Sizing Pottsie successfully graduated to Grade Three level with a facile success in the Flyingbolt Novice Chase at Navan.
Having unseated his rider on his fencing debut at Leopardstown over the Christmas period, Jessica Harrington’s charge bolted up at Fairyhouse less than a fortnight ago to earn himself a step up in class.
Willie Mullins-trained favourite Cut The Mustard appeared to be travelling strongly at the top of the home straight, but 11-4 chance Sizing Pottsie took her measure fairly comfortably in the end, pulling 12 lengths clear in the hands of Robbie Power.
“It was a good performance. The chase track is very heavy and he handles that ground very well,” said winning rider.
“It’s only 10 days since he won in Fairyhouse and it was a brave call from Jessie to come back so quick.
“He’s an exceptional jumper for a novice. He possibly want two and a half miles miles on better ground, but he handles that testing ground so well that I wouldn’t be in a rush to go up in trip yet.”
Mullins had earlier teamed up with stable jockey Paul Townend to land the navanracecourse.ie Maiden Hurdle with 3-1 shot Golden Spread.
The dual bumper winner had finished well beaten on his first two starts over obstacles at Cork and Thurles, but displayed a willing attitude in the testing conditions to get up and beat Bois De Clamart by a length.
“He’s been disappointing so far this season to be quite honest, but he found a bit of his old form there today and the race worked out for us,” said Townend.
“Three miles and a fence is what he wants, that’s where he is going to end up, and anything he does before that is a bonus.”
Gordon Elliott won the Shamrock Festival Racing 14th March Maiden Hurdle with his apparent second string Metal Man (6-1), ridden by Davy Russell. The Cullentra handler’s 4-6 favourite Galet D’Oudairies was only third.
Joseph O’Brien’s Scarlet And Dove justified 5-4 favouritism in the Dunmoe Mares Maiden Hurdle under JJ Slevin, before her owners Gigginstown House Stud completed a double with Henry de Bromhead’s 5-1 market leader Punitive in the Athboy Handicap Hurdle, with 7lb claimer Hugh Morgan in the plate.