Wishfull Thinking stayed on strongly from the final fence to capture the Betfair Super Saturday Chase at Newbury, but there was scant evidence to unsettle Sprinter Sacre's connections.
The Philip Hobbs-trained gelding looked set for third place once French Opera and Edgardo Sol took over after the pacesetting Shooters Wood had run his race.
Wishfull Thinking (4-1) still had plenty to do at the last, but found extra for Richard Johnson to win by two lengths.
Hobbs said: "It was a good job it was two-miles-one and not two miles, as he kept going and going.
"It was worrying how quickly he stopped at Kempton last time, it might have been something to do with his wind, but he did that well today.
"I suppose he will go for the Champion Chase, as Menorah will hopefully go for the Ryanair and there's a good prize for finishing second to Sprinter Sacre."
Paul Nicholls, successful with Silviniaco Conti, added another when Unioniste (4-5 favourite), last seen winning the big December handicap at Cheltenham, emerged ahead of Hadrian's Approach in a desperate struggle for the Better Prices On Betfair Mobile Novices' Chase.
"He idles and I knew he'd need a stronger pace and bigger field," said Nicholls. "If there's a race for him at Cheltenham, the RSA would probably be the one. I don't think he'd be quick enough for the Jewson."
2 September 2014ARC "committed" to Newcastle plan
Panther primed for Leger mission
Noble on Champion Mission
Danzeno to enter big league
Story set for Dubai return
Ruler in line for Foy return
BHA turn down Newcastle bid
Towcester not "turning its back"
Demuro booked for Moon Arc prep
Chicquita nears return
Murphy excited by Purse
Surprise Matron aim for Tapestry
Maguire nearing racecourse return
Estimate among bumper Cup entry
Maguire hails 'fantastic' Peddlers
Balding staying grounded with Park
Culloty joins Leger Legends
Regard among September possibles
Cox takes Haydock plunge with Love
Paddy gunning for Chepstow
Athenian has sales date
No hurry for Cape call
Mirza on Abbaye trail
1 September 2014McCain salutes retiring Peddlers
Seven Towcester meetings go to ARC
Further checks for Condon
Due set to miss Sprint date
Condon 'stable' after Cork fall
Queen rules supreme for Smith
River eases to debut success
Carla tops it up to four
Atzeni strikes on Cappella
Ocean team want Haydock rain
Big time beckons for Orange
Palmer aims high with Aktabantay
Hills ponders Dutch gameplan
31 August 2014Atzeni strikes on Cappella
Imminent return Likely
Logic on comeback trail
Dan edges closer to Mile high
Keane error costly for Unrequited
Notarfbad makes all in Mildmay
Orange enjoys Big win
Fabre strikes with Fintry
Akta in late Solario swoop
Icon takes starring role
Pearl fires home in Bullet
Shortall suffers injury setback
Tent team consider chasing
30 August 2014Keane error costly for Unrequited
Shepherd's sent to Tower
Time will tell for Charlton
Stack filly Alive to chance
Sansevero sent to Tower
Palmer plots Solario success
Fabre has high hopes for Fintry
Belardo team keen on Champagne
Rigueur targets Chester consolation
Native in hunt for Bullet gains
Arc still target for Taghrooda