Kevin Ryan continued his recent domination of the Connaught Access Flooring Abernant Stakes as Brando claimed back-to-back victories at Newmarket in the hands of Tom Eaves.
Brando obliged as the even-money favourite for this six-furlong Group Three 12 months ago, providing his Hambleton-based trainer with a third victory in four years following the previous triumphs of Hamza (2014) and Astaire (2015).
The six-year-old went on to claim Group One glory in the Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville, but having lost his way at the back-end of the campaign, he was a 9-2 chance for his seasonal return.
Brando was held up towards the rear of the field for much of the way, but powered home to claim a decisive victory by three-quarters of a length. Sir Dancealot was best of the rest in second, with Projection just holding on for third.
Heavily-backed 6-5 favourite Le Brivido never threatened to land a telling blow, while Spirit Of Valor finished last of the eight runners.
Ryan said: “He was due to go to Dubai, but his last piece of work wasn’t where I wanted him to be, so the owners said don’t run him.
“The last 10 days he’s turned the corner and has really come to himself.
“I think we’ll have to space out his runs more this year. He ran so well in the July Cup last year (finished third) and it comes so soon after Royal Ascot. Do I sacrifice one for the other? I’ll discuss it with the owners.
“We may go back to York next for the Duke of York. It went pear-shaped last year (finished last of 12), but he has good form there. Nothing’s set in stone yet.”