Goodwin likely to go Again at Flemington
For the second weekend in a row, Never Again is likely to be presented with a chance to provide emerging trainer Reece Goodwin with a career highlight.
The eight-year-old who last Saturday became Goodwin's first city winner is in line to be the Pakenham horseman's first Stakes runner in the $175,000 Listed JRA Trophy at Flemington.
But, like last Saturday, Goodwin won't be there to soak it up if he does win.
The 25-year-old watched last weekend's win from the Wangaratta meeting, where he had two runners, leaving his father Barry to steer the ship at Sandown and that will again be the scenario if Never Again does run at Flemington.
"As long as the horses are winning it doesn't bother me if I'm not there and, to be honest, it's going to be the same again this week as I'm going to have one in at Yea and that's where I'll be," Goodwin said.
Never Again's recovery from Saturday's win was what prompted Goodwin to nominate the son of High Chaparral for Flemington with a decision on whether he backs up in the 2600-metre event likely to be made at the back end of the week.
"He's got to do well during the week, but at this stage we'll accept and take it from there," he said.
The maiden city victory was the latest chapter in a story of success for Goodwin, who only had his first starter in March this year and in that time has prepared 11 horses to win 14 races, most of whom started their career in other stables.
Goodwin paid $19,000 for Never Again, who had won seven of 38 starts for Clinton Mcdonald before joining Goodwin, midway through the year.
Never Again did not race beyond 1600m for McDonald and last Saturday's 2400m benchmark 78 win was his first start in a race further than 2000 metres and Goodwin said the performance forced him to put more thought into what the future might hold.
"To be honest, I haven't done a whole lot of planning with him because it was only five runs ago that he won a benchmark 64 at Sale," Goodwin said.
"But now that he has won over the 2400, it opens up a heap of options for him and probably keeps him in the stable for longer."
The Listed Bagot Handicap (2800m) at Flemington on New Year's Day shapes as an option if he runs out Saturday's distance well with the $250,000 Group 3 Hobart Cup (2400m) in February another option.