A huge field and the finding of the winner will no doubt be well-rewarding; from a shortlist of Thebes, Steelcut, Fullandby and OLDJOESAID, it is the last-named who is nominated. Henry Candy's gelding has been kept in the main to ground with some cut in but his debut win came on quick ground at Sandown and he has run well on it since. He has four wins to his name, and is ideally suited by a strong pace as he travels well and he also has the ability to quicken well; he looks sure to get a strong tempo here as he is drawn near several quick horses. Thebes is one of these, and Mark Johnston's gelding has been running well in defeat recently, comments that also apply to old-timer Mutamared, Blue Jack and Orpsie Boy. Steelcut won well at Thirsk a couple of weeks back, whilst Carleton was an eye-catcher at Bath on his recent comeback and he looks the sort to run well from the bottom of the weights. Shifting Star is interesting returning from a winter break as he has run well when fresh before, comments that also apply to Damika and Wise Melody. Evens And Odds, course and distance winners Fantasy Explorer, Prohibit, Exclamation and Fullandby, and also the returning Countdown (if the rain comes) are all of interest, along with the good front-runner Spanish Bounty. Such a tough race to pick apart but we are left with Oldjoesaid.
Prohibit 8-1 (9-4) Keen, held up mid-division, effort under strong pressure when carried head high over 1f out, one pace final furlong, 6th of 12, 2 1/4l behind Tax Free (9-4) at Newmarket 6f Listed stks (1) gf in Apr.
Oldjoesaid 3-1fav (8-13) Took keen hold, held up in touch, shaken up over 1f out, kept on inside final furlong, 6th of 13, 4l behind Chief Editor (9-4) at Newbury 5f hcp (2) gs in Apr.
Fullandby (IRE) 10-1 (8-11) Slowly into stride, held up, pushed along 2f out, driven and stayed on under pressure inside final furlong, 3rd of 13, 3/4l behind Chief Editor (9-4) at Newbury 5f hcp (2) gs in Apr.
Exclamation 16-1 (9-4) Chased leaders, ridden over 2f out, stayed on final furlong, 4th of 12, 1 3/4l behind Tax Free (9-4) at Newmarket 6f Listed stks (1) gf in Apr.
Damika (IRE) 9-1 (9-6) Raced far side, mid-division, pushed along 3f out, headway under pressure over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 11th of 17, 7l behind Plum Pudding (9-6) at Newmarket 7f hcap (2) gd in Oct.
Orpsie Boy (IRE) 50-1 (9-4) In rear, pushed along halfway, headway approaching final furlong, no impression final 100 yards, 5th of 12, 2 1/4l behind Tax Free (9-4) at Newmarket 6f Listed stks (1) gf in Apr.
Shifting Star (IRE) 8-1 (9-2) Held up, headway over 1f out, stayed on well final furlong, 3rd of 19, 2 1/4l behind Skhilling Spirit (8-7) at Doncaster 6f hcap (2) gd in Oct.
Spanish Bounty 25-1 (9-4) Tracked leader, ridden and effort 2f out, no extra over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 6th of 10, 6l behind Mullein (9-0) at Kempton 6f hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Apr.
Mac Gille Eoin 40-1 (9-4) Keen, chased leading pair to over 1f out, 10th of 12, 5l behind Tax Free (9-4) at Newmarket 6f Listed stks (1) gf in Apr.
Baby Strange 28-1 (9-2) Steadied start, held up towards rear, headway over 1f out, pressed leaders and every chance entering final furlong, kept on same pace, lost 3rd final strides, 4th of 10, 3l behind Mullein (9-0) at Kempton 6f hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Apr.
Thebes 3-1fav (8-12) Chased leaders, chased winner over 2f out until weakened towards finish, 3rd of 9, 1 1/4l behind Tamagin (9-6) at Newcastle 6f hcp 0-105 (2) gf in Apr.
Biniou (IRE) 15-2 (8-8) Dwelt, soon mid-division, ridden 2f out, kept on final furlong, not pace to challenge, 5th of 8, 2 1/4l behind Lone Wolfe (8-0) at Great Leighs 6f hcp (2) pol in Dec.
Evens And Odds (IRE) 14-1 (8-10) Towards rear stands side group, headway to lead 2f out, stayed on well no chance with far side group, 3rd of 20, 5l behind Palace Moon (8-8) at Doncaster 6f hcp 0-100 (2) gd in Mar.
Wise Melody 4-1fav (9-1) In touch, ridden and every chance 1f out, soon one pace, 2nd of 12, 2 1/4l behind Film Maker (9-0) at Great Leighs 6f 3yo hcp (3) pol in Aug.
Fantasy Explorer 9-1 (8-10) Prominent, ridden over 2f out, one-paced until weakened inside final furlong, 7th of 9, 8l behind Advanced (9-4) at Pontefract 6f hcp 0-100 (2) fm in Apr.
Mutamared (USA) 5-1 (8-9) Tracked leaders on inside, not clear run and short of room approaching final furlong, snatched up, ran on well to take 3rd final strides, 3rd of 10, 2 3/4l behind Mullein (9-0) at Kempton 6f hcp 0-95 (3) pol in Apr.
My Gacho (IRE) 12-1 (8-13) Towards rear and keen, ridden over 2f out, soon weakened, last of 10, 10l behind Quest For Success (9-1) at Thirsk 7f hcp 0-90 (3) fm in Apr.
Countdown 16-1 (8-9) Tracked leaders to halfway, 7th of 10, 8l behind Commander Cave (9-5) at Kempton 1m hcp (2) pol in Nov.
Steelcut 7-4fav (8-12) Held up behind leaders, switched left over 1f out, led entering final furlong, ran on, won at Thirsk 5f hcp 0-80 (4) gf in Apr beating Rasaman (8-13) by 2l, 8 ran.
Carleton 12-1 (9-4) Mid-division, ridden over 1f out, one pace, 5th of 12, 4 1/2l behind Westwood (8-5) at Windsor 6f hcp 0-80 (4) gd in Apr.
Blue Jack 10-3fav (8-10) Held up, headway 2f out, led approaching final furlong, ridden and headed well inside, 2nd of 9, hd behind Dazed And Amazed (8-13) at Bath 6f hcp 0-85 (4) gf in Apr.