Haydock winner Any Given Day returns from over a year off the track but has gone well fresh before and is not easily overlooked. Bakbenscher has also won at Haydock but that was only a week ago and he has a penalty to contend with while El Dancer is upped in class after going very close at Lingfield last time. SALUBRIOUS had the re-opposing Princely Player well behind at Newbury when runner-up to At Fishers Cross, a subsequent winner at Cheltenham. Paul Nicholls' hurdler may have the edge in this with Harry Derham's claim helping his cause and he gets the vote. African Gold has won a couple of novice events and we'll find out how good he is today in this much better company.
Any Given Day (IRE) 15-2 (11-2) Held up in last pair in touch, 4th and ridden before last, no impression with leaders, 4th of 5, 17l behind Oscar Whisky (11-6) at Cheltenham 2m 4f hdl G2 (1) gd in Dec '11.
Bouggler 28-1 (11-4) Chased leaders, weakened and eased before 2 out, tailed off, last of 13, well behind Goulanes (10-2) at Cheltenham 3m 1f Listed hcp hdl (1) sft in Nov.
Bakbenscher 4-1fav (10-13) Held up mid-division, headway before 2 out, soon chasing leaders, led after last, stayed on well, won at Haydock 2m 4f hcp hdl (2) hvy beating Top Wood (10-8) by 3 1/2l, 10 ran.
El Dancer (GER) 8-1 (11-3) Held up in rear, headway approaching 4 out, led after next, headed 2 out, rallied flat, kept on well, 2nd of 9, 3/4l behind Grafite (10-2) at Lingfield 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-140 (3) hvy.
Salubrious (IRE) 5-2fav (11-3) Held up behind, headway into mid-division 5th, chased leaders under pressure before 2 out, ridden to challenge and every chance after last, not pace of winer final 110 yards, 2nd of 10, 6l behind At Fishers Cross (10-10) at Newbury 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-150 (2) sft.
Princely Player (IRE) 9-2 (11-10) Tracked leaders on inside, not fluent 5th, driven 2 out, ridden and no impression before last, 5th of 10, 18l behind At Fishers Cross (10-10) at Newbury 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-150 (2) sft.
Dolatulo (FR) 14-1 (10-8) Tracked leader, led after 3 out, headed before next, weakening when mistake last, 6th of 12, 17l behind Petit Robin (11-5) at Sandown 2m Listed hcp hdl (1) sft.
African Gold (IRE) 8-1 (11-10) Chased leaders, led 3 out, soon strongly challenged, held on under pressure, all out, won at Newbury 2m 5f nov hcp hdl 0-120 (4) sft in Nov beating Faultless Feelings (11-4) by 3 1/2l, 12 ran.
Top Of The Range (IRE) 14-1 (11-5) Mid-division, outpaced on outside 3 out, never reached leaders, 5th of 17, 24l behind Dark Lover (11-8) at Cheltenham 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) hvy.