Ardlui continues to creep up the weights despite having won only a maiden on the Flat, though he's suited by both trip and ground today while Bilidn is now 9lb higher than when winning at Nottingham in July. Winning hurdlers Zakatal and Lieutenant Miller can be given a chance, especially the latter after he won at Pontefract last month on his debut on the Flat, and today's ground may be a problem for the hat-trick-chasing Mafeteng. KLEITOMACHOS beat Hawridge Star at Newbury in July, his second win from only three starts this year, and he gets the nod to show further improvement in what looks an open race.
Ardlui (IRE) 7-2fav (9-9) Held up mid-division, pushed along over 6f out, headway over 3f out, chased winner over 1f out, kept on towards finish, 2nd of 11, 1l behind Red Orator (8-4) at Ascot 2m hcp 0-95 (3) sft in Oct.
Nafaath (IRE) 40-1 (8-5) Tracked leaders on inside, effort 3f out, kept on same pace, weakened 1f out, 11th of 34, 26l behind Aaim To Prosper (9-10) at Newmarket 2m 2f hcp (2) gs in Oct.
Bilidn 6-1 (9-4) Held up in rear, headway on outside 3f out, driven 2f out, never reached leaders and weakened over 1f out, 5th of 7, 9l behind Montaser (8-3) at Ascot 2m hcp 0-100 (2) fm in Jul.
Ocean's Minstrel 8-1 (9-10) Always towards rear, weakened over 2f out, soon eased, last of 11, well behind Red Orator (8-4) at Ascot 2m hcp 0-95 (3) sft in Oct.
Dark Ranger 66-1 (8-1) Towards rear, steady headway over 4f out, ridden to chase leaders 2f out, kept on same pace under pressure, no impression final furlong, 8th of 34, 16l behind Aaim To Prosper (9-10) at Newmarket 2m 2f hcp (2) gs in Oct.
Kleitomachos (IRE) 15-2 (9-4) Held up in touch, took keen hold, headway over 3f out, led over 2f out, hung left over 1f out, held on well, won at Newbury 2m hcp 0-80 (4) hvy in Jul beating Hawridge Star (9-0) by 1 1/2l, 8 ran.
Zakatal 9-1 (9-8) Dwelt in touch in rear, headway 3f out, ridden and soon chased winner, kept on one pace, 2nd of 5, 7l behind Yours Ever (8-10) at Haydock 2m hcp (4) hvy in Oct.
Sohar 50-1 (9-3) Always towards rear, behind and eased final furlong, 10th of 14, 27l behind Gallipot (8-9) at Newmarket 1m 4f fll lst stks (1) gd in Sep.
Lieutenant Miller 11-1 (9-3) In rear, headway to track leaders 4f out, ridden to challenge and every chance from over 1f out, led post, won at Pontefract 2m 2f cond Stakes (3) gs in Oct beating Zuider Zee (9-3) by shd, 6 ran.
Hawridge Star (IRE) 10-1 (9-5) Held up in rear, some headway when not clear run 3f out, well held over 1f out, 6th of 10, 18l behind Mashaari (9-2) at York 2m 2f hcp 0-85 (4) sft in Oct.
Mafeteng 15-2 (8-9) Went left start, held up, good headway on bit over 3f out, led over 1f out, ridden and ran on, won at York 2m hcp 0-85 (4) gf in Sep beating Up Ten Down Two (7-12) by 2l, 10 ran.
Samsons Son 11-1 (8-13) Behind, struggling 5f out, soon ridden, headway under pressure on outside over 2f out, stayed on to take 3rd towards finish, no impression, 3rd of 11, 3 1/2l behind Phase Shift (8-10) at Catterick 1m 4f clm stks (6) sft in Oct.
Epsom Salts 66-1 (8-2) Dwelt held up, headway to chase leaders, 6f out, ridden and weakened over 1f out, 10th of 18, 28l behind Domination (8-9) at Newmarket 2m 2f hcp 105 (2) gf in Sep.
Miss Topsy Turvy (IRE) 8-1 (9-11) Held up towards rear, driven and some headway 3f out, weakened over 2f out, never in contention, 11th of 13, 33l behind Presto Volante (9-5) at Salisbury 1m 6f hcp 0-75 (5) sft in Oct.
Toptempo 10-3 (8-12) Tracked leaders, ridden to chase leader 3f out, chance over 1f out, kept on same pace, 3rd of 10, 5l behind Infinitum (8-12) at Southwell 1m 4f mdn stks (5) fbs in Oct.
Somemothersdohavem 16-1 (9-7) Slowly away, behind, headway over 3f out, led briefly over 2f out, soon headed, rallied over 1f out, weakened close home, 4th of 9, 6l behind Petaluma (9-4) at Bath 2m 1f 3yo hcp 0-75 (5) sft in Oct.