Jockey Sam Twiston-Davies was thrilled get both himself and father Nigel off the cold list at this crucial stage of the season as he booted home a double at Bangor.
It promises to be a huge couple of weeks for the Naunton-based team as they put the finishing touches to their Cheltenham Festival squad, with The New One and Imperial Commander the star names. Having gone 18 days without a winner prior to the start of play at Bangor, there will have been a sigh of relief by all associated with the camp as the father-son combination stopped the quiet spell in Wales.
Tullyraine had been well beaten on his last couple of starts over fences and was a 15-2 chance switching back to the smaller obstacles for Weatherbys Bank Handicap Hurdle. It was clear from the early stage the nine-year-old was enjoying the change of discipline and, having tracked the leaders, he picked up well from the home turn to put the race to bed. He safely negotiated the final flight to seal a two-and-a-half-length verdict over 2-1 joint-favourite Corrin Wood.
Sam Twiston-Davies said: "It's nice to get off the cold list just before Cheltenham. They've all been running well, we've just not had much luck and maybe a few of the horses have been running in the wrong races."
Of Tullyraine, Twiston-Davies jnr said: "Things just hadn't been going quite right. He'd been flat out over fences and hadn't been enjoying himself, so it's nice to get him back over hurdles. He's jumped well on the whole and won well and I think he'll stay over hurdles for now to get his confidence up. We can always go chasing again next year."
The Twiston-Davies' completed the brace as 11-4 joint-favourite Tara Rose landed the Zuidam UK Novices' Handicap Chase.
Sue Smith's Coverholder (8-15 favourite) bagged his fourth straight win in less than a month in the Weatherbys Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide Handicap Hurdle. Snapped up for just 6,000 guineas after winning a Catterick seller in late December, the six-year-old is proving to be an extremely shrewd acquisition and might not be done winning yet judged on his latest seven-length triumph.
Smith told Racing UK: "He's been lovely. I couldn't be more pleased with him and he's done absolutely everything right. He's improved every time he's run, he's a very well-bred horse and he's very smart over his hurdles. We don't do a lot of work with him because he's run so frequently. I'm really looking forward to him next season over fences."
Following four successive placed efforts, Venetia Williams-trained 7-4 favourite Ciceron claimed a first win over fences in the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Centre Beginners' Chase.
Winning jockey Liam Treadwell said: "He was entitled to do that. He's had some tough targets over two miles over fences, end-to-end gallop stuff, and it just worked perfectly. It's pleasing he's built on what he's shown already over fences."
30 April 2016Eddie Lynam and Sole Power charged up for Newmarket House raid
David Elsworth has Arabian Queen in bloom for Dahlia Stakes at Newmarket
Eddie Lynam and Sole Power charged up for Newmarket House raid
Marcel set to feel the Force in 2000 Guineas
Fringe a cut above at Punchestown once more
Gavin Cromwell joy as Jer's Girl has the power at Punchestown
Vroum Vroum Mag hits top gear at Punchestown for Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh
Minding out to master 1000 Guineas rivals at Newmarket
Classic 'acid test' looms for 2000 Guineas favourite Air Force Blue
Limini sights set on Mares Champion prize at Punchestown
Jack Hobbs returns in 'proper' Jockey Club Stakes at Newmarket
29 April 2016Jack Kennedy dazzles aboard Punchestown winner Definite Ruby
Avant Tout sweet at Punchestown under cool Paul Townend
Shin A Vee glee at Punchestown for Denis Cullen
Sir Michael Stoute throws Cannock Chase in Huxley hat at Chester
Iain Jardine keen on Nakeeta for Chester Cup glory
David Wachman calls time on Legatissimo career
John Gosden considers racecourse gallop for Derby dark horse Royal Artillery
Lingfield Friday card switched to the all-weather
Apple's Jade seeking Champion honours at Punchestown
Minding heads sweet sixteen for 1000 Guineas at Newmarket
Champion jockey Silvestre de Sousa not banking on title defence
Michael O'Leary admits to Don Cossack career fears
All options open next year to dazzling Douvan after festival hat-trick
This is where we want to be - Warren Greatrex on top with One Track Mind
Nicky Henderson gets on Punchestown scoresheet with Cup Final
Quantitativeeasing adds up to La Touche glory for Enda Bolger
Galileo Gold all the rage in 2000 Guineas market
Bright New Dawn lights up Punchestown Festival
'Not a bother' on National hero Rule The World after Punchestown
Willie Mullins pursues Punchestown prize with revved-up Vroum Vroum Mag
Gavin Cromwell has Jer's Girl 'in great nick' for Punchestown date
28 April 2016Dynamite Douvan delivers once more at Punchestown
One Track Mind takes Stayers Hurdle honours as Shaneshill crashes out
Ed Dunlop - Derby trial option open to Amazing Red
Elusive Ivy not for catching at Punchestown
Steve Rogers confirmed by Roger Varian for Chester Cup
Noel Meade relief as Road To Riches escapes serious injury
Willie Mullins gives Limini the chance to shine at Punchestown
Ivanovich Gorbatov and Apple's Jade renew rivalry at Punchestown
Air Force Blue spearheads 2000 Guineas field at Newmarket for Aidan O'Brien
Augusta Kate has Lee Westwood and Alan Shearer celebrating Punchestown glory
Cavalier carries big weight to Punchestown triumph
Barry Geraghty salutes John Kiely as Carlingford takes Gold at Punchestown
Blow By Blow makes it a first Grade One success for Katie Walsh at Punchestown
Bellshill digs deep for Daily Mirror Novice honours at Punchestown
All-the-way Gifted Master on top in Pavilion Stakes
Mizzou makes it a Sagaro double at Ascot
Wesley Ward lives the American dream at Ascot
27 April 2016Annie Power 'has done enough' and misses Champion Hurdle date at Punchestown
Carlingford Lough beats big guns to Punchestown Gold
Opera on song to register Punchestown triumph
Back-to-back Punchestown successes for Shamiran
Miss Temple City on course for Cambridge outing at Royal Ascot
Charlie Hills hoping Dutch can make winning connection in Lockinge
Alpha Des Obeaux aiming to claim Stayers prize at Punchestown for Morris
Jer's Girl tops Champion Novice field for Gavin Cromwell
Willie Mullins hoping Douvan can continue to sparkle at Punchestown
Vroum Vroum Mag takes Champion challenge as Annie Power misses Punchestown date
Saval Beg option for Order Of St George return
Jonjo O'Neill mulling Haydock hurdles option for Holywell
Hugo Palmer eager to avoid We Are Ninety comparisons
Blue De Vega team bide their time on Guineas call
Zabana lands Champion Novice prize for Lynch and Russell
Lion roars to pip Jenkins in Land Rover
God's Own delivers Champion triumph for George and Brennan at Punchestown
O'Brien admits Air Force Blue has stamina questions to answer in 2000 Guineas
Aidan O'Brien planning triple assault on 1000 Guineas at Newmarket
Don't Touch It too good as Yorkhill disappoints at Punchestown
Willie Mullins banks on Bellshill to stay strong at Punchestown
Hugo Palmer hands Ascot mission to Gifted Master
Colin Tizzard has Cue Card in the 'form of his life' for Punchestown Gold Cup