Soldier’s Minute was strong in the betting at this venue in October and he ran right up to his best as he prevailed by half a length, bouncing back to the level that saw him hack up at York in the spring.
He followed that Kempton success up with creditable third-place finishes at Lingfield and Wolverhampton, confirming he is operating at the top of his game, and the return to this venue may suit as he has won two of his three starts here.
Dragon d’Estruval turned in easily his best effort for Nicky Henderson when third at Perth in June, proving better than ever on his return to chasing. He ran to a similar level when fifth at Ascot following a six-month break, doing best of those who raced towards the rear of the field, suggesting that he could be on a fair mark.
He was then unplaced in the void race at Sandown last month, but this is a less competitive event and he looks to have been found a good opportunity. Rolling Dylan is an inconsistent type but he too has dropped to a fair mark and might give the selection the most to do.
Top Boy made the perfect start for Tony Carroll with a pair of wins on turf in the summer, and he ran creditably in pursuit of the hat-trick when fourth at Bath a couple of months later. He produced another good effort when a close-up third in a handicap over this course and distance in October, and he remains with plenty of handicapping scope based on his old form.
His fitness will be the biggest question mark after a three-month break, but he has been successful off higher marks than this in the past and is a big player.
*Prices correct at time of publishing