Lord Napier justified a big gamble in the 888Sport Heroes Handicap Hurdle, recording a nine-length victory in tough and grinding conditions at Sandown Park.
Having a ran a career best when third in the Lanzarote at Kempton, a 4lb rise seemed fair on paper on what was his first start in six months over an extended trip.
This 6yo had been crying out for further since recording a smart success at Perth at the back end of last season, and finally relocated his optimum over an extra two furlongs on Saturday.
Having sat in midfield early on, he made good progress to chase the leaders just before two-out where he then soon picked up the running.
Sean Bowen supervised his mount home having jumped the last clear and won very readily.
(Credit At The Races)