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  • John Curtis


SUNDAY: November 7, 2021: BROOKE Somers celebrated a new phase in her racing career with a breakthrough season winner at Goulburn yesterday.

The Hawkesbury trainer claimed her 20th success (she has been training for only five years) when Dream Eclipse (Brendan Ward) gave his rivals a start after being slow to begin and led home a Hawkesbury quinella in the Class 1 Handicap (1200m).

There was nothing unlucky about Dream Eclipse’s 13th start when the $4.40 chance edged out Blake Ryan’s $2.70 favorite Divine Future to post his second victory.

It was also Somers’ first win since the same horse scored at Hawkesbury in May after the gelding finished a close second to odds-on favorite Verbeek in a 1400m Maiden before stewards upheld rider Andrew Gibbons’ protest for interference in the closing stages.

Somers has had only five starters in this new season, but has reduced her numbers to take on an important new role at Hawkesbury for one of Sydney’s leading trainers John O’Shea.

“RacingNSW has purchased the property previously owned by Sir Owen Glenn, and John is leasing one side of the barn with Richard and Michael Freedman taking the other side,” Somers said today.

“I worked for John at Randwick about a decade ago, and he asked me if I would look after the horses he has at Hawkesbury.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity to learn more from such an experienced trainer as John.

“We’ve got predominantly young horses, and I’m in touch with John several times a day.

“As a result of this opportunity, I have cut back to training three horses myself.”

Dream Eclipse is raced by a syndicate headed by 25-times Group 1 winning former Randwick trainer Bob Thomsen, who purchased the now Dream Ahead four-year-old after he was passed in at the 2019 Inglis Classic yearling sale.

Unfortunately, because of a golfing commitment in southern New South Wales, Thomsen missed seeing his horse’s win live.

“Bob likes to attend the races to watch Dream Eclipse but, being a keen golfer, he was on the road yesterday to the Murrumbidgee area and couldn’t make it to Goulburn,” Somers explained.

“But he would have been very pleased with the result.”

Somers is planning to find a suitable race back at the provincials for Dream Eclipse now that he has hit winning form again at his third run this preparation.

“It might not have been the strongest race, but he carried 61kg on a heavy track and gave them a start after being slow out,” she said.

“Dream Eclipse conceded the runner-up 4kg, so he showed real mettle to win.

“He will take further improvement from yesterday’s run, and, being a gelding, we’ll take him along slowly to ensure he races on for many years to come.”

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