AFTER several years away from training Warren Marriott's win at Kennerson Park on Friday evening felt that extra bit special.
Marriott was thrilled to watch Winlock Hondo ($11) snare an upset win in the Book Trials 5pm Day Prior to Session (307 metres) at the Bathurst track, capitalising on the rest of the field's misfortune to claim a sixth career win.
Winlock Hondo was given to Marriott by the dogs previous connections in order to help him get back into the racing game, and that's something he's incredibly thankful for.
"I had dogs for about 30 years but I've been sick for the last few years and this one is my first runner back," he said.
"I'm very grateful to Graham Smith, the previous trainer, who recommended me having him, and the previous owner, Gus Weekes, who was willing to give him to me as well.
"He's my dog now, to try and get back started again.
"He's a slow beginner so I was grateful when he came out well tonight. It's so important for them to get out like that."
Winlock Hondo and Deposit Taken, from boxes seven and one respectively, were the two clear best starters in Friday night's race.
Favourite Subzero Stallone quickly came over from box eight to join them, as did Aqua Panther.
The group of four became tightly bunched up as the turn for home approached and it was evident that something had to give.
All four became tangled up and Deposit Taken clipped the back of Subzero Stallone's heels, sending the pair back to the rest of the field, and they impeded Aqua Panther in the process.
That helped Winlock Hondo quickly put up four lengths on the rest of the field but there was still plenty of work to be done.
Winlock Hondo drifted wide on the turn but he did well to maintain his speed and score a 5.25m success.
Death Valley ($17, Tania Trappett) and Rain's Delight ($4, Pamela Braddon) completed the unlikely trifecta after the original front runners were knocked out of the contest.
There will be no racing at Kennerson Park over the coming week.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content: