Horsham trainer Paul Preusker didn’t take long to get recent stable acquisition Doctor Care back on the winners list, the seven-year-old taking Monday’s Blue Lake Handicap (1550m) at his third start for Preusker.
The Gallant Guru gelding hadn’t scored since April 2016, when he took a 2000-metre handicap at Caulfield in the care of Darren Weir.
With stable rider Holly McKechnie aboard on Monday, Doctor Care ($2.60 favourite) began well and stalked leader Knightoftherealm, who set a strong early tempo.
Doctor Care made his presence felt at the 500-metre mark, putting the acid on the pacemaker.
Doctor Care had to fight hard all the way down the straight, as local hero Evenmoreaction was finishing strongly.
In a tough display, Doctor Care dug deep to record a long-neck victory, his seventh in a 27-start career, taking his earnings tally to $203,770.
Consistent Stawell trainer Dane Smith also shared the spoils at the rescheduled Mt Gambier Cup meeting, winning the benchmark 60 over 1400 metres with Halcyon ($14).
With Jeffrey Maund in the saddle, the veteran mare box-seated just behind the speed and got the charmed run.
The daughter of Show a Heart ambled up in the straight, fighting hard for a gutsy half-length win, her fifth in 41 starts for stake money of $71,426.
Meanwhile at Terang on Monday, Stawell trainer Deanne Taylor stunned punters and recorded her first winner in almost two years when Real Finniss bolted in at $201.
In a benchmark 58 (1850m) with Kassie Furness riding, Real Finniss attracted no market interest, drifting from $101 off patchy previous form.
After a brief battle for the lead, the son of Real Saga found the front and from there dictated the race beautifully.
Rounding the home turn, Real Finniss gave a strong kick and put a space on his rivals. The seven-year-old eventually dashed away for a comprehensive three-length win.