Spifer's victory in the feature handicap at Kempton is unlikely to rank highly in Marco Botti's career achievements, but he was still grateful the prize was on offer at all.
It was a minor surprise to see one of the rising stars of the sport braving the snow for the only British meeting left on Saturday, and he could have more rewarding days yet with a horse who arrived at his yard with a dubious reputation.
With all but the strip of Polytrack covered by a white blanket, it was rather appropriate to see an all-grey finish to the William Hill iPhone, iPad, iPad Mini Handicap as Spifer (9-2) held Greylami by a short head, with Noble Silk just half a length behind in third.
When in the hands of Newmarket's other Italian-born trainer, Luca Cumani, Spifer had shown plenty of potential, but threw away several winning opportunities by ducking to the left, and this was his first taste of victory since shedding his maiden tag in the spring of 2011.
Andrea Atzeni rode him cautiously behind a sedate pace carved out by Aquilonius, sneaking into the lead up the inside with a furlong remaining.
"This is enjoyable," said Botti with a chuckle. "The snow hasn't been too much of a problem in Newmarket and we've been able to work as normal."
Of Spifer, he said: "We learned a lot from his second run for us and I told Andrea to take his time. I think he won with a bit left in hand, and he was never going to win by far. There are a few more class two and three handicaps on the all-weather so I would think we will keep him going."
John Bridger reported difficulties with the weather at his Liphook base, but at least he was able to use Willy Twiston-Davies, who had been booked for the abandoned meeting at Lingfield but diverted to replace Sean Levey on Welsh Inlet (5-1) to land the William Hill No.1 Downloaded Betting App Handicap.
The trainer said: "I rang them three times to see if it was on today as we're quite high up and I was worried about driving through the lanes. Willy normally rides her and his 5lb claim is a big help. The surface is riding slower and I think it helped her as she won on the soft at Brighton in the summer.
"I have her in here tomorrow as well. I probably won't run her, but I'll see how she is."
29 July 2015Tributes pour in for O'Sullevan
It's Shanahan's turn at Galway
Sir Peter O'Sullevan dies, aged 97
Kachy not for catching in Molecomb
No Sussex regrets for O'Brien
Solow flying high at Goodwood
Highland reels in Gordon rivals
Fortune favours Twiston-Davies
Peacock pair vie for Galway glory
Shalaa in top trim for Richmond
Dunlop excited by Trip to Goodwood
Moviesta gets King George go-ahead
Karakontie has Deauville date
Dog delivers for Mullins and Walsh
Tint proves Topaz jewel
Maguire back in the saddle
Blue back with a bang
Tough Toormore takes Lennox glory
All roads lead to Arc for Postponed
Logan shines for Kirby
Frankie grabs Gold at Goodwood
So seeking Sussex success
28 July 2015King targeting Molecomb reign
Mullins hoping Bob is back
Wayman lands BHA role
Medrano eyeing Gordon glory
Options open for Force
Group race aim for Nisser
Modem takes control
Solitaire shines in Weld double
Bach in business
Vastonea out to sparkle in Topaz
Tanzeel unlikely for Cup date
Birch bids for Vintage victory
Toor targets Lennox triumph
Gleneagles misses Solow clash
Charlton eager for Golden Test
27 July 2015Modem takes control
Bach in business
Morny 'ideal race' for Gutaifan
Fahey ponders options for Guest
Perth double-header a washout
Sovereign option for Kodi
Salisbury option for Salvo
Group One trio top Nassau entries
Rain claims Tuesday Perth card
Perth card in doubt
McDonald nets Carlisle hat-trick
Mondialiste impresses in Pomfret
Injury in stalls forces Pilot out
Coleman lands Ferguson role
Gutaifan takes Papin honours
O'Brien plots Goodwood Air raid
Toormore seeks Lennox redemption
Buratino to take flight in Phoenix
Sovereign too soon for Elm Park
26 July 2015Lonsdale aim for admirable Cookie
Murphy looking for Top performance
Rizeena to chart Rothschild route
Erupt firing for Niel Arc prep
Meade sweet on Hugh's for Kurland
Newland considers Pineau future
Injured McCullagh 'very stable'
Ship ready to Fire in Pomfret
BHA to launch Bid inquiry
Post delivers in King George epic
Horn set York mission
Speedy Tanzeel downs Dash rivals
Guest is heaven sent for Fahey
Tullius topples Tonto at York
Goodwood heroes back for more
Besh the best in Princess Margaret
Sixth Sense an Ascot blockbuster