IN SUMMARY: Ambre De Marais is three from three since returning from a huge absence under rules but preference is for GOAL. A scorer over course and distance back in January, he was hampered very early on when last seen but did well to plug into seventh. He’s dropped another two pounds in the handicap and shouldn’t be for catching with Brodie Hampson claiming a further five pounds.
1 TAKE A BREAK – Lost his way badly since a win at Hexham in September, well beaten on his last three runs for Nigel Hawke. He returns from two dismal runs over fences and has far too much to prove today.
2 CABERNET D’ALENE – Won two starts ago at Newton Abbot, far from disgraced off today’s mark when sixth at Taunton earlier this month. That trip stretched him and he’ll be much happier at this distance with the ground as it is. Key player with Lizzie Kelly claiming three pounds.
3 AMBRE DE MARIAS – Arrives here on a four-timer after winning all three of her starts since returning from a near two year absence. She didn’t have much in hand when ridden clear at Worcester in September and a six pounds rise demands more. Each way contender but looks a shade vulnerable now.
4 MONDAY CLUB – Only four runs over hurdles for this four year old who was only rated 55 on the flat for Dominic Ffrench Davis.His form over hurdles is modest despite placing once and others are readily preferred here.
5 MIGHTY MISSILE – Won at Wincanton back in April off two pounds higher but he lost his way towards the end of the summer and has been slammed in two flat runs since. That leaves him with plenty to prove despite this handy mark and he can only be watched.
6 I’LL BE YOUR CLOWN – Gained his only hurdling victory when taking a very poor Market Rasen Novices’ Hurdle at odds of 1/7. He’s been well beaten in four runs since, pulled up at Warwick two weeks ago. Hard to make a case for him.
7 BERRY DE CARJAC – Nowhere near his best on his last three runs, falling at this venue when last seen at the first hurdle. That can’t have done his confidence any good and off his current mark he couldn’t be recommended.
8 GOAL – Course and distance winner for Tracey Watkins who lost his chance when hampered early on over course and distance on his latest start. He kept on well in spite of it and off two pounds lower, he looks sure to go close with Brodie Hampson claiming five pounds.
9 FAHEEM – Only three runs over hurdles thus far but he’s shown very limited promise in those runs, beaten out of sight at Newbury when last seen. He was well behind some very modest performers on that occasion and it’s impossible to make a case for him.
10 SERVEONTIME – Second on his last two runs for Helen Nelmes, snatching that position on the line over course and distance when last seen. He’s up another two pounds a result but he’s going the right way and he shouldn’t be far away.