A Taunton novice hurdle would usually be easy pickings for a Cheltenham Festival hopeful, so it was a little unfortunate for connections that two appeared in the same race as Urbain De Sivola and Ifyouletmefinish forced a dead-heat.
Evidence for the Bathwick Tyres Taunton 'National Hunt' Novices' Hurdle being an above-average affair could be found in the distance between the well-regarded pair and Paul Nicholls' Dualla Lord, who finished some nine lengths further back in third.
Ifyouletmefinish (6-1) shadowed Urbain De Sivola (evens favourite) throughout the extended two miles and a furlong and pruned his lead back so much that there was nothing to split them at the line.
Jeremy Scott said of the former: "He has got better every time he has run and Cheltenham can be on the cards now. He's entered in the County Hurdle and I hope he gets in", while Nick Williams added of Urbain De Sivola: "I'm happy and the jockey was delighted. I said to his owner in August he'd finish in the first four in the Triumph and that's where he'll run."
Many would liked to have eavesdropped on the conversation between Gary and Jamie Moore ahead of the Bathwick Tyres Handicap Hurdle as Sire De Grugy was rewarded for an excellent effort just four days earlier.
Just the sort of horse with which the stable excels, Sire De Grugy (5-2 joint-favourite) finished fourth behind Zarkandar in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury and had far less on his plate here to stay on three-quarters of a length clear of Devil To Pay and Dare Me.
Jamie Moore said: "Dad thought he was an absolute certainty as he was 2lb better off than the other day, when he didn't finish far behind Zarkandar, who is the second-favourite for the Champion Hurdle. He's picked up 12 and a half grand and will probably go for the County Hurdle now."
Anthony Honeyball has not looked back since shutting his yard down for a month in December as he collected his fourth win of the fortnight in the Bathwick Tyres Bridgwater Handicap Hurdle.
Honeyball's stable had a coughing problem, but Velator (10-1) showed much improved form under the trainer's partner, Rachael Green.
The trainer said: "I think there are a few factors to this - better ground and a step up in trip particularly. When he got a handicap mark we gave him a bit of a break and it's worked." Green added: "After shutting down, we've now got a stable full of fresh horses and everything's going really well."