Venetia Williams has never been afraid of sending her horses on long journeys and the Herefordshire handler plundered the feature prize at Catterick with Shangani.
Williams is enjoying her best season for nearly a decade and is operating at a near-20% strike-rate. Her fortunes surprisingly dipped after winning the Grand National with Mon Mome in 2009 but they are well and truly on the rise again now. She houses numerous young chasers on the up, as well as a live Gold Cup outsider in Katenko, and, along with stable jockey Aidan Coleman, they will not want the season to end.
Shangani won at Sandown just nine days ago and despite a 9lb rise the seven-year-old had no trouble in seeing off Mr Syntax as the 7-4 favourite in the £12,000 Weatherbys Bank Handicap Chase.
Coleman said: "He was very good at Sandown so he was entitled to come and win this. It's good prize-money, so fair play to Venetia and the team at home for spotting this race.
"We've been very lucky up north this season and we've had a few winners at Musselburgh so we've been rewarded for travelling. This horse is very versatile, he made the running the last day, but only because nothing else wanted to. Ideally he wants to be ridden like this - dropped in with a lead. He's a safe jumper and is improving nicely."
Trainer Michael Smith has a nice prospect on his hands in the shape of Imperial Vic, who defied a double penalty in the racinguk.com Novices´ Hurdle. Ridden by Danny Cook, Imperial Vic stayed on strongly to win by two lengths as the 6-4 favourite.
Smith said: "Whatever he does this year is a bonus. We had him in at Doncaster last week in a handicap but I decided to come here with a double penalty instead. The ground was no problem and I'm really excited about running him over fences."
Barry Keniry was in double form with David O'Meara's White Fusion (8-1) in the Cheltenham Preview Evening March 1st Handicap Hurdle and the Simon Shirley-Beavan-trained Rapidolyte De Ladalka in the Weatherbys Hamilton Insurance Novices´ Handicap Chase.
Shirley-Beavan's chaser holds an entry in the four-miler at Cheltenham but a change in the rules has not worked in his favour for that contest, according to his trainer, who said: "They let horses who have won over hurdles run in it now and I'd have thought they'd have too much speed for him, all he does is stay. He's a smashing jumper and was only getting going at the finish."
Keith Reveley's Vinetta (5-1) came with a wet sail to land the yorkshire-outdoors.co.uk Handicap Hurdle. Colm McCormack, riding his 18th winner, did not give up, despite being several lengths down at the last, and the mare finished with a rare rattle to beat Alta Rock by a length.
16 April 2014True class tells at Newmarket
Buywise books big-race targets
Sandiva strikes for Dettori
Power runs Free at Newmarket
Magnus magic for Hannon
Cantlow on track for Fairyhouse
Kingman well-being delights Gosden
Walsh to ride out this weekend
Byron all set for Hong Kong mission
Gosden stays in winning Spirit
'Tentative' Cup entry for Zarkandar
Draw joy for Grandeur
Kiyoshi pleases in Newmarket spin
Leather in frame for Jockey Club
Tropics warming to Abernant task
Judge lays down law in Sefton
Toormore on trial in Craven
All eyes on Strauss at Newmarket
Ridge out to peak at Newmarket
Eduard camp look to the future
Mohammed outlines Educate plans
Dreaper duo on National service
Scott learns Melodic lesson
Bobs Worth unlikely for Punchestown
Williams - Buy needs to Wise up
Fly on track for more records
Arod team take cautious approach
Obliterator ready to roar for Lyons
Night camp favour French Guineas
Free and easy for 'forward' Medinah
Fahey braced for Sand storm
15 April 2014Minstrel a Punchestown possible
Joe considered for Cork encounter
Toormore the star turn in Craven
Inch edges closer to Oaks bid
Appleby backs Ring to fire
Oliver wants more from Set To Go
Double tops for Easterby
Varian - Hill in peak form
Hawk has eyes on Lingfield prize
Doyle in awe of Kingman engine
Art given Victoria target
Ground key to Thakhira Classic aim
Cyclone heading for Punchestown
Hopes still high for Hydrogen
Botti in no rush with Hawill
Soumillon booked for Spanish raider
Obliterator takes Newmarket trial
14 April 2014Taaffe ponders Argocat options
Meain machine set for Punchestown
Competitive field for Nell Gwyn
Curragh workouts delight O'Brien
Inis all the way in Listed heat
Sruthan away to winning start
Burke keen on Rivellino claims
Ground key to Cubanita plans
Derby entry Ectot shows class
Back to sprinting for Astaire
Berkshire team mull options
Millman relishing Carpenter future
13 April 2014Newmarket ground pleases Prosser
Golden Wonder states Classic case
Rock rolls to Ballysax success
Eduard one for the future
Scottish glory for Bowen and Co
Spencer strikes on Kaka
Sparrow takes flight at Ayr
Kingman new favourite for Guineas
Estimate easing her way back
Stack star set for Alleged return