Another One primed for another tilt at Country Champs

Nick Heywood drives Another One to victory in the 2021 SDRA Country Championships qualifier at Wagga. The pair will be looking for the same result on Saturday for Wagga trainer Gary Colvin. Photo: Trackpix Racing Photography.

The Gary Colvin-trained Another One took connections on the ride of a lifetime in 2021, winning the Southern Districts Racing Association (SDRA) $150,000 qualifier at Wagga before finishing second in the $500,000 Country Championships final in April when beaten only 0.5 of a length by the Terry Robinson-trained Art Cadeau. 

Trained in Wagga by Gary Colvin, the four-year-old is owned by racing enthusiasts from all over the Riverina.

More success could be on the cards too, with Another One again contesting the Country Championships, with his 2022 campaign set to commence on Saturday when jumping as one of the favourites in the SDRA qualifier at Wagga.

In a promising sign for connections, Colvin believes his Super One gelding is going better than ever. 

“I think he is going better than last year,” Colvin said. 

“He is more mature. Last year, he was a bit immature, and that’s why he nearly lost the qualifier.

“He is starting to relax in races. He has the blinkers on and that should sharpen him up a bit and he was a three-year-old last year and he nearly won it and he should only be better for it.”

Colvin was pleased with Another One’s preparation, with the Wagga galloper heading into the 1400m race 21 days between runs. 

“I couldn’t be happier with him; he is stronger and more matured,” Colvin said. 

“He has done well. He had a spell, and then we tried him over a bit of ground, and he went okay in Sydney, and he had no problem getting a mile and he ran well over 1800m, but I thought the Country Champs was there, so we kept him for that. 

“He has been working well and he breaks 34 (seconds) over 600m each time we gallop him and I’m happy because we have had no interruptions this preparation.

“There are no excuses, and we are pretty calm, and when things go right, you seem a bit calmer and I’m just really happy with everything so far and we are looking forward to it.” 

Another One is currently on the fourth line of betting for the Country Championships series, with multiple bookmakers quoting $11 before Saturday’s Wagga qualifier 

Colvin wanted to avoid any talk of favouritism and expectations to make the final though, with the stable’s focus firmly fixed on Another One finishing in a top-two position on Saturday.

“Don’t worry, there are a couple of nice local horses; It is going to be a hard race to win,” Colvin said. 

“The only thing I’m worried about is Wagga. I’m just focused on trying to finish first or second and to make the final.”

In a thrilling finish to the 2021 SDRA qualifier, Another One flew from the clouds to win and Colvin hopes jockey Nick Heywood can find a closer position on Saturday and repeat the effort.

“Last year, he got back, and got a bit of cover and had to go around a couple of horses and flew home but we know we need to be a bit more positive this year,’ Colvin said.

“We just hope to get a decent draw, but in these big fields, you have to have a bit of luck too and we just hope he can get through again.”

The Murrumbidgee Turf Club qualifier is filled to the brim with in-form Riverina horses such as Mnementh, Halo Warrior, Blitzar and Tap ‘N’ Run and Colvin said he couldn’t pick any one runner as a standout to win the race.

“I won’t pick anything out, because you have to beat them all,” Colvin said. 

“I can’t pick one to beat because there are a lot of good chances.”

Final fields for the SDRA Country Championships qualifier meeting at Wagga will be published on Thursday morning and readers can click here to view nominations for the eight-race-program.