Silviniaco Conti rallied strongly to beat Dynaste in a thrilling renewal of the Betfred Bowl at Aintree.
- Related Content
The Paul Nicholls trained eight-year-old added another Grade 1 prize to his list of honours after winning the King George VI Chase on Boxing Day.
Noel Fehily had the 9/4 second favourite up with the pace from the off, eventually getting the better of First Lieutenant to set the kind of steady pace he was happy with.
He made a bad mistake six out but soon recovered and travelled nicely as they turned for home, albeit with plenty of challengers not far behind.
Menorah dropped out with a bad mistake at the second last and, just as he had in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham, Silviniaco Conti drifted between the last two as Dynaste came with his challenge.
But he was soon back on an even keel, jumping the last in unison with David Pipe's grey, and he found more on the run-in to hold on by just under two lengths with outsider Argocat running on well for third.
Fehily said: "I think he likes a little bit of company, he likes to go along with other horses.
"I was ever so disappointed to get beat in the Gold Cup because I thought he was the best horse and in the end I didn't end up in the first three."
- Photo Galleries/
- All the best images from day one of Grand National Meeting
Nicholls added: "I wanted to be very positive with him - he keeps on galloping. He did the job well. He's won a King George and this, so it's brilliant.
"I'll talk to the lads, there's Punchestown but I think we'll probably end it (the season) on that."
"We've needed a good chaser after Kauto and Denman, and he's done fantastically right. We'll try and put that right (his defeat in the Gold Cup) and win some races along the way."
Pipe was pleased with Dynaste's run, which seems likely to be his last of the season,
"It was a cracking run and we'll look forward for next season now," he said. "It'll be the same sort of races and aim towards Cheltenham again.
"He's had a fantastic season and I'd say Punchestown was unlikely because he's had two tough races."