Fakir D'oudairies was a convincing winner of the Grade One Marsh Chase at Aintree for Joseph O'Brien.
In a race registered as the Melling Chase, O'Brien's six-year-old added his name to the list of famous previous winners.
Jockey Mark Walsh challenged widest of four as the main contenders bunched into the straight - and there was no doubt eventual runner-up Nuts Well came off worst when space got very tight on the inside.
Fakir D'oudairies, who was pulled out of an initial engagement at Fairyhouse at the start of the week because of quick ground and was second to runaway Ryanair winner Allaho at Cheltenham, was nonetheless emphatic in victory.
As Nuts Well and Danny McMenamin regathered momentum, and switched wide themselves, the winner was gone - well clear at the last on the way to an 11-length success as the 2-1 favourite.
The winning jockey said afterwards: "We went a good gallop, and I was happy with him.
"Joseph and Frank (Berry, owner JP McManus' racing manager) said to me this morning, 'just ride him with a bit of light and he'll jump better' - he jumped brilliant the whole way.
"This lad deserves his day in the sun. He's been running savage races all year without getting his head in front - and he deserves it today."
O'Brien reflected on Fakir D'oudairies' deserved second Grade One success, when saying: "We're delighted with his win. Mark gave him a great ride - he jumped great and got into a great rhythm today.
"He's been a very consistent performer for us, and deserves another Grade One.
"He's been running against the best of the best, and always runs his race. We're very proud of his win today.
"He was to run at Fairyhouse on Monday. He was at the track, and we weren't happy with the ground. It's a touch of luck we sent him to Aintree instead."
Fakir D'oudaires may yet run again this season - but that decision will be made in due course.
"We'll have a look at Punchestown," added O'Brien. "We'll see how he comes home first - it's a decision for next week. We'll get today out of the way and go from there."
Aintree observed a two-minute silence in tribute to Prince Philip, following his death at the age of 99, before the Grand National-winning team of Lucinda Russell and Derek Fox teamed up at Aintree once more to win the Grade One Doom Bar Sefton Novices' Hurdle with Ahoy Senor at 66-1.
Having just his second start over hurdles, having won at Ayr last month, Ahoy Senor made every yard of the running.
As his challengers dropped away one by one in the straight there was only the favourite, Paul Nicholls' Bravemansgame, who brought the strongest form to the table, able to get close before the final flight.
Ahoy Senor was not for stopping, though, and the lightly-raced six-year-old went away again on the run-in to score by seven lengths and his future looks very bright.
Fox, who won the 2017 National with the Russell-trained One For Arthur, said: "It’s unbelievable as he’s only had the one run over hurdles before.
"He works so well at home and everyone thinks a lot of him. I’m delighted.
"He’s a very talented horse. He does everything with so much ease and he’s a pleasure to ride – I’m very lucky to be on him."
Livelovelaugh turned the Randox Topham Handicap Chase into a procession for Patrick and Willie Mullins.
Having set off at what seemed a particularly brisk pace in the early stages, Livelovelaugh had burned everything else off crossing the Melling Road.
Mullins had got his mount into a fantastic rhythm, but when the pursuers began to close up as the field raced back on to the racecourse proper, it was a question of how much was going to be left in the tank.
The 11-year-old briefly looked in trouble – but Mullins had saved plenty on the 15-2 shot and put the race to bed approaching the Elbow.
Livelovelaugh had run in the Grand National itself two years ago and looked a non-stayer in 11th behind Tiger Roll.
Pink Eyed Pedro was second at 33-1, four and a half lengths away, with Senior Citizen third and Snugsborough Hall fourth.
Mullins, who replaced the injured Paul Townend, was emulating his father, who won over the fences aboard the Paddy Mullins-trained Atha Cliath in 1983 Foxhunters.
He steps in for Townend again in the Rich and Susannah Ricci colours on Burrows Saint in the big one on Saturday.
Chantry House took full advantage of the exit of Espoir De Romay to land victory in the Betway Mildmay Novices' Chase at Aintree.
The Marsh Novices’ Chase winner from Cheltenham was two lengths down approaching the second-last when Kim Bailey’s long-time leader crumpled on landing.
That left the 11-8 favourite a long way clear of Shan Blue and he went on to provide Nicky Henderson and Nico de Boinville with a welcome winner having drawn a blank at the meeting up to then.
Espoir De Romay had set a fair gallop out in front, with David Bass getting some great leaps out of his mount.
He looked to be travelling the better of the two, with Bass still yet to really ask a serious question while De Boinville was hard at it, only for Espoir De Romay to come down.
There were some big disappointments, with the Colin Tizzard pair of The Big Breakaway and Fiddlerontheroof never figuring and Sporting John pulling up.
Shan Blue travelled well before his stamina gave out before three out. He was beaten 32 lengths in second.
The winner was left unchanged at 20-1 by Paddy Power for next year’s Gold Cup, while Espoir De Romay was introduced at 33-1.
Jack Kennedy weaved his way through expertly on Tronador to land the Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle at Aintree.
The lightly-raced five-year-old was the only runner trained in Ireland – by Denise Foster – among the 22-strong field for the opening race on day two of the Grand National meeting, and his victory showed the travelling contingent's domination at the Cheltenham Festival is not letting up.
In the middle of the pack early, Tronador – who was very weak in the betting, going off 22-1 after being 8-1 overnight – found himself outpaced early in the straight.
A slow jump three from home did not help his cause, but suddenly he began to pass horses.
Long-time leader Kateson was still in front jumping the last – but Tronador landed with momentum and sprinted clear to beat Dans Le Vent by two and a half lengths, with Edwardstone running on for third.
Rowland Ward benefitted from the fitting of a first-time tongue tie to win the closing Pinsent Masons Handicap Hurdle for Stuart Edmunds.
The race changed markedly in complexion at the second-last flight when the strongly-fancied Copperless, who appeared to be going as well as anything else, took a crashing fall.
Henry de Bromhead’s Bold Enough had just about given his best, leaving Camprond in the lead, but Rowland Ward was produced beautifully by Charlie Hammond.
It took longer than it was maybe expected for him to wear down his rival, but the 12-1 shot won by half a length from the 9-2 favourite.