Midnight Diamond had not raced under rules for over three years but has been kept busy between the flags recently by Jonathan Phillips and he made a winning return to action at Fakenham yesterday under Richard Johnson.

Though his jumping was a little deliberate at times in what proved to be an incident-packed race, he made most of the running and came home clear after his main rival fell at the second last.

It was his first win under rules over the larger obstacles at the 16th attempt but, providing the handicapper doesn’t overreact, he should make a bold bid to follow up next time.

Our two other runners on the day, Mist The Boat (finished runner-up) and The Omen (third), both ran well in defeat and they fully deserve to get their heads in front soon.