Goodlukin Lucy won here in December and will be a popular choice with Simon Walker taking over the reins while Opus has been threatening to score and went close for today's rider at Lingfield earlier. Bethan is another with claims after finishing second over 1m4f here on her latest start and Alborz posted a better effort when last seen at this course in January. HONEST STRIKE had no chance at the weights up against Stand Guard last time but he'd earlier finished runner-up over track and trip in one of these events under Freddie Mitchell and he gets the nod to come good today.
Alborz (IRE) 9-2 (9-7) Led 1f, tracked leader until 8f out, remained handy, pushed along 3f out, one pace when hampered well over 1f out, rallied under pressure inside final furlong, 5th of 6, 2l behind Spanish Plume (9-2) at Wolverhampton 1m 4f hcp 0-65 (6) pol.
Honest Strike (USA) 3-1 (8-13) Tracked winner, ridden over 2f out, soon beaten, last of 2, 14l behind Stand Guard (9-5) at Southwell 1m 4f sell stks (6) fbs.
Ballyheigue (IRE) 3-1 (9-3) Driven to lead, reminder after 3f out, joined 6f out, headed over 3f out, no chance with front pair 2f out, lost moderate 3rd post, 4th of 5, 16l behind A Little Bit Dusty (9-3) at Lingfield 1m 4f sell stks (6) pol in Jan.
Bethan 5-1 (9-7) Led early, chased leader until 4f out, chased leaders, went 2nd again 2f out, ridden to lead over 1f out, stayed on, headed post, 2nd of 6, shd behind Aureate (8-4) at Southwell 1m 4f app hcp 0-60 (6) fbs.
Monzino (USA) 16-1 (9-0) Slowly away, raced wide, ridden along in rear, outpaced 4f out, driven and headway when switched left over 1f out, kept on final furlong, nearest finish, 6th of 12, 9l behind On The Cusp (9-6) at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-60 (6) fbs.
Opus (IRE) 7-2fav (9-1) In touch, ridden over 4f out, chased winner over 3f out, driven to challenge over 1f out, one pace and hung right inside final furlong, 2nd of 12, 1l behind On The Cusp (9-6) at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-60 (6) fbs.
Goodlukin Lucy 3-1 (9-2) Driven to chase leaders, reminders over 5f out, soon beaten, 6th of 8, 13l behind Grandad Mac (9-3) at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-60 (6) fbs in Jan.
Joyful Motive 33-1 (8-10) Chased leaders, pushed along halfway, weakened over 3 fout, soon tailed off, 8th of 12, well behind Toughness Danon (9-9) at Catterick 2m hcp 0-70 (5) hvy in Oct.