Shadow Cruise was sent off joint favourite for his debut at Chepstow and wasn't beaten far in fourth. He'll know more today while Torgamah Lad was very green on his debut at Hereford in December and has a decent NH pedigree. Jean De Florette is a half-brother to winning chaser Howard's Legacy but we prefer DARK DESIRE. Closely related to the Tizzard's useful hurdler Jumps Road and bumper winner Diligent, he may have more speed than fellow newcomers Split Or Stick and Grapeshot Verse.
Jean De Florette (IRE) Helissio horse out of Ismene.
River Dancing (IRE) 25-1 (10-9) Towards rear, slightly hampered over 9f out, pushed along and one pace in 7th over 3f out, 7th of 14, 20l behind Until Winning (9-11) at Taunton 2m 1f cond NH flat (5) gs in Feb '12.
Split Or Stick (IRE) Zagreb gelding out of Tree Oaks.
Torgamah Lad (IRE) 6-1 (11-0) Held up towards rear, headway 10f out, weakened over 2f out, tailed off, 7th of 15, well behind Wadswick Court (11-0) at Hereford 2m 1f NH flat (6) sft in Dec.
Dark Desire Generous gelding out of Diletia.
Shadow Cruise (IRE) 3-1fav (10-7) Tracked leaders in 4th, ridden over 1f out, stayed on inside final furlong, 4th of 10, 5l behind Anteros (11-5) at Chepstow 2m NH flat (6) hvy in Jan.
Grapeshot Verse Grape Tree Road filly out of Caballe.