Champagne Mahler recorded a game front-running performance to land the opening Langtons Kilkenny Handicap Hurdle at Gowran Park this afternoon.
The Henry de Bromhead-trained gelding had disappointed at Cork last month and dropped back to two miles this afternoon.
Darragh O'Keeffe gave the 14/1 shot a positive ride and he was in control going to the last when getting that final flight wrong.
The Mahler gelding galloped on strongly on the run-in to post a six-and-a-half length win over Kilbarry Saint Benjis Benefit was backed into 4/6 for the race but after travelling strongly turning for home he found little from the second last and could only finish fourth.
"I was disappointed with him in Cork but he obviously struggled with the trip,” said de Bromhead.
“We initially thought he was crying out for a (longer) trip but dropped him back today. He loved the ground, jumped really well and I'd say we just went too far at Cork and that seems confirmed now.
"He is a fine big horse, a real chaser and I'm delighted for the English-based BM Partnership as it's our first winner for them although unfortunately they're not here today."