Basic Fact gave trainer Jonjo O’Neill his first winner for four weeks with a game victory in the feature ladbrokes.com Leicestershire Silver Fox Handicap Chase at Leicester.
Suited by a fast pace and under a vigorous ride from Tony McCoy, the 12-1 shot led at the final fence and held last year’s runner-up Mandingo Chief by half a length.
The first two drew five lengths clear of Lindsay while Mokum, who took this prize 12 months ago, plugged on for fourth spot.
“AP gave him a fantastic ride,” said O’Neill’s representative Paddy Brennan, who is not related to the jump jockey of the same name.
“He’s been very tricky. He takes a bit of riding, but he stuck on gamely and it’s good to get his head in front.
“They went a good gallop and that was the key.”
O’Neill and McCoy were denied a double when Olay Olay just failed to make all in the ladbrokes.com Vale of Belvoir Novices’ Chase.
He was headed after the last by Bengo, the 9-4 favourite, who held Olay Olay’s renewed effort by a neck in the hands of Robert Thornton, who was riding him for the first time.
“He’s battled on well, so many times he’s threatened to deceive us,” said trainer Ben de Haan.
“He’s travelled well and then not seen the race out but today he stayed on well.
“He missed the last ditch (four out) and I thought that was it.”
Stumped (13-2) surprised his trainer Henry Daly by coming from last to first in the ladbrokes.com Leicestershire Handicap Hurdle.
He came through the pack to lead two out and draw nine lengths clear of Mohayer as McCoy was second again on what was a spare ride on Donald McCain’s charge.
“I thought he was going to be last down the back, but they went a hell of a gallop and he likes soft ground,” said Daly, who was ending a 27-day winless spell.
“It’s got Mr O’Neill and myself off the cold list anyway,” Daly quipped.
One Gulp also relished the conditions when following up a Newbury success in the ladbrokes.com Novices’ Hurdle.
The 5-2 favourite led at the final flight under Dominic Elsworth and ran on well to beat the strong-finishing 100-1 shot Rock Wren by two lengths.
“She has to have soft ground, that’s the most important thing for her. We haven’t made any plans for her as it all depends on the ground,” said trainer Paul Webber.
Zorro De La Vega survived an inquiry to give trainer David Pipe a winner from his only runner at the track in the ladbrokes.com Lewis Cully 21st Birthday Novices’ Handicap Chase.
The 7-2 market leader went across to the nearside rail on the run-in but it made no difference as Tom Scudamore’s mount held King Diamond by a length and a half, with Solarias Quest third.
“We’re very pleased with that and the stable is in form at the moment,” said Pipe’s travelling head lass Jill Ellis.
Axinit (5-1) ran his rivals ragged to register an easy all-the-way win in the ladbrokes.com Hoby Selling Hurdle.
Conditional jockey John Flavin, who claims 7lb, snatched a handy lead down the back as Axinit came home unchallenged by nine lengths from Sninfia. The winner was retained by the Evan Williams stable for 5,000 guineas.