CHIPPING Norton trainer Charlie Longsdon put Killala Quay’s return to form down to a breathing operation after the gelding’s thrilling victory at Doncaster.

Pulled up on his three previous starts this term when he lost a shoe at Chepstow before hanging badly at Ascot and Sandown, the ten-year-old was five lengths down on Ericht going over the last fence in a three-mile veterans’ handicap chase.

But with the leader treading water on the run-in, Killala Quay got home by a head from Saint Are under Aidan Coleman, with a neck back to Ericht in third.

Longsdon said of the 5-1 shot: “It is great to see him back in the winner’s enclosure after a short break for a wind operation.”

Graceful Legend completed a hat-trick of wins for Ben Case’s Edgcote stables, near Banbury, with a half-length success in a mares’ handicap hurdle over an extended two and a quarter miles at Exeter.

Mark Bradstock sent out Step Back from his Letcombe Bassett yard, near Wantage, to make a winning debut under National Hunt rules at Ludlow.

Seas Of Green regained the winning thread for Paul Cowley’s Culworth yard, near Banbury, with an easy 13-lengths success in a handicap hurdle over an extended two miles and five furlongs at Fontwell.

Aston Rowant trainer Alan Hill and his jockey son, Joe, teamed up to strike with Man Of Steel, who ploughed through Lingfield’s heavy ground to beat Big Fella Thanks by three lengths in a two-and-a-half-mile hunters’ chase.

On the Flat, Idol Deputy continued his love affair with Wolverhampton to give Letcombe Bassett trainer James Bennett a first winner of 2017 by recording his 12th course success – and 13th career victory.

At Wolverhampton, Hook Norton trainer Peter Hiatt posted his first winner of the year when Iona Island opened her account by springing an 18-1 surprise in a mile-and-three-quarters handicap.

And Edgcote trainer Alex Hales, better known for his National Hunt horses, recorded his first Flat winner for four years on the same card when Dandilion was given a well-timed ride by Callum Shepherd to pip Cruise Tothelimit by a short head in a five-furlong handicap.