Caloundra trainer Stuart Kendrick put aside a disappointment early in the day to produce another promising young horse at Doomben.
Kendrick got his second long-priced winner in a week when Soldiers ($21) beat Couldn’t Refuse ($1.70) by a short head in a Maiden Plate (1350m).
The day started poorly for Kendrick when he had to scratch his Group One performer Eric The Eel, who had a poor blood count.
“His blood indicated he might be fighting off something so we didn’t want to risk him,” Kendrick said.
“He can have a trial next week and then go to Doomben on Saturday week.”
But things brightened considerably when the New Zealand-bred Soldiers improved lengths on his first start to emerge as a possible smart horse.
Soldiers races in the colours of Glen and Lisa Morton who bred him from the Australian Derby-winning stallion Nom Du Jeu.
They also bred and raced another Nom Du Jeu horse in Ted who was sold to Hong Kong where he raced as Ping Hai Star and won the Group One Derby.
“Soldiers has been a real problem child but we gave him a good long spell and he has started to live up to the early opinion we had of him,” Kendrick said.
It was been a good start to the season for Kendrick who has had nine winners including I Dream Of Green at $21 at Doomben last Saturday.