Apr.
Classic Case (IRE) 8-1 (10-11) Alw pr & ld, adv 2out, hdd last, no ex late, 2nd of 16, 3l behind Supermightyfine (11-7) at Lingstown 3m ire ptp gs in Dec.
Master Ted (IRE) 25-1 (11-3) Ran green in rear, behind 6f out, never on terms, 9th of 12, 41l behind Aeschylus (11-3) at Towcester 2m NH flat (6) gd in Apr.
Close Touch Generous gelding out of Romantic Dream.
Goodtoknow Presenting gelding out of Atlantic Jane.
Wake Your Dreams (IRE) Oscar gelding out of Rose Karanja.
Willie Gunn (IRE) Westerner gelding out of Last Theatre.
Cj Mackintosh 25-1 (10-7) Mid-division, outpaced 4f out, ridden to chase leaders 3f out, kept on same pace final 2f, never on terms, 4th of 9, 21l behind Forever Present (10-12) at Market Rasen 2m 1f mares n h flat (6) sft in Apr.
Elsie Sweet (IRE) Saffron Walden filly out of Mount Grace.
Kitridge Lane 16-1 (10-3) Tracked leaders, driven over 4f out, weakened 3f out, tailed off, 7th of 9, well behind Forever Present (10-12) at Market Rasen 2m 1f mares n h flat (6) sft in Apr.