Kim Bailey's fine run of form continued as Harry Topper came from the clouds to land a strong renewal of the Grade Two GPG Novices' Chase at Newbury.
Having impressed on his fencing bow at Exeter, Harry Topper was a 3-1 shot faced with five talented opponents who had all won their most recent starts.
Irish raider Benefficient disputed the lead with Highland Lodge throughout and looked the likely winner when seeing off that rival between the final two fences. At that stage Harry Topper still had upwards of 10 lengths to make up on the leader, but he fairly rattled home on the run-in under Timmy Murphy to score by a length and a half.
Bailey, who is normally quite restrained in his post-race assessments, said: "He won't see a racecourse very often, as Timmy said I've got to look after him as he is desperately weak.
"He'll run one or two more times this season, because he is very, very good. I've always held a very high opinion of him and he's the best horse I've had since Master Oats. He wants flat, galloping tracks at the moment, and in 18 months' time I'd hope you will see him at Cheltenham. He is the horse of my dreams."
Sizing Santiago claimed an eventful Sportingbet Handicap Chase for Peter Bowen and Jamie Moore.
Sent off at 9-1 following a good run in defeat at Cheltenham's Open meeting a fortnight ago, Sizing Santiago was never too far off the pace in the extended two-mile-six-furlong contest and moved into the lead on the run to the third-last. The challengers were queuing up to have a crack at him all the way up the straight but Sizing Santiago held on grimly to score by a length from Our Bomber Harris.
The horse to take from the race was undoubtedly Rigadin De Beauchene, whose conditional jockey Robert Dunne performed miracles to stay in the saddle following a horrendous mistake four fences from home. Just when it looked as though his chance had gone, he rallied to grab third spot and was probably unlucky not to win.
Dunne said: "It helped that he kept straight, so I was able to hang on. Coming to the second-last, I still thought I was going to win but he is not a nimble horse and that put an end to it."
Bowen said of the winner: "I got him at the May sales, and I wanted him because he is a half-brother to Take The Stand. He's only a six-year-old and is actually better than Take The Stand was at his age. We'll see what the handicapper does now."
25 October 2016Thistlecrack hardens as Gold Cup favourite following thrilling Chepstow return
Value At Risk comes good over fences at Bangor
All roads lead back to Aintree for Vics Canvas
Thistlecrack oozes class on chasing debut at Chepstow
Saphir Du Rheu set to take hurdles option at Wetherby
Dual Group One winner Twilight Son retired to Cheveley Park Stud
Silviniaco Conti enjoys Chepstow gallop ahead of Down Royal return
Seeyouatmidnight all set for Carlisle comeback
Charlie Longsdon derailed by injuries to big names
Simon Crisford has Breeders' Cup ambitions for Rodaini
Ben Pauling has Grand National designs for Becher-bound Silvergrove
Mark Johnston could seek Far East enlightment with Lumiere
Sylvester Kirk backs Salouen to go the distance next season
James Nash plots Aintree return with 'amazing' Your Busy
Aidan O'Brien expects Minding to stay in training
Silviniaco Conti booked for Chepstow workout before racing
Tea For Two in mix for Sodexo Gold Cup
Double Shuffle in BetVictor frame for Tom George
Churchill form boost pleases Aidan O'Brien
Weather frustration set to continue for Ben Pauling and Barters Hill
Neil Mulholland to consider Haldon Gold Cup option for Fox Norton
Coneygree given Charlie Hall Wetherby entry 'just in case'
Colin Tizzard has Thistlecrack sharp and ready for Chepstow chasing bow
Time called on career of dual Derby hero Harzand
24 October 2016Tawdeea to take aim at Doncaster after Leicester strike
Coologue considered for Hennessy Gold Cup by Charlie Longsdon
Forgotten Rules team cool on hurdling career
Henry Candy has sole focus on Breeders' Cup Mile with Limato
Meydan a 'potential' destination for Gordon Elliott and Commissioned
Noel Meade rules Apache Stronghold out for the season
Ben Pauling to duck Bangor mission with Barters Hill
Third Intention books Hennessy ticket with Old Roan victory
Found set to be given Breeders' Cup Classic entry
Vazirabad repeats Prix Royal-Oak success
Titus rules in Leopardstown clash
Making Light betters colts in Killavullan Stakes
Flying Fairies floors Zawraq at Leopardstown
No Charlie Hall run for Gold Cup hero Coneygree
Native River in frame for Wetherby reappearance
William Haggas keeps Rivet's Guineas options open
23 October 2016Third Intention claims Old Roan Chase at Aintree
Titus rules in Leopardstown clash
Smooth success for White Satin Dancer at Leopardstown
Luke Morris breaks collar bone in Chelmsford fall
David Menuisier looks to France with Make Time
Jonjo O'Neill in no rush with Festival hero Minella Rocco
Eve Johnson Houghton raises hurdles possibility for What About Carlo
Fox Norton and Shantou Village provide Neil Mulholland with Cheltenham double
Rivet nails Yucatan as Andrea Atzeni strikes again at Doncaster
Identity Thief hacks up on chasing bow at Punchestown
Sceau so good at Cheltenham
Soie D'Leau strikes for Stubbs on Town Moor
Graham Lee times it right as Duretto pounces at Newbury
Rob Hornby blossoms on Doncaster scorer Rosie Briar
Feisty Coologue back on the straight and narrow at Cheltenham
Pleaseletmewin surges to Newbury glory for Ralph Beckett
22 October 2016Fox Norton back with a bang at Cheltenham
Laurence takes Doncaster prize after stewards' inquiry
Randox Health sign five-year County Hurdle sponsorship deal
Spanish Tenor aiming to hit winning note in Killavullan date
Zawraq takes Trigo test as he returns from lengthy absence
Prescott uncertain ahead of Pallasator's Saint-Cloud spin
Tom George hoping for winning return from God's Own in Old Roan
Sun Bets announced as All-Weather Championships sponsor
Waller targeting third Cox Plate win with Winx following Moonee Valley stroll
Simon Crisford sets Rodaini Newbury challenge
Neil Mulholland has Shantou Village ready to roll at Cheltenham
Winx impresse as she claims second Cox Plate victory
Heron Heights peaks as Henry de Bromhead returns to winning ways at Cheltenham
Frankel colt Mirage Dancer delivers at Doncaster
Blow for Bryan Smart as Delectation heads to Germany
Jonjo O'Neill sees sense in Carlisle comeback for More Of That
Legendary chaser Moscow Flyer dies aged 22
Yucatan leads the way for O'Brien in Trophy test at Doncaster
National Hunt Chase to be run in honour of JT McNamara
Identity Thief makes chasing bow at Punchestown
Norwegian raider Quarterback aiming for winning Newbury run