Comparisons to the likes of Rooster Booster and Detroit City may seem premature but Gumball looked a potential star of the future for owner Terry Warner after running riot on his British debut at Stratford.
Having finished third on his sole start in France, the Philip Hobbs-trained gelding earned a quote of 20-1 for the Triumph Hurdle with Paddy Power in landing the Get Daily Tips At racinguk.com Juvenile Hurdle by 31 lengths to form the first leg of a double for Richard Johnson..
Warner said of the 4-9 shot: "I said to Claude Charlet to buy me a horse to win the Triumph Hurdle and this is the one he come up with. Claude has done very well for me. Every horse he has bought has won a minimum of three races."
The owner added: "It is a bit ambitious to think of Cheltenham yet. We will find another little race somewhere and see what he does. He likes the soft ground. He did it well and enjoyed it."
While the career of Souriyan has taken a different path to subsequent dual Grade One winner Might Bite since the pair clashed at Cheltenham in April 2015, the six-year-old continued to make up for lost time with a seven-length victory in the All New racinguk.com Handicap Hurdle.
Trainer Peter Bowen said of the 100-30 winner: "He was a good horse as a juvenile. He just lost his way and it has taken a lot of sorting out, to be fair. We always knew the engine was there.
"He was second to Might Bite and that can't be bad. He had a wind problem and that was the major problem, although he didn't make a noise. We did his wind, gave him a break and now he has run twice and won twice.
"At least he will get into a nice race now. We might look at the Totepool Silver Trophy at Chepstow. Two and a half miles there is not too different to two-mile-six here."
Dan Skelton will look to step Sam Red (7-2) back up in class after he provided the Alcester-based handler with his 70th winner of the season when staying on well in the Watch Racing UK On The Go Novices' Chase.
Skelton said: "I ran him at the back-end of the season at Towcester over fences and the horse deserved better than me running him on quick ground. I'm not saying he will be top-class, but he might be one for the early-season better novices.
"I will probably go to Wincanton next for the Rising Stars. He will probably not go off favourite, but he deserves his chance."
QUOTE OF THE DAY
Olly Murphy ensured he kept his family happy after The Geegeez Geegee (3-1) completed Richard Johnson's double with a five-length success in the Dan Skelton Racing Handicap.
He said: "My 93-year-old grandmother has a share and she is parked down at the last fence so there is one very happy lady at Stratford."
RIDE OF THE DAY
George Blackwell refused to get drawn into an early battle aboard Global Thrill in the extended two-and-a-half-mile handicap hurdle and the move paid off, with the 7lb claimer showing good awareness to bring his mount from last to first.
PERFORMANCE OF THE DAY
It remains to be seen just what Gumball beat on his British debut, but the Philip Hobbs-trained three-year-old looked like he could be an above-average recruit to the juvenile ranks this season after making light work of his opposition.
QUIRKY MOMENT OF THE DAY
Having been the sparring partner of the now-retired Sir Anthony McCoy throughout his career, champion jockey Richard Johnson bore the surname of his once great rival on his silks aboard The Geegeez Geegee, sponsored by civil engineer contractors of the same name.