Nicky Richards is shying away from a trip to next month's Cheltenham Festival with Duke Of Navan despite another impressive display in the BetVictor Morebattle Hurdle at Kelso.
The Greystoke handler has endured a couple of relatively quiet campaigns since the retirement of stable stalwart Monet's Garden in 2010, but has a new spring in his step this term following the emergence of both Duke Of Navan and the equally exciting novice hurdler Eduard.
With plenty to find at the ratings with favourite Any Given Day, Richards' charge was allowed to go off at 5-2 and was always travelling smoothly under Brian Harding. Although a peck on landing gave his rival a chance, Harding's mount picked up well on the run-in to take the prize by two and a half lengths.
Duke Of Navan is engaged in the William Hill Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham in March but, like Eduard, is more likely to wait for the Grand National meeting at Aintree in April.
Richards said: "We'll just let the dust settle. He's in at Cheltenham, but we might give that a miss. The two-mile novice (Supreme) looks very hot. He'll probably go to Aintree I would imagine.
"He's a horse I want to develop. I think mentally and physically he's got a bit of developing still to do, so I don't see any benefit of going down to Cheltenham at the moment. We try to buy these type of horses and it's lovely when you get two nice ones like them. It's nice to get out of bed to two lovely horses like that."
Richards completed a double when 3-1 shot Brijomi Queen landed the mares' bumper for the second year in succession.
Coverholder is beginning to look an extremely shrewd purchase after he notched his second win since joining Sue Smith in the Watch Racing UK On Freeview 231 Handicap Hurdle.
The six-year-old was snapped up for 6,000 guineas after winning a Catterick seller for Tim Vaughan in late December and bolted up on his debut for new connections at Doncaster last week. Turned out quickly, the 8-11 favourite easily got the job done again, scoring by five lengths under Jonathan England.
Brian Ellison's Totalize (9-4) ran out a clear-cut winner of the Harry Hill Novices' Hurdle under a fine ride from Danny Cook, while utsider-of-three Kruzhlinin (6-1) claimed the Lloyd Grimme Novices' Chase for the formidable duo Donald McCain and Jason Maguire.
31 May 2016First juvenile success of 2016 for Michael Bell as Cheval Blanche wins at Redcar
Ground eases at Epsom ahead of Derby Festival
Jockey Philip Donovan none the worse following dramatic incident at Towcester
Leicester abandoned due to safety concerns
Marco Botti aims for Nottinghamshire Oaks gold with Sound Of Freedom
Team Valor snap up Thora Barber ahead of Chesham Stakes tilt at Royal Ascot
Holler to take Diamond Jubilee test at Royal Ascot
American sprinter Drafted added to Godolphin's Royal Ascot team
Joseph O'Brien set to saddle first runners next week
Goldream and Move In Time in contention for Prix du Gros-Chene at Chantilly
William Haggas keeping Ascot options open for Sky Kingdom
James Tate maps out handicap plan for Mukaabra
Aidan O'Brien leaves 10 in contention for French Derby glory
William Haggas considering Ribblesdale run with Daphne
Mark Bolger ready for action despite needing stitches in arm injury
Revolutionist strikes Redcar Gold for Mark Johnston
Aidan O'Brien plays waiting game with Epsom Derby septet
Royal Ascot the sole focus for Peter Niven and Clever Cookie
Found and Postponed confirmed for Coronation Cup at Epsom
Peter Chapple-Hyam planning trip increase for Marcel
Sammy Jo Bell begins recovery after leaving hospital
Devonshire team wait on Ascot ground before considering Royal option
Hugo Palmer savouring Classic challenge for Galileo Gold at Ascot
Ascot next on Psychedelic Funk agenda after missing Naas date
30 May 2016Haydock scorer Plata O Plomo to go under the hammer
Four added to Derby field with 18 horses still in the mix for Epsom Classic
Manatee enters Gold Cup frame following French third
Michelle Payne facing crucial period in injury recovery
Only Mine blows Lacken Stakes rivals away at Naas
Speedy Boarding gives James Fanshawe a lift-off in France
Aidan O'Brien happy with Minding after Irish Guineas mishap
No collaring Cuff as Aidan O'Brien's filly too strong for Naas rivals
Peace Envoy returns to winning ways in Rochestown Stakes
Anamba makes up for lost time with stylish win at Naas
Red Verdon set to be supplemented for the Derby at Epsom
David Barron has Pearl primed for Royal Ascot assignment
High hopes for Ribblesdale runner Chicadoro
29 May 2016Blue De Vega to take Tercentenary test at Royal Ascot
Martyn Meade mulling Belmont outing for Irish Rookie
David Griffiths expecting bold Ascot show from Take Cover
Tepin team confirm Royal Ascot is still the plan for star mare
Adrian Nicholls denied farewell ride due to Catterick ground
Grizzel books Ascot ticket with Beverley glory
Ger O'Neill taken to hospital following Beverley fall
Quiet Reflection makes memorable Haydock impression in Sandy Lane
Home Of The Brave takes Jury verdict at Haydock
Ice Slice too sharp for Clotilde at Haydock
Journey goes the distance for Gosden and Dettori at Haydock
Ger Lyons vies for Naas Listed honours with Psychedelic Funk
Godolphin's Skiffle supplemented for Oaks at Epsom
28 May 2016Tepin team mulling Royal Ascot plan following Saturday spin
Prince reigns at Beverley for Cowell and Morris
Jockey Adrian Nicholls to call it a day after Catterick ride
Anamba returns at Naas for Mick Halford
Royal Ascot beckons for Nasimi following Haydock triumph for Charlie Appleby
Michael O'Callaghan considers Royal Ascot for Naas-bound Spy Ring
Ed Walker sets his sights on France with Stormy Antarctic
Martyn Meade sweet on Aclaim at Naas
Mark Johnston retains faith in Buratino ahead of Haydock return
Godolphin's Brave buy out to strike at Haydock
John Gosden pinning his hopes on Journey at Haydock
Ann Duffield hoping Rainbow emerges from the Mist at Beverley
Mark Johnston hoping for Hilary Needler repeat with Boater