Flying Pursuit (12-1) led his rivals a merry dance in the £50,000 Sky Bet Dash at York.
Tim Easterby's four-year-old failed to fire at Hamilton last week, but ploughed a lone furrow up the Knavesmire and could be called the winner some way from home.
Al Qahwa did his best to close the gap deep inside the last of six furlongs, but Flying Pursuit passed the post two lengths to the good under apprentice Rachel Richardson, much to the delight of the band of owners that make up the Ontoawinner syndicate.
Easterby said: "He's a good little horse, but the ground is the key to him. He loves a bit of cut.
"He was disappointing at Hamilton the other day, he just didn't race at all for whatever reason.
"Rachel gave him a good ride and we'll look towards Ayr (Gold Cup)."
Michael Dods enjoyed an across-the-card treble on Friday, including two winners at York in the evening.
The purple patch continued for the Darlington-based trainer as 4-1 shot Get Knotted landed the Win £100K For Free At sportinglife.com/pick7 Now Handicap for the second year in succession, scoring by a length and three-quarters in the hands of Paul Mulrennan.
"He's a good horse on his day and always runs well here," said Dods.
"The plan would be to go for one of the sprints up at Ayr. He was second in the Silver Cup last year and that's where he might end up again.
"That's not until September, though, so we'll try and find him something else beforehand."
The Kevin Ryan-trained Hey Jonesy (11-8), beaten just a nose into second place on his Carlisle debut a fortnight ago, went one better with an emphatic display in the Get The Sky Bet Advantage Novice Median Auction Stakes.
Ryan's son and assistant, Adam, said: "He's so straightforward. He's easy at home and easy on the track and he's turned inside out in the last two weeks.
"I can't speak for the old man, but he's in the sales race over the course and distance (Goffs Premier Yearling Conditions Stakes, August 24) and that would look an obvious target."