ANOTHER One became the first horse to go back-to-back in a heat of the Country Championships with an impressive victory at Wagga on Saturday.
Wagga jockey Nick Heywood produced a brilliant tactical ride to steer Another One ($2.50) to a memorable win in the $150,000 SDRA Country Championships Qualifier (1400m) at Murrumbidgee Turf Club.
Heywood took advantage of Another One jumping well and went further forward than expected on the four-year-old, then hit the front of the top of the straight and went for home.
Another One booted a couple of lengths clear and cruised home to score by a half length from the fast-finishing Tap N Run ($5.00), who also booked his ticket to the $500,000 final at Randwick.
Race leader Gusonic ($19) was four lengths back in third.
Another One created history by becoming the first horse to win two heats of the Country Championship and Wagga trainer Gary Colvin could not have been prouder of his horse.
"I'm very happy. We were pretty confident everything was right with him," Colvin said.
"When everything's right you seem to relax a bit more and the way he went, I was really happy. Coming to the corner, I know the horse, he was nice and relaxed, he was just jogging. He had plenty of horse under him and thought I better get going.
"They weren't coming from behind so it was a smart ride. We were a bit worried, we said what we do we do here. I said just get him where he's relaxed and he went bang."
Heywood gave all credit to the horse.
"It's hard to win one, let alone two," Heywood said.
"He was the complete horse today. He put himself on pace and from then onwards, it was going to take a good one to run him down. Full credit to the second horse, he went super. He's stepping up as well and they will both be very hard to beat in the final.
"He's very versatile. He was ready today. Usually when he works like that, you don't move, you've got a lapful of horse and he was just steaming and I thought it's going to take a good one to run him down, they're going to have to run 32 (seconds) to beat him."
Colvin confirmed Heywood will retain the ride for the final for a second straight year.
Another One ran second last year and Colvin cannot see any reason why he won't be in the finish again.
He also paid credit to his staff for their work in getting Another One to go back-to-back.
"It's good for everyone because it's not just me, the staff, jockey, everyone, it's a team effort," he said.
"If your team works well, your horses run well."
The Chris Heywood-trained Blitzar finished fourth.
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