ST IGNATIUS arrives in great heart and the form book points to Alan Bailey's charge landing a hat-trick. He had Back Burner well behind when scoring over track and trip last time and the latter had earlier finished second to Magika at Wolverhampton when Mica Mika was tailed off. Returntobrecongill sluiced up here recently but has been raised 12lb for his trouble while Masterful Act's recent course win came over 2m. Layl has the form on Polytrack to figure if taking to the surface.
Masterful Act (USA) 8-1 (9-13) Led and set decent pace, pushed along and headed over 3f out, weakened rapidly, tailed off, last of 8, well behind Arch Villain (9-13) at Kempton 2m hcp (2) pol in Nov.
Back Burner (IRE) 5-1 (9-7) Held up in rear but in touch, headway over 3f out, soon chasing leaders, never able to challenge, 4th of 7, 4 1/2l behind St Ignatius (9-3) at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-85 (4) fbs in Dec.
Layl (USA) 16-1 (8-12) Chased leaders, led entering final 2f, ridden and headed over 1f out, weakened inside final furlong, 7th of 12, 7l behind I'm Fraam Govan (9-3) at Kempton 1m 3f hcp (2) pol in Dec.
Mica Mika (IRE) 8-1 (9-3) Raced wide always in rear, last of 7, 26l behind Magika (8-10) at Wolverhampton 1m 4f hcp 0-85 (4) pol in Dec.
St Ignatius 7-1 (9-3) In touch, hard driven over 4f out, headway over 1f out, stayed on strongly to lead close home, won at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-85 (4) fbs in Dec beating Honoured (9-3) by nk, 7 ran.
Magika 6-4fav (8-10) Tracked leader until 5f out, tracked leader again over 3f out, led 2f out, edged left inside final furlong, readily, won at Wolverhampton 1m 4f hcp 0-85 (4) pol in Dec beating Back Burner (9-6) by 1 1/2l, 7 ran.
Returntobrecongill 4-7fav (9-5) Made all, shaken up over 2f out, soon clear, unchallenged, won at Southwell 1m 3f 3yo hcp 0-70 (5) fbs in Dec beating Tight Knit (9-2) by 19l, 5 ran.