Harry Cobden is confident Greaneteen will go on to bigger and better things after maintaining his unbeaten record over fences with a polished display at Fakenham.
A winner on his chasing debut at Ascot in December before following up at Musselburgh on New Year’s Day, the Paul Nicholls-trained six-year-old was the 2-5 favourite to complete his hat-trick in the Racing To School Riders’ Programme Novices’ Chase.
With just two rivals in opposition, Cobden sent Greaneteen straight to the lead and a slick round of jumping kept the pressure on the chasing pair.
Champagne Mystery attempted to bridge the gap in the straight, but Greaneteen never looked in any danger of being caught and passed the post five lengths to the good.
Cobden told Sky Sports Racing: “They’re quite trappy fences around here and he came out of my hands a couple of times and put me back in my place!
“He’s a pleasure to ride and he’s actually a very good horse. It’s nice for Chris Giles (owner) to have a good one.”
Greaneteen holds an entry in the Arkle Trophy at next month’s Cheltenham Festival and now qualifies for handicaps, bringing the Grand Annual into the equation.
However, Cobden feels he could sidestep the showpiece meeting in the Cotswolds entirely.
He added: “I’d like to see him do something at Aintree. He hasn’t got that much experience, although he’s so good (at jumping). We could go to Aintree and possibly have one more run between now and then, or go straight there.
“Paul is the master of placing them – I’m only a schoolboy. I do rate this horse quite highly.”
There was a shock result to the British EBF ‘National Hunt’ Novices’ Hurdle, with 1-6 favourite Fix Sun mowed down late by Alan King’s 8-1 shot Fraternal.
Winning jockey Tom Cannon said: “He’d not had many runs – that’s only the third run of his life.
“The ground was probably a bit soft at Plumpton last time and it was his first run in a long time. On slightly better ground and with that run under his belt, it stood him in good stead.
“He had a good jump at the last and saw it out nicely.”
King completed a quick-fire double in the very next race, with Senior Citizen justifying 13-8 favouritism in the Tim Barclay Memorial Handicap Chase in the hands of Adrian Heskin.
Outsider of five Premier D’Troice was a 9-1 winner of the Valentine’s Day Novices’ Handicap Hurdle for trainer Archie Watson and amateur rider Brodie Hampson.
Rose Loxton’s 4-11 favourite Shantou Flyer predictably outclassed his rivals in the William Bulwer Long Memorial ‘Grassroots’ Hunters’ Chase under owner-jockey David Maxwell.
He said: “Shantou has been a bit of a thinker, but today was more like a horse a 41-year-old married man wants to be riding!
“He’s entitled to line up for the Foxhunter at Cheltenham. If I get Bob And Co qualified I’d probably ride him, but on that performance today, you’d be going to Cheltenham with a few hopes.”
Lucy Wadham’s newcomer Martello Sky was a 4-1 winner of the concluding bumper, with Eoin Walsh in the saddle.