The first big jumps meeting of the autumn in Britain reaches its peak at Chepstow on Saturday, and Keith Melrose from the Racing Post picks out the best bets on the card.
While there are still a handful in the Native River Handicap Chase who are likely to be using it as a pipe-opener (last year Cap Du Nord and Kitty's Light made their reappearance in the race), it looks a much stronger renewal than the one Peregrine Run won 12 months ago.
Given he is the flag-bearer for a fledgling yard, you imagine French Paradoxe could have some bigger targets in mind later in the season.
Although such is the form trainer Oliver Signy is in, you would also imagine he will not be short on fitness for this first run back.
In line with his yard as a whole, French Paradoxe's 2022/23 season was all about improvement. He won at Wetherby, fell when set to win at Ffos Las then left a deep impression at Newcastle in January.
He went off 12/1 for the Midlands National on his last start, but that seemed a bit of a culture shock for him. He could not lead and was struggling a long way out.
Back in grade and freshened up, he can resume the same progress that took him into good handicaps last season. He may find himself back in them soon enough, perhaps even in the Welsh National here over Christmas.
Last October, Nothin To Ask created a really good impression when winning his chase debut over this course and distance.
I thought he would go on to achieve a bit more than he did later that season, but there are still reasons to be positive.
He won at Doncaster next time, again jumping well, then came unstuck at Newbury over Christmas.
He looked back in the swing of things here in April, before falling down the back straight. A summer off could be just what he needs to pick up the progressive thread once more.
At this track, with autumn ground prevailing, he has conditions just right once more and he is one from one over fences when partnered with today's jockey Liam Harrison.
In the races already discussed, Tom Lacey trains a couple of the dangers. Lacey has a bit of a habit of targeting this meeting, especially with Tea Clipper who runs in French Paradoxe's race. That horse won the Silver Trophy for Lacey in 2020 and Blow Your Wad has a good chance to do the same for his connections.
Blow Your Wad was a good bumper horse who fell just a bit shy of his potential last season. That would be in line with his yard as a whole.
Tom Lacey had been a trainer on the up before 2022/23, which the stats suggest was a stall rather than a backwards step.
The upside is that Blow Your Wad could well have more to come this season. When last seen, he ran in a Grade 1 at Aintree. He was well beaten that day, but still on the coattails of the leaders until he made a mistake two out. A mark of 132 need not be beyond him.