This looks an open race but the trip will surely prove too short for Up To The Mark while Ainm Spartacus and Priors Gold haven't shown enough on the Flat lately to suggest they'll get involved. A 5lb rise in the weights may have scuppered Della Sun's hopes of following up his Uttoxeter win and Diamond's Return may need a bit more leniency from the handicapper before getting his head back in front but Taaresh seems to be working his way back to full fitness and makes more appeal than the returning Watt Broderick. ORTHODOX LAD was placed over course and distance before winning by 10 lengths here last month. He could easily go in again now he's got his head in front.
Ainm Spartacus (IRE) 14-1 (11-3) Chased leaders, 3rd halfway, ridden in 5th 4 out, soon no extra and weakened, 12th of 14, well behind Imperial Shabra (10-5) at Bellewstown 2m 4f hcp hdl 8Evens23 gf in Jul.
Priors Gold 4-6fav (11-1) Never travelled in last pair, hit 2nd, not fluent next, reminders and struggling after 5th, tailed off, 5th of 7, well behind Molaise Lad (10-5) at Fakenham 2m sell hdl (5) sft in Mar.
Della Sun (FR) 7-1 (10-7) Held up in 5th, chased leading pair before 3 out, went 2nd next, every chance when not fluent last, ridden to lead narrowly flat, just held on, won at Uttoxeter 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-120 (4) gd in Jul beating Don't Be Late (11-10) by hd, 6 ran.
Diamond's Return (IRE) 13-2 (11-12) Held up in rear, headway when not much room 3 out, no impression, 9th of 11, 27l behind Thoresby (11-3) at Towcester 2m 3f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) gd in May.
Up To The Mark 20-1 (10-12) Raced wide, led, mistake 7th, headed before 3 out, chased winner from 2 out, no impression, stayed on same pace, 2nd of 5, 5l behind Another Hero (11-2) at Worcester 2m 4f nh nov hdl (4) gd in Jul.
Orthodox Lad 5-6fav (11-0) Chased leaders, led 3 out, clear last, easily, won at Worcester 2m mdn hdl (5) gd in Jul beating Hallings Comet (10-12) by 10l, 14 ran.
Taaresh (IRE) 20-1 (10-12) Held up behind, headway before 2 out, ridden before last, kept on run-in, 3rd of 7, 6l behind Cut The Cards (12-1) at Southwell 2m hcp hdl 0-115 (4) sft in Jul.
Watt Broderick (IRE) 28-1 (10-7) Chased leaders, pushed along and outpaced 4 out, went distant 3rd after next, no chance with leading duo, tailed off, 3rd of 5, well behind L'unique (10-12) at Kempton 2m 4yo hdl (4) sft in Jan.