Richard Freedman has rolled back the racing years, training a winner at Canterbury.
An integral part of the Freedman stable that dominated Australian racing in the 1990s, Freedman has spent the intervening years working in the media as well as administration
But he is back in the training business, celebrating the first success of his return when Forever Dream won the Bowermans Office Furniture Plate at Canterbury on Wednesday.
Forever Dream improved from last in the four-horse field, scooting clear in the 1100m race to win by 1-3/4 lengths to justify his $2.70 favouritism with CrownBet.
It was Freedman’s first winner since King’s Minstrel scored at Kilmore in Victoria in November, 1997.
“It’s like the old days, I did get a buzz out of that,” he said.
“He’s a lovely sort of horse, he’s got ability.”
Freedman, who previously trained in partnership with brothers Anthony, Lee and Michael, took out a licence again last August and now has nine horses in work at Hawkesbury.
He inherited some of his brother Michael’s team when he left for Hong Kong last month.
“It’s a good little team effort, as it is always is with any horse you train,.” Freedman said.
“It doesn’t matter if you train a string of 200 or a string of 12. It’s the same. It’s a team effort,” he said, noting the assistance of son William.
Forever Dream is Freedman’s 11th starter since he upgraded from pre-training in March and the three-year-old is the pick of his stable.
“He does have a turn of foot and that’s what’ll take him as far as he will go,” Freedman said.
“I think he’s a Saturday-class horse but we’ll just have to wait and see.”
Forever Dream beat Can I Dream ($4.40) with Ennui ($3.30) taking the minor placing.
Darren Beadman trained a double at his first metropolitan day on the job for Godolphin.
Malahat gave the former champion jockey his first victory as a trainer and his double came up when Bratislava scored a last-stride victory in the final event.