Spice Hill has finished second twice over hurdles lately but showed very little over fences in Ireland for his previous yard and may be best watched here at the likely odds. CRACK AT DAWN is hard to predict nowadays but knows where the winning post is and would go very close with a repeat of his second at Stratford two runs ago. Pur De Sivola, Brousse En Feux and Mr Goofy are all returning from a lengthy absence and none of the others have suggested a first victory over fences is imminent.
Pur De Sivola (FR) 16-1 (9-7) Raced wide, took keen hold, held up, good headway to chase leading pair 10th, slow and ridden 13th, soon lost place and behind, left poor 4th 4 out, tailed off and pulled up before 2 out, in a race won by Rateable Value (10-1) at Wincanton 3m 1f hcp chs 0-125 (3) hvy in May '12, 6 ran.
Brousse En Feux (FR) 16-1 (11-12) Held up in rear, struggling in 8th after 9th, modest 5th 4 out, went left next, left poor 4th 2 out, soon dropped to 5th, tailed off, 5th of 9, well behind Sulpius (11-1) at Fontwell 2m 4f hcp chs 0-95 (5) sft in Dec.
Crack At Dawn (IRE) 18-1 (10-13) Held up in rear, headway approaching 7th, ridden 13th, mistake and weakened 4 out, 9th of 11, well behind Five Out Of Five (11-4) at Stratford 2m 7f hcp chs 0-95 (5) gf.
Mr Goofy (IRE) 4-1fav (10-10) Tracked leader, went 2nd before 8th, weakened 4 out, 6th of 9, 31l behind Tregaro (10-7) at Sedgefield 2m 4f hcp chs 0-105 (4) gf in Sep.
Spice Hill (IRE) 6-4fav (11-0) Led, not fluent 6th, ridden and headed 2 out, soon beaten, 2nd of 7, 19l behind Royal Peak (10-6) at Stratford 2m 6f nov hcp hdl 0-100 (5) gd.
Highland River 13-2 (10-0) Tracked leaders, not fluent 6th or 7th, ridden after 4 out, not fluent and well beaten 3 out, last of 4, 21l behind Wester Ross (11-9) at Bangor 2m 1f hcp chs 0-115 (4) gd.
Mac Beattie 8-1 (10-11) Chased leaders, ridden 4 out, weakened after 2 out, 6th of 11, 30l behind Rudigreen (11-7) at Stratford 2m 4f hcp 0-100 (5) gf.
Grand Fella (IRE) 100-1 (10-0) Held up towards rear, effort after 9th, weakened before 4 out, 9th of 12, well behind Mount Welcome (10-11) at Worcester 2m hcp chs 0-100 (5) gd in Apr.