Wishfull Thinking justified 8-11 favouritism in the Shloer Chase at Cheltenham.
This two-mile heat lost much of its lustre following the defection of Sprinter Sacre, but it was hard not to be impressed by Philip Hobbs' inmate.
Despite having made a hash of the first fence, the Richard Johnson-ridden Wishfull Thinking jumped cleanly thereafter and had 18 lengths in reserve of Doeslessthanme at the line.
Hobbs said: "I'm delighted. The main problem for a long time has been his breathing - he's had three breathing operations. But this season he has been better with his breathing. We had a scare at the first fence, but he did it well. The Peterborough Chase (Huntingdon, December 13) is now the obvious race - that's definitely an option."
Johnson said: "We had a big scare but he jumped really well."
Coneygree made all of the running to win the Grade Two Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle. The Mark Bradstock-trained five-year-old (8-1) added to his gains at Uttoxeter earlier in the month with an eyecatching display from the front in the hands of Mattie Batchelor.
Batchelor said: "He's got a long way to go, but he'd almost give you a better feel than Carruthers. It wasn't a rubbish field - they are all there to be shot at. I jumped the last and he went away again."
Bradstock, whose inmate is a half brother to the 2011 Hennessy winner Carruthers, said: "It doesn't look much fun out there on the ground. It was a brave performance to go out there and make the running.
"He's a completely different stamp of a horse to Carruthers. Carruthers is only 16 hands and struggles to carry a big weight, whereas you'd hope this fellow could as he looks a proper chaser.
"You could look at either the two-and-a-half (Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle) or the three-miler (Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle) back here in March."
10 March 2014Injured Maguire out of Festival
Maguire airlifted to hospital
Judgement day beckons for Fly
Curtis wants Scholfield for Tea
Que takes aim at Festival landmark
Irving strives to rule Supreme
Clouds lined up for RSA
Gold hopes fading for Topper
Champagne in sparkling form
Sire spearheads Queen Mother entry
Ruby ready to Rock
Confidence behind Conor
Special One bids for Champion glory
Suspensory problem sidelines Chris
Mullins 'very happy' with Fly
Cooper raring to go after fall
National glee for supersub Mullins
Francome fancies New One revenge
Quinn targets another Triumph
Buck's primed for World title bid
Cheltenham team monitor ground
Fenton delays Instalment call
Activial to duck Festival mission
Hope springs eternal for Encore
Fab Fly takes on eight in Champion
9 March 2014Fall leaves Cooper 'badly winded'
Cooper warms up with double
Cooper warms up with double
Avenue roads lead to Irish Oaks
Dude's the main man
Top trainers reject watering
Hinterland takes Champion test
Baltimore sets up bonus bid
Warrior wins Trial battle
Fallon hits Meydan heights
Chartreux bounces back to best
Brave Vic has Final word
Soumillon strikes on super Shea
On His Own joins Gold Cup field
8 March 2014Queally hits Sandown target
Briar tops Bartlett contenders
Calipto leads Triumph hopefuls
Ginge fires burn brightly for Neild
Creek forced out of Gold Cup
Milan targeting Final glory
McCoy to miss Sunday and Monday
Exchange rate pays dividend
Temps doubtful for Festival
Conor settles in at Cheltenham
De Bromhead sweet on Special
Epsom to honour St Nick
Mullins dominates JLT entries
Al and Dynaste top Ryanair field
Big two lead World possibles
7 March 2014Lockinge target for Tonto
All set for a super Saturday
Silver aiming to shine
Imperial only thought for Honeyball
Distance fears for Highland
Montiridge preps for Dubai trip
Ayr gets go-ahead
Ayr delay inspection decision
Benbulben misses Cheltenham
Card 'gut wrencher' for Tizzard
Guard stands tall for new record
Faugheen looms over Neptune field
Ballycasey stands firm in RSA
Sire spearheads Queen Mother list
Australia still in Derby shake-up
Henderson perfectly happy with Tent
Regal leads the way in Imperial