Pat Haslam is mob handed in this race but DAZZLING BEGUM may be the one to upset Hi Dancer and Scutch Mill. The visor is tried on Dazzling Begum for the first time and while she has proved disappointing, she has shaped with a modicum of promise on more than one or two occasions and it is to be hoped that the headgear works the oracle. Hi Dancer is a useful performer over timber. He dotted up under an amateur pilot and is unpenalised for that wide margin success. Scutch Mill is another for whom timber brings out the best. That said, he has had plenty of paydays on the flat in the past and the market is watched. Dontpaytheferryman has been busy over the last six weeks so racefitness should not be an issue. Akash was once useful for John Oxx but will have it to do on a return from absence. Desert Hawk is workmanlike though ordinary. George Baker has done well with castoffs so don't be surprised to see money around for Jamaahir. The ex-John Dunlop runner has had a long absence to overcome but that shouldn't put punters off. Dazzling Begum is possibly entering the last chance saloon with her supporters but a final drink can yield the performance that we have been waiting for.
Hi Dancer 16-1 (10-6) Held up, headway over 4f, ridden to lead over 2f, soon clear, comfortably, won at Southwell 2m amt hcp (6) fbs beating Zaffeu (11-7) by 11l, 14 ran.
Slew Charm (FR) 8-1 (9-9) In touch, ridden over 3f out, one pace and no impression final 2f, 9th of 14, 6l behind Spritza (9-4) at Kempton 1m 4f hcap (6) pol in Sept '07.
Akash (IRE) 33-1 (8-12) Soon towards rear, reminders 9f out, soon beaten, 9th of 12, 33l behind Shape Up (8-12) at Southwell 1m 3f hcp 0-65 (6) fbs in Mar '07.
Scutch Mill (IRE) 7-1 (8-7) Held up, headway on inner over 1f out, led and edged left inside final furlong, soon headed, kept on same pace, 2nd of 13, 2l behind Giddywell (8-9) at W'hampton 1m 1f hcp 0-50 (6) std.
Desert Hawk 16-1 (8-13) Held up in rear, ridden 3f out, never dangerous, 7th of 11, 7l behind Blockley (9-2) at W'hampton 1m 4f hcp (6) pol.
Semi Detached (IRE) 16-1 (8-12) Steadied towards rear, headway 3f out, ridden and one pace final furlong, 5th of 11, 3 1/2l behind Little Richard (9-4) at W'hampton 1m 4f hcp 0-60 (6) pol in Dec.
Jamaahir (USA) 50-1 (9-3) Led and pulled early, headed well over 2f out, weakened final furlong, last of 11, 25l behind Colwyn Bay (9-9) at Salisbury 1m 6f hcp 0-70 (5) gs in Aug '07.
Bourbon Highball (IRE) 100-1 (9-0) Chased leaders to halfway, 8th of 11, 24l behind Clear Sailing (9-1) at Southwell 1m sll (6) fbs in Dec.
Safin (GER) 40-1 (9-0) Held up behind leaders, ridden over 3f out, weakened over 1f out, 9th of 10, 15l behind Alonso de Guzman (8-11) at W'hampton 1m 4f hcp 0-65 (6) pol in Nov '07.
Dontpaytheferryman (USA) 4-1 (9-3) In touch, ridden 2f out, kept on to take 2nd inside final furlong, no chance with winner, 2nd of 6, 4 1/2l behind American Spin (9-6) at Kempton 1m 3f mdn auc (6) pol.
Dazzling Begum 9-2 (8-13) Held up towards rear, headway 4f out, driven over 1f out, kept on same pace final furlong, 2nd of 11, 3 1/2l behind Stravita (9-2) at Southwell 1m 4f hcp 0-60 (6) fbs in Dec.
Sceilin (IRE) 16-1 (8-7) Tracked leader, ridden and every chance over 2f out, weakened over 1f out, 8th of 9, 5l behind Formidable Guest (8-10) at Lingfield 1m 2f hcp 0-65 (6) pol in Dec.