Bygones Sovereign is 10lb higher than when second over course and distance in November but has improved since and wasn't beaten far in a competitive Pertemps qualifier at Warwick last time. But Tom Scudamore prefers Ainsi Fideles, who is less exposed and would almost certainly have won at Sedgefield last time had he not fallen. Another novice, Silsol, is slowly getting there and will enjoy the ground but the handicapper may have got to Shantou Magic and Quaddick Lake has become hard to predict. UHLAN BUTE is almost certain to be suited by this step up in trip and he showed plenty of spirit to hold on at Plumpton last time - he could be worth sticking with.
Shantou Magic (IRE) 7-1 (11-7) Led, driven and headed before 2 out, soon no extra in 3rd, weakened to 4th at the last, 4th of 6, 15l behind Captain Cutter (11-7) at Newbury 2m 5f nov hdl Grade 1 (1) hvy in Dec.
Uhlan Bute (FR) 8-11fav (11-11) Tracked leaders, went 2nd before 6th, led before 2 out, joined last, driven and strongly pressed flat, stayed on to assert nearing finish, won at Plumpton 2m nh nov hdl (4) hvy beating Raven's Tower (10-13) by nk, 10 ran.
Quaddick Lake (IRE) 14-1 (11-10) Always behind, 10th of 15, 40l behind Quick Decisson (10-12) at Wincanton 2m hcp hdl 0-130 (3) hvy.
Union Saint (FR) 33-1 (11-8) Held up mid-division, weakened after 3 out, 7th of 15, 26l behind Quick Decisson (10-12) at Wincanton 2m hcp hdl 0-130 (3) hvy.
Bygones Sovereign (IRE) 10-1 (9-7) Led until before 2 out, stayed on same pace, 4th of 12, 5l behind Uncle Jimmy (10-1) at Warwick 3m 1f hcp hdl (2) hvy.
Silsol (GER) 11-10fav (10-9) Jumped right 1st, held up in touch, not fluent 4th, hampered and dropped to last 6th, headway on outside next, close up and ridden 3 out, left chasing winner next, stayed on same pace, no impression flat, 2nd of 7, 3l behind Algernon Pazham (10-9) at Leicester 2m 4f 4yo nov stks (4) gs in Dec.
Alder Mairi (IRE) 16-1 (10-8) Raced wide chasing leaders, led 6th, clear next, headed 3 out, weakened rapidly and pulled up before next, in a race won by Mickie (11-5) at Kempton 3m mrs hcp hdl (2) sft in Dec, 8 ran.
Old Tricks (IRE) 9-1 (11-7) Mid-division, lost place after 5th, ridden before 2 out, soon weakened, 9th of 14, 14l behind Bob Tucker (10-6) at Wincanton 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) hvy.
Minella Special (IRE) 12-1 (11-2) Held up towards rear, steady headway travelling well approaching 3 out, chased leaders 2 out, went 3rd after 2 out, soon ridden, no impression when went right last, no extra in 4th final 100 yards, 4th of 14, 5l behind Kenai Peninsula (11-7) at Kempton 2m 5f hcp hdl 0-130 (3) gs in Apr.
Ainsi Fideles (FR) 11-10fav (11-5) Set slow pace until before 2nd, prominent, led again 5th, 2 lengths ahead when fell 2 out, in a race won by Magic Skyline (10-5) at Sedgefield 2m 1f 3yo hdl (4) sft in Nov, 6 ran.
Veauce De Sivola (FR) 9-4fav (10-11) Held up in touch, in rear when fell 6 out, in a race won by Alderbrook Lad (10-6) at Catterick 2m hcp chs 0-125 (3) hvy, 6 ran.
Bravo Bravo 33-1 (10-11) Led, ridden before last, headed last, kept on and lost 2nd place close home, 3rd of 14, 1l behind Bob Tucker (10-6) at Wincanton 2m 6f hcp hdl 0-125 (3) hvy.
Martial Law (IRE) 9-2 (10-9) Tracked leaders, driven after 4 out, in 3rd and mistake 3 out, soon weakened, 7th of 10, well behind Royal Riviera (10-2) at Ffos Las 3m hcp hdl 0-145 (2) hvy in Jun '12.
Dragon's Den (IRE) 9-1 (10-7) Held up in rear, not always fluent, in touch before 3 out, outpaced by leaders from next, stayed on same pace, never on terms to challenge, 4th of 10, 7l behind Waterunder (11-12) at Exeter 2m 1f hcp hdl 0-135 (3) sft in Nov.