Redford Road showed plenty in bumpers, winning at Warwick on his second start in that sphere, and he created a good impression on his hurdles debut at Wetherby, jumping well and showing a likeable attitude that will stand him in good stead. This stiffer test of stamina will suit based on how well he stuck to his task at Wetherby, and he is up to defying a penalty. Prince Llywelyn was useful in bumpers and is an interesting recruit to hurdling. He is considered the biggest danger.
Highest Sun has the physique for chasing and instantly bettered his hurdles form when finishing an encouraging third at Newbury on his first start over fences. He faced a stiff task on that occasion, and there was no shame in finishing behind Champ and Dashel Drasher. But he impressed with how well he kept on in the closing stages and looks to be well handicapped on the back of that effort. He needs to brush up on his jumping but should go close if putting in a decent round.
Jubilympics has shaped with promise on both starts since joining Emma Lavelle, finishing placed at Warwick and Exeter, and she gets the vote here. She did well to finish third at Exeter having been caught wide, and she is threatening to come good. The Emma Lavelle yard is in good form and everything looks set for Jubilympics to launch a bold bid.
Cyrname is a serious opponent and has optimum conditions but Altior is an outstanding chaser who is unbeaten in 19 starts over obstacles and can extend his record-breaking run. He has brushed aside all-comers in the two-mile division and, while he has yet to race over this far, the step-up in trip promises to suit based on how strong he is at the finish. Altior is rated 7lbs superior to Cyrname on Timeform’s figures and is expected to prove too good.
If The Cap Fits landed this prize last year and can retain his crown. He had the benefit of race fitness on that occasion but has a good record when fresh so the absence is no concern. He looked better than ever when winning the Ryanair Stayers Hurdle at Aintree on his final start last season and can be relied upon to give his running.
Capeland was an unlucky loser over course and distance last time but is taken to gain compensation. He held every chance approaching the final fence when he was forced through the wing by stablemate Diego du Charmil and was disqualified. The two were well clear at the time, so Capeland looks well treated off the same mark.
Irish point winner Kid Commando looked something out of the ordinary when bolting up on his bumper debut at Fontwell, justifying good support, and a penalty is unlikely to stop him following up. He caught the eye travelling well on the bridle, and he quickened clear on the home turn to win with plenty in hand. He is from a good jumping family and looks to have a very bright future so should not be opposed.