THERE'S nothing quite like winning at home and Monty's Pass' Aintree Grand National winning handler Jimmy Mangan did precisely that at the Tallow point.
The meet took place on his lands at Shanakill Cross outside the village of Conna, as he sent out clear form choice Arvicta to oblige in the closing five-year-old and upwards adjacent hunts maiden.
Arvicta (2/1) finished a more than creditable third on his previous start behind Rossbeigh Strand at Agbaullogue last month and he was waited with towards the rear of the seven-runner field until edging closer from the fifth last of the 15 obstacles.
The winning son of Arvico, sporting the silks of Hanford's Chemist Limited, was ever in the slightest danger of defeat thereafter and he ultimately accounted for the mare Trees Valley by six lengths in the hands of local Conna amateur Johnny Hurley.
"He's a fine horse that's still a bit weak and he will be a nice prospect for next year, "reported Mangan. "We will give him one more run to get experience this season and that will probably be it then for this season."
Johnny Barry similarly hails from Conna and he kept his many supporters happy by joining forces with Vincent Halley to collect the three-runner open with former Grade 2 Fortria Chase winner Arctic Skipper (4/5).
Having finished second in this same race 12 months ago, Arctic Skipper had to be rousted along in second spot after three out. Arctic Skipper however responded by leading away from the penultimate obstacle and he then stormed clear to dismiss veteran Better B Quick by three lengths.
Handler Halley said of his father Lar's Arctic Skipper: "It was a very tactical race here today and I'd imagine that he will go for another open now."
Barry was incidentally most meritoriously bringing his career tally to 150 in points aboard Arctic Skipper.
Cappoquin-based owner/trainer Jimmy Collender, who has just two horses in training at present, sent out Kilbree Warrior (2/1) to destroy the opposition in the five and six-year-old mares' maiden.
Kilbree Warrior, who was still travelling well in the lead when falling two out on her only previous start at Boulta in December, made all the running with Tom Feeey. She was well on top from two out and she ultimately dispensed with Paul Cashman's Sheer Liss by 12 lengths.
"She's a good honest mare that Tom [Feeney] rides out for us at home and were not afraid of anything coming here today," said Colleder.
"We'll get today over with and the world could be our oyster now!"
Barry O'Neill partnered two winners and the reigning champion got the ball rolling aboard Colin Bowe's debutant Glenglass (2/1) in the opening four-year-old maiden. Despite making a couple of notable jumping errors, the towering Glenglass picked up the running before the final fence to eclipse fellow Co Wexford challenger Poppa Poutine by a length.
"He's a horse with tonnes of raw ability and he showed a nice will to win there," said Bowe of Glenglass, a first Irish points winner for sire Ocovango. "We bought him at the Derby sale last year and he will now go to a sale."
O'Neill doubled up aboard Richard Black's Zihuatanejo (5/4) in the six-year-old and upwards geldings' maiden.
Zihuatanejo, absent since finishing second to the smart Champagne Platinum at Quakerstown in April 2018, benefited from frontrunning tactics by making virtually all the running to deny the previous Sunday's Ballyvodock runner-up Rwegoinhigh by one and a half lengths. Zihuatanejo represents Gorey hotelier Paddy Redmond, who previously sampled top-flight success as an owner courtesy of Colm Murphy's Big Zeb.
Recite A Prayer (8/1), trained by Michael Murphy in south Co Wexford, made amends for pulling up on his debut at Dromahane on December 30 by asserting from two out with Tiernan Roche to see-off the only other finisher Sunset West by 12 lengths in the five-year-old geldings' maiden.
Next Sunday, the annual Avondhu meeting takes place at Knockanard outside Fermoy with a planned 1pm start.