Lark In The Morning defied his own connections worries about ground conditions to take the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle in impressive fashion.

Trained by Joseph O'Brien and ridden by his cousin JJ Slevin, the son of Soldier Hollow was kept wide on the run down the hill, took it up on the turn in and went away after the last for a two-length score over Eagles Reign, who ran a fine race for Ross O'Sullivan at odds of 80/1.

Joseph O’Brien said: “We were very worried about the rain, as we had a pretty strong view that he wanted better ground to be seen to best effect, but I thought that ‘JJ’ gave him a fantastic ride and found the best of the ground all the way around. He had plenty in the locker jumping the last, then pricked his ears.

“We thought that he was coming here with a real live chance, but so much rain fell last night that we had a conversation about whether we’d run or not. Luckily we did, and he seemed to handle it.

“I’m delighted for Sean, for Paddy and for Bernadine, and for JJ to have a winner here this week. It’s very special.”

JJ Slevin said: “Obviously he kind of got stuck in the ground at home all winter and probably didn’t perform to his best, so we were worried coming here. But I got a spin around on Colonel Mustard earlier and thought it didn’t ride as bad as it walked. We had to let him take his chance after that.

“Joseph did say to me, ‘be patient and maybe try to grab some fresh ground’, which is what I tried to do.

“Joseph has plenty of quality in his yard and he does a good job with them [his fairly small team of jumpers], so when he has the right one, he sends them over.

“I thought the chase track rode slower than the hurdle track, so we just have to hope [ahead of Bambridge’s run in the Ryanair Chase on Thursday] that it doesn’t rain too much.”

Ross O’Sullivan, trainer of the runner-up Eagles Reign said: “Great run. The owner has been coming here for the past 15 years. He’s a horse who has surprised us all year, and he just said he’d love to have a runner here. He’s never had a runner here. He comes over with a bunch of pals every year, and to have his runner and to finish second, he’s on cloud nine - it’s as good as winning.

“He’s a progressive horse; he’s tough. He was only a cheap horse, didn’t cos

4.50pm Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Premier Handicap) 2m 87y

1 Lark In The Mornin 9-1

2 Eagles Reign 80-1

3 Ndaawi 12-1

4 Harsh 40-1