A fascinating stayers hurdle with a few recent winners in the race and a case of sorts that could be argued for at least half the field.
IN SUMMARY: Wyfield Rose has won three of her last four starts since front running but an eleven pound rise for a 3/4 length win appears harsh on the bare face of it and that may stop her. Ethelwyn is consistent but this step up in trip on a stiff track is going to ask her a severe stamina question and she may struggle to reverse Cartmel form with COWSLIP who is still well treated on her very best form. This track will suit her dour stamina and she can follow up that Cartmel triumph.
1 Urtheoneiwant – Any horse that Gordon Elliott sends to the UK automatically is worthy of a second look in the betting. This mare has just a single win from 30 races under rules but arguably her two best efforts came over 3 miles so despite her moderate record she could have an each way squeak.
2 Kamool NR – A Preview Tip winner last time out when winning at Southwell. He has caught the eye when hampered at Market Rasen the time before when staying on late and the distance he put between himself and the 2nd on the run-in last time would suggest that this stiffer track is going to play right to his strengths.
3 Filbert – Long time regressive chaser for Phillip Hobbs, he has yet to get anywhere close to his old level of form now with Sophie Leech. He has looked a blatant non stayer in the past so despite being well treated, he is hard to support.
4 Cowslip – Appreciates a proper test of stamina and bounced right back to form last time when taking advantage of a lenient mark at Cartmel. He is still 3lbs below a mark she was placed off at Aintree in June 2015 so if in the same mood again, there is every chance that she is going to notch up another success.
5 Ethelwyn – 2nd to Cowslip last time when keeping on all the way to the line at her first attempt at further than 2m4f. She may yet get this longer trip although she does have her stamina to prove on such a stiff track and Cowslip possibly had more up her sleeve last time given that she had chased such a hard early pace.
6 Lowcarr Motion – Has looked a hard ride on occasions in the past and although the first time cheekpieces produced a better performance two starts ago at Uttoxeter, he was under pressure in them a long way out last time when pulled up at Market Rasen having been sent off favourite.
7 Wyfield Rose – Has shaped for a long time that she had more ability than she was showing on the track and with 3 wins in her last 4 starts since front running, connections appear to have found the key to her. This demands another step up from an 11 pound higher mark than last time but she would be dangerous with a soft lead.
8 Down Time – Hasn’t won over hurdles since June 2014 but is well enough treated on his two latest chase wins. His latest form has been well below his best however and he will need to produce more to triumph here despite the slipping mark.