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Image: Steve Hart
Garner has added to an impressive recent strike rate in Melbourne

Garner has capped his first preparation with victory at Flemington on Melbourne Cup day, adding to an impressive recent strike rate in Melbourne for Adelaide trainer Gordon Richards.

Three-year-old Garner’s one-length success in Tuesday’s Schweppervescence Plate (1000m) against his own age as the $3.80 favourite was the fourth win for Richards at Flemington from his past four runners at the course.

Gytrash won twice in June before Charossa added another Flemington win for the stable in August.

Along with those victories, Garner also scored a last-stride win at Caulfield over 1000m in September before heading back to Adelaide where he had been runner-up in his most recent start over 1200m.

“The last seven I’ve brought across to Melbourne, I’ve had five winners and two seconds,” Richards said.

“That was impressive. He’s a nice little horse.

“I thought he would go well but he’s at the end of a pretty long preparation. He’s only had half a dozen starts but he’s been up for a while.

“This was not an afterthought. This is what we aimed for after he won at Caulfield. He just keeps stepping up.”

Garner charged to the front under Dwayne Dunn approaching the 100m and defeated Can’t Be Done ($5.50) with Hawker Hurricane another 1-3/4 lengths away third.

After three wins and three seconds from six starts, Garner will spell ahead of an autumn campaign.

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