Bargain buy Happy Trails will head to the Cox Plate after an impressive win in the G1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
Happy Trails (6g Good Journey – Madame Flurry by Perugino) rolled back the clock on Saturday with a performance reminiscent of his G1 victory in the Emirates Stakes at Flemington last year. “He’s like my brother or my son, I just love him,” trainer Paul Beshara said. “He’s always been underrated and he’s never run a bad race in his life. We owe him so much.”
An $11,000 graduate of the Adelaide Magic Millions, Happy Trails is by Cornerstone Stud stallion Good Journey and is a half brother to the stakes performer Heart of a Lion (Lion Heart). He has now earned over $1.58 million.
Given a copybook ride by Dwayne Dunn, he burst through a gap in the straight to defeat more fancied rivals Puissance De Lune, Fawkner and Hawkspur in a busy finish to the Turnbull.
Beshara prepares the gelding for owners Peter and Erica Dickmann along with their son Justin, daughter in law Kim, daughter Nicole and her fiance Peter Swanell. “He’s just the most amazing horse,” a delighted Erica Dickmann said. “And Paul had him spot on today.”
Happy Trails finished a well-beaten 10th behind Ocean Park in last year’s W S Cox Plate, however, connections believe he deserves another crack at the Moonee Valley championship in three weeks. “We are having just the most incredible time,” Dickmann added. “He has a big heart and always tries his best.”
Happy Trails was bred by SATB president Brenton Park and sold through the Mill Park Stud at the 2009 Adelaide Magic Millions.