Lightning struck twice to defy the odds and reward a rapt group of owners and Cranbourne trainer-driver Scott Ewen at Melton on Saturday night.
Stable star Bulletproof Boy’s Victorian toil has begun to reap significant rewards, translating extraordinary success in South Australia with consecutive victories in his adopted state.
Having broken through in the Sportswriter Breeders Crown Graduate Cup at $60.70 on the tote, Bulletproof Boy was only a slightly skinnier $45.60 when the gate’s opened in Saturday’s TAB Blacks A Fake Free For All.
But, as he had down the week previous, Bulletproof Boy crashed the line late to upstage more fancied front runners and record a 26th career victory.
“He’s just a good eater, good doer and he loves work, and he loves to race and he loves winning,” Ewen told Trots Vision post-race.
“He’s a gem. He had a lot of trouble breaking into the racing over here, because in Adelaide he was just way too good for them.”
“He was pulling and doing things wrong and overracing, it took him a while but he’s settled, he’s working good. Last week, I gave him a big chance even though he was big odds, it’s a long way home from (gate) 11 but he did the job for us.
“I thought tonight he was a big chance. I did think they’d cough up five or six-to-one, but he’s 20-to-one again. Hey, if you want to dish them out that’s fine by us, but I think he’s a nice little horse.”
In fact he was twice those odds, though he looked anything but a long-shot late in the piece.
Arden Voyager led for Kate Gath and kept the pace ticking over, with Sicario and then Out To Play sitting to his outside while Bulletproof Boy lay in wait three back on the outside.
Ewen advanced three wide into the final turn and while the leaders tired he crashed the line, winning by 2.6 metres ahead of fast finishing Bettor Be The Bomb, who was an eye-catching second having struggled for a run and then poked through late.
Those loyal to the winner had good reason to smile, whether it be the generous winning price, the trifecta ($1286), the first 4 ($3719) or the quaddie ($16,181).
“I’m a good boy and I don’t bet, but someone’s made money and I hope the owners have made money, they did last week, so hopefully they’ve followed up,” Ewen said.
The nine-member ownership group has good reason to smile, having only bought into the horse in April.
“He won that 20-grand race and now he’s won two races since, he double paid for himself and all the new owners have just had a great time,” Ewan said. “I said to them, interest in the bank, if you get on board he will do you well. He’ll pay his way and earn money. The horse is just a great horse.”
By Michael Howard
Photo; Stuart McCormick Photography