Paul Henderson's nine-year-old has reserved some of his very best efforts for this venue, filling the runner-up spot on five occasions - including in this race last year - before ending a near two-year losing run at the track last month.
With three miles and five furlongs in testing conditions facing the 10-strong field, the £26,000 feature was not for the faint hearted, but 7-4 favourite Talk Of The South showed plenty of heart in the hands of Paddy Brennan to see off the late surge of Muckle Roe by a length.
Henderson said: "The owners are delighted, so it's great.
"He obviously likes the track. He's had a hard race and was tired at the end, so we'll see how he comes out of it and go from there.
"Paddy mentioned going for the Summer Cup at Uttoxeter (July 1). I don't know if we'll keep him going that long, but he is a good mover, so I don't think heavy ground is necessarily what he needs."
Stuart Edmunds appears to be hitting form at the right time, following up the Listed success of Queenohearts at Sandown on Saturday by saddling Now Mcginty to win the E.L. Jackson Charitable Trust Handicap Hurdle.
Fitted with cheekpieces for the first time, the 5-1 shot made much of the running under Tom O'Brien and came home seven lengths clear of Virginia Chick.
Edmunds will run leading Cheltenham Festival hope Maria's Benefit in the Trull House Stud Mares' Novices' Hurdle on Thursday.
"The horses seem to be in good form, which obviously gives you confidence," said the Buckinghamshire-based trainer.
"This horse has always shown us he's a good horse at home, but he'd not shown it on the track since his first couple of runs in maiden hurdles.
"The cheekpieces look to have done the job."
Oliver Sherwood and Leighton Aspell combined to land the opening Newark Livestock Market Novices' Hurdle with Piton Pete.
The Westerner gelding - who is seen as a chasing prospect next season - was a prohibitively-priced 4-11 favourite to follow up his dominant victory at Towcester last month and fought it out well to secure a two-and-three-quarter-length verdict.
Conditional jockey Killian Moore delivered the Jonjo O'Neill-trained Timeforwest (7-2) with a well-timed challenge to emerge triumphant in the European Breeders' Fund/Thoroughbred Breeders Association Mares' Chase.
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