The Cheltenham fences proved too much for Loch Ba at The Festival and he was already struggling when unseating Dominic Elsworth. He was impressive when scoring over 3m here previously, however, and shouldn't be written off just yet. Cedre Bleu is tried in blinkers after falling at Chepstow last time and is another for the short-list while Ballyoliver bounced back to form at Ludlow last month and won over course and distance at the start of December. Despite winning a shade cosily here before Christmas, HANDY ANDY remains well handicapped and the form of that victory has been franked. Colin Tizzard's seven-year-old has won three of his four starts here and finished third in the other and can continue his love affair with the track by landing this. Rhum won over this trip at Wincanton last month and looks the danger ahead of the more exposed Alderluck.
On Trend (IRE) 33-1 (11-9) Always behind, tailed off when pulled up before last (usual 2 out), in a race won by Same Difference (11-0) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Amateur Handicap Chase (0-145) (5yo+) (2) gs, 24 ran.
Loch Ba (IRE) 8-1 (10-10) Behind when blundered and unseated rider 9th, in a race won by Golden Chieftain (10-2) at Cheltenham 3m hcp chs G3 (1) sft, 24 ran.
As De Fer (FR) 7-2 (11-5) Held up, headway approaching 4th, challenged 7th, led next, hedaed 9th, blundered 11th, weakened before 5 out, tailed off, 6th of 8, 49l behind Kilcrea Asla (9-12) at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp chs 0-140 (3) sft.
Cedre Bleu (FR) 11-4fav (11-4) Prominent, not fluent and led 3rd, headed next, ridden and every chance after 2 out, 1 length 3rd when fell last, in a race won by Carrickboy (10-12) at Chepstow 2m 3f hcp chs (2) hvy in Jan, 9 ran.
Mister Marker (IRE) 18-1 (11-7) Led, headed 11th, remained close up, outpaced 2 out, kept on same pace from last, 4th of 8, 4 1/2l behind Rolecarr (11-1) at Kelso 2m 7f Am hcp chs 0-135 (3) hvy in Feb.
Ballyoliver 13-2 (10-10) Tracked leaders, went 2nd from 13th, led 4 out, driven out, won at Ludlow 3m hcp chs 0-140 (3) gs in Feb beating Grove Pride (11-0) by 1l, 9 ran.
Alderluck (IRE) 8-1 (11-5) Held up in last trio, mistake 9th, blundered 14th, driven in 7th and struggling in 5th after 4 out, plugged on, stayed on and pressed for 3rd in closing stages, never going pace to get involved, 4th of 9, 16l behind Emperor's Choice (11-10) at Lingfield 3m 4f hcp chs 0-130 (3) hvy in Feb.
Handy Andy (IRE) 9-4fav (11-0) Chased leader, 3rd until 11th, chased leader, ridden before 4 out, led again 3 out, driven before last, stayed on well under pressure flat, won at Newbury 3m nov hcp chs 0-125 (3) sft in Dec beating Chartreux (11-10) by 2 1/4l, 8 ran.
Only Witness (IRE) 16-1 (11-0) Prominent, jumped big and reminder 11th, mistake 14th, jumped slowly and lost place 15th, behind 17th, tailed off, 7th of 8, well behind Richard's Sundance (11-5) at Sandown 3m hcp chs 0-135 (3) sft in Feb.
Rhum (FR) 12-1 (11-9) Made all, jumped right and mistake 1st, jumped right next, not fluent 5th or 7th, clear last, ridden out, won at Wincanton 3m 1f hcp chs 0-120 (4) hvy in Jan beating Flying Award (11-5) by 1 3/4l, 7 ran.