13:05 Kelso Sun 9 December 2018
Has reverted to chasing this season after spending the 2017/18 campaign over hurdles; debatable whether or not he stays this marathon trip; weakened when finishing 10L fifth to Rock The Kasbah in the Grade 3 Bet Victor Chase (Cheltenham) latest.
Stayed on strongly when beating Knockanrawley by 4L in the 2017 Eider Chase (4m); game runner-up in the Midlands Grand National a few weeks later but well below-par since; runner-up on both previous visits to Kelso (in novice hurdles).
Useful hurdler who seemingly lacks a change of gear over fences (stays 3m in heavy ground); well worth trying over a more extreme trip, but fair to acknowledge that others are possibly better treated; 1-1 at Kelso (over hurdles).
Dour stayer who took the 2018 Devon National (Exeter) by 2L in February (3m6f, soft) and has acquitted himself creditably in stronger races since; caught out by the much discussed Haydock fences on his seasonal reappearance.
Stablemate of Progress Drive; 2-3 at Kelso previously and would've won the Edinburgh National at Musselburgh (4m1f, soft) in February but for swerving left and unseating his rider at the final fence; competes wearing first time cheekpieces.
4-18 over fences and generally most effective on a sound surface (good); placed on a couple of recent starts without looking the most straightforward of horses; stamina to prove definitively (unseated rider in the 3m5f Durham National latest).
Talented hurdler once upon a time, runner-up to Thousand Stars in a 3m Grade 1 at Auteuil in November 2015; hasn't quite got his act together over fences despite competing in races such as the Kim Muir and the Cross Country Chase (Cheltenham).
Stays well in soft ground (3m5f winner at Warwick in March 2017); 5-21 over fences, but his best effort came in defeat to Baywing (beaten 4L) in the Eider Chase in February; 2lb higher wearing first time blinkers; fit from a hurdles spin.
Has mixed hurdling with chasing since winning the Edinburgh National (4m1f) at Musselburgh in February 2017; handily weighted off a 2lb lower mark and has drying conditions in his favour; low-key comeback run in the 3m1f Badger Ales Trophy.
11lb higher than when a decisive winner at Haydock (3m5f, soft) in March, but there's no denying that he's stamina laden and open to further improvement after just eight starts over fences; possible player if handling this sharper track.
Veteran and hugely emotional winner of this race in 2016 (good to soft); steadily sliding back to a more competitive mark and a recent run at Carlisle can't have done him any harm whatsoever; will still probably find a few stronger today.
Former French racer who has been raced sparingly in recent times; all the way winner in truly desperate conditions at Newcastle (3m) in April; 9lb higher at a track where his overall record is 21P (2m5f-2m7f+); stamina unproven.
Veteran who seemingly isn't the force of old these days (7-39 over fences) but has fallen sharply down the weights accordingly; solid around Kelso - finished 5L second to Harry The Viking in this race in 2016 (now 15lb lower).
At her very best at this track over hurdles (form figures here since late 2015; 161132) and finally found her groove over fences when hacking up at Hexham (4m, soft) last month; discount at your peril despite the 10lb higher mark.
3lb higher than when gamely fending off Chidswell here in January (3m, soft); worth a go over further, but the suspicion is that he'll find this much stronger field overly taxing.
Without a win since April 2017 this admirable front-running veteran of such stamina sapping races (2015 North Yorkshire National winner, 2013 & 2014 Borders National runner-up) sadly appears to be on the decline; NR at Hexham last month (soft).
Last Year's Winner
Calett Mad (10/3), West Of The Edge (13/2), Total Assets (7/1), Zerachiel (8/1), Looking Well (8/1), Progress Drive (10/1), Aubusson (12/1), Dancing Shadow (14/1), Harry The Viking (16/1), Carrigdhoun (16/1), Dawson City (20/1), Ascot De Bruyere (20/1), Mysteree (22/1), Easy Street (28/1), Bright Prospect (33/1), Scotswell (66/1)
- West Of The Edge
- Total Assets
- Dawson City
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