Annie Mc landed back-to-back victories in Listed company, as she saw off some tough opposition to win the Lady Protectress Mares’ Chase at Warwick.
The seven-year-old made strong headway in the closing stages before taking the lead after the last fence to overcome Zambella by 5 ½ lengths.
Trainer Jonjo O’Neill made no secret after the race that the new Mares’ Chase at the Cheltenham Festival is now the primary target, with her price being clipped from 18/1 to 14/1.
Second place Zambella, who was unbeaten over fences before this meeting, saw her price for the maiden contest bump up from 18/1 to 25/1.
Later on the card, The Willoughby De Broke Open Hunters’ Chase produced a thriller with 40/1 shot Latenightpass fending off late challenges from two potential Cheltenham contenders.
Both caught the eye in the final stages of the contest, as Highway Jewel made up plenty of ground after the final fence and could have won it with 50 yards more, while Olly Murphy’s The Worlds End made progress late on to secure third.
Highway Jewel has seen his price shortened from 25/1 to 16/1 for the Foxhunters’ Chase, while The Worlds End has gone back out to 16/1 from 12/1.