Wagga trainer Chris Heywood and apprentice jockey Josh Richards will combine in both the Town Plate and Gold Cup after securing a place in next month's feature sprint.
Fermanagh Lad ($7.00) booked his spot in the $150,000 Wagga Town Plate (1200m) with an all-the-way victory in the $32,000 Prized Icon 2019 Wagga Town Plate Prelude (1200m) at Murrumbidgee Turf Club on Sunday.
A week after securing a place in the Wagga Gold Cup field with Class Clown's win in the Gundagai Cup, Heywood and Richards combined again to continue a great run.
Heywood landed the Plate Prelude quinella, as Fermanagh Lad fought tenaciously to hold off the fast-finishing Delivered ($41) by a nose.
Heywood was delighted with the result.
"Now I've got one in both, the Town Plate and Cup," Heywood said.
"It's awesome, absolutely awesome."
Heywood was full of praise for Fermanagh Lad, who won feature races at Moruya and Cowra in January and returned to form with a last-start second in the City Handicap at Albury.
He believes he deserves a crack at the Town Plate.
"His form's been good. His run the other day down at Albury was good. You've only got to look at him, he looks enormous. He looks absolutely magnificent," he said.
"I'm really, really happy with him.
"They've got to catch him. He makes his own luck. That makes it easy."
Richards, 24, has not yet been race riding for two years but will enter next month's Wagga carnival with a ride in both the Cup and Town Plate.
"It's going to be good," Richards said.
"I'm starting to build a good relationship with Chris (Heywood). He's a great supporter and I appreciate the opportunities he's given me."
Richards loves the way Fermanagh Lad keeps giving.
"He cruises along at a high speed and when you ask him for a bit extra in the straight, he gives it to you. He tries his guts out," he said.
Sure And Fast ($12), runner up in the 2016 Wagga Town Plate, ran third.