Sametegal had no chance with My Tent Or Yours and The New One in the Christmas Hurdle last time but should find this easier. Lyvius has come into form and won at Kempton last month while Strongpoint stayed on strongly to win a similar race over course and distance last month. LOCAL HERO was beaten six lengths in third that day with Runswick Royal a further two lengths away in fourth but Steve Gollings' charge was having his first run for seven months and is 7lb better off. Suited by sharp tracks, he can take his revenge today and land this under useful 7lb claimer Paul Bohan. Yorkist, who is seeking a four-timer, and Clever Cookie, are upped in grade but Orsippus would have a chance on his best form, though probably needs further nowadays.
Sametegal (FR) 12-1 (11-7) Chased leaders, effort when mistake 3 out, soon hard driven, stayed on to go modest 3rd after next, never able to challenge, 3rd of 6, 29l behind My Tent Or Yours (11-7) at Kempton 2m hdl G1 (1) sft in Dec.
Lyvius 5-2fav (11-4) Raced wide and held up towards rear, headway on outside to chase leaders before 2 out, led and went right 2 out, joined and strongly pressed flat, battled on gamely under pressure to gain advantage last strides, won at Kempton 2m hcp hdl 0-140 (3) sft in Jan beating Deep Trouble (11-5) by hd, 10 ran.
Local Hero (GER) 14-1 (11-5) Held up in touch, went 3rd before 3 out, ridden before 2 out, every chance before last, kept on, 3rd of 14, 6l behind Strongpoint (11-2) at Musselburgh 2m hcp hdl (2) sft in Jan.
Runswick Royal (IRE) 17-2 (11-5) Held up mid-division, headway before 2 out, kept on same pace, 4th of 14, 8l behind Strongpoint (11-2) at Musselburgh 2m hcp hdl (2) sft in Jan.
Strongpoint (IRE) 9-1 (11-2) Led to 3rd, led again before 2 out, kept on well, won at Musselburgh 2m hcp hdl (2) sft in Jan beating Ifandbutwhynot (11-11) by 4l, 14 ran.
Orsippus (USA) 10-1 (10-9) Led early, pressed winner until 2 out (normal 5 out), one pace on home turn, no impression, weakened over 1f out, 4th of 7, 37l behind Ely Brown (10-1) at Aintree 3m hcp hdl (2) gd in Oct.
Yorkist (IRE) 11-8fav (11-2) Tracked leaders, took keen hold, closed 5th, went 2nd 3 out, led before next, clear when not fluent last, easily, won at Market Rasen 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-120 (4) hvy in Jan beating Cappielow Park (10-1) by 10l, 6 ran.
Pas Trop Tard (FR) 25-1 (11-5) Chased leader, ridden before 3 out, weakened before 2 out, 6th of 12, 31l behind Master Of The Game (11-3) at Doncaster 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-140 (3) gs in Jan.
Franciscan 10-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, ridden before 2 out, weakened before last, 7th of 10, 14l behind Makari (11-0) at Doncaster 2m hcp hdl (2) gd in Dec.
Dumbarton (IRE) 9-1 (11-5) Held up in touch, headway after 7th, outpaced after 3 out, weakened next, tailed off, last of 7, well behind Calculated Risk (11-7) at Sedgefield 2m 4f (3) sft in Dec.
Sky Khan 8-1 (11-8) Held up towards rear, headway before 3 out, weakened last, 5th of 9, 14l behind Clever Cookie (10-12) at Musselburgh 2m hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gs in Jan.
Clever Cookie 11-2 (10-12) Held up behind, headway before 3 out, went 2nd and hit 2 out, challenged last, kept on to lead towards finish, won at Musselburgh 2m hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gs in Jan beating Titus Bolt (10-9) by nk, 9 ran.
All That Remains (IRE) 12-1 (11-8) Mid-division on outside, headway approaching 3 out, stayed on one pace before next, 4th of 11, 12l behind If In Doubt (11-8) at Towcester 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) gs in Nov.