Battle Group and Brendan Powell jump to success in the day one finalePICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)
Powell notches day one double on Battle Group
Report: Aintree, Thursday
Silver Cross Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 3m½f, 4yo+
CONDITIONAL Brendan Powell scored a sensational first day double when Battle Group romped to a ten-length victory over fellow 8-1 co-favourite Jetson.
The 17-year-old had earlier won the Red Rum Handicap Chase on Oiseau De Nuit, which was his first success at this meeting, and showed all the same fearlessness he had on that chaser.
Powell said: "Turning in, still travelling, I thought surely I couldn't have two winners today.
"He's a quirky horse I spoke to the lads who have ridden said he'd be a bit keen so I dropped him in and had planned to wait until the second-last to take it up.
"I took it up way too early really. In hindsight even getting there at the second-last was too early."
The double makes him the leading rider of the meeting so far with no other jockey riding more than one winner.
Veteran Oiseau De Nuit on his way to Red Rum Chase glory at AintreePICTURE: Martin Lynch (racingpost.com/photos)
Matalan.co.uk Red Rum Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 2m, Milmay course, 5yo+
OISEAU DE NUIT finally bettered his 2011 second, carrying rising star Brendan Powell to a first win at the John Smith's Grand National meeting.
The 20-1 shot powered clear of the pack after the last to beat fellow 20-1 shot Tanks For That by five lengths, with Kie one and a half lengths further back in third and Kings Grey filling fourth spot.
Powell said: "Mr Tizzard has been exceptional to me and this really is the icing on the cake in an unbelievable season for me after getting my first Cheltenham Festival winner last month."
Trainer Colin Tizzard added of Oiseau De Nuit: "He's been stuck in the mud all winter so I suppose he handicapped himself and he's come good on the good ground, as he always does.
"He's a young man's ride and Brendan has given him a superb ride. There was no way he was going to let him go short at the last."