Tote Win: £10.30 Tote Place: £3.20,1.60,2.10
Straight Forecast: £21.50 Exacta: £31.40 Trifecta: £237.50 Swingers: 1&2:6.90 2&3:5.10 1&3:11.40
Jackpot: £76,491.55 carried forward to Aintree, 14th Apr
Placepot: £33.30, Pool: £454402.7, 9946.44 winning tickets
Quadpot: £22.10, Pool: £18309.83, 610.59 winning tickets
Robert Thornton's perseverance paid off handsomely here with a win on the robust LOVCEN who really ground out a victory against a horse with plenty of class. Alan King has had several good quality grinding staying novices and he fits the bill, as he was one of the first off the bridle but responded well to nearly a mile of driving from his jockey to assert after the final flight. He's not a star, but he's getting better with every run and it would be no surprise to see him do well in staying novice chases next year if he takes on the bigger obstacles. Otherwise it's the unenviable task of going up against Big Buck's and he's pretty much impossible to grind down. Runner-up Fingal Bay emerges with plenty of credit, as the first two were well clear and it may turn out that the fall of Golden Call, at an early stage, affected him more than just having to swerve to avoid a collision. Philip Hobbs' ace had to miss Cheltenham due to a setback but travelled with purpose here, and for such a big horse, he really does hurdle well. He was committed for home quite early turning in but perhaps a lack of match fitness started to tell in the final 200 yards; he certainly seemed to stay the longer trip ok, but was perhaps in front for long enough. He'll still be a force to be reckoned with wherever he goes next, with his trainer doing well at Punchestown in the past, but it might not be a bad idea to put him away for the year and give him a bit more time. Third home, and beaten over 10 lengths, was Cotton Mill who showed no signs of the waywardness which had caused him to run out at Cheltenham last month. He was settled behind the leaders, but after the fall of Donald McCain's runner, had to help cut out the running. That wasn't ideal, but he still held every chance turning for home and it was apparent that he would be one to chase the favourite. Whilst Gullinbursti faded, he moved alongside the now leading Fingal Bay but when let down he didn't find the same finish as the first two home. Ipsos Du Berlais doesn't look the easiest of rides but he responded well to some rather serious urging from his rider and was still trying his best close home. In fifth was Hawkes Point who seemed to be outpaced at a crucial stage before plugging on again under a considerate ride, and he finished his race better than Tap Night who was clinging onto the leaders coat-tails turning for home but ran out of puff late on. He ran a cracker though and helps give the form a solid look. Ballyrock disappointed, as one of several pulled up, but he seemed to get a kick from the faller, whilst Poole Master tried to mix it with the big boys down the far side but was a beaten horse as a result when taking a late tumble. Forgotten Gold gets a mention as he looks a nice horse for novice chases next year.