Victor Hewgo won twice over longer trips last year and may find conceding lumps of weight all round beyond him on his return after a break. BALLINVARRIG, twice narrowly beaten in Irish point-to-points, was beaten less than a length on his debut under Rules in a bumper at Uttoxeter and with that under his belt can get off the mark on his hurdling debut. Coquet Head has been going strongly between the flags and will know his job while Firth Of The Clyde came up against a very useful type in Broadway Buffalo here last month and won't find one like him amongst these rivals. He looks a threat as does another winning point-to-pointer Indian Castle, who makes his hurdling debut.
Victor Hewgo 5-1 (11-11) Held up mid-division, headway from 3 out, bumped 2 out, soon led, pressed last and under pressure run-in, held on well towards finish, won at Doncaster 3m hcp hdl 0-120 (4) sft in Nov beating Zakatal (11-6) by 2 1/2l, 8 ran.
Ballinvarrig (IRE) 2-1 (11-4) Held up towards rear on outside, headway 8f out, challenged over 3f out, led over 2f out, clear over 1f out, hung left inside final furlong, headed close home, 2nd of 13, 3/4l behind Squire Trelawney (11-1) at Uttoxeter 2m NH flat (6) sft in Nov.
Coquet Head 4-5 (12-4) Chsd ldng pr; eff app last; nt pcd to chall, 2nd of 3, 2 1/2l behind Tommysteel (12-7) at Alnwick 3m ptp gs in Feb.
Deportation 100-1 (11-2) Held up towards rear, pushed along before 4 out, weakened before 3 out, 8th of 13, 33l behind African Gold (11-12) at Doncaster 2m 3f NH nov hdl (4-7yo) (4) sft in Feb.
Firth Of The Clyde 7-2 (11-3) Mid-division, headway before 3 out, went 3rd before 2 out, ridden before last, kept on to take 2nd run-in, 2nd of 11, 17l behind Broadway Buffalo (11-3) at Newcastle 2m NH mdn hdl (4) hvy in Feb.
Indian Castle (IRE) 7-2 (11-4) Chased leaders, reminders 4f out, chased winner over 1f out, no impression, 2nd of 14, 23l behind Red Sherlock (10-7) at Towcester 2m NH flat (6) hvy in Jan.
Rocking Blues (FR) 7-2 (10-12) Chased leaders, weakened before last, 10th of 11, well behind Morning Royalty (11-5) at Carlisle 2m 1f nh nov hdl (4) hvy in Dec.
Stagecoach Harry Sir Harry Lewis gelding out of Linwood.
Swingbridge (IRE) 9-2 (11-4) Chased leaders, ridden and lost place inside final mile, plugged on again final 2f, went modest 5th final furlong, 5th of 11, 17l behind Swatow Typhoon (11-4) at Ayr 2m NH flat (6) sft in Jan.
Teo Vivo (FR) 5-1 (11-5) Tracked leaders and keen, ridden and weakened final furlong, 8th of 13, 10l behind Alphabetical Order (11-12) at Musselburgh 2m NH flat (5) sft in Jan.
Mr Opulence 20-1 (10-7) In rear, pushed along before 8th, weakened before 4 out, tailed off before 3 out, last of 5, 49l behind Dreams Of Milan (11-10) at Ayr 2m 5f nh nov hdl (4) sft in Feb.