I like the second list as well--that tank-based armor section is similar to one I use, and is practically guaranteed to do well. Mine doesn't usually have FS, but the ability to include the Manticore rounds out the section perfectly.
Yeah the Manticores are a great model. They can deal with hard targets as well as fill the roll of anti-soft. In my super secret Adonesse Invasion Army I use a hornet instead of the manticore.