WHILE Nick Smart will take a Listed race win any day of the week, his second Tokyo City Cup (1800m) win with Single Handed was decidedly more satisfying than his first.
The Bendigo trainer was awarded the race in 2015 with Back On Target, after the disqualification of the Robert Hickmott-trained Amralah, who was first past the post at Morphettville.
There was no such drama this time around, with Smart pulling off a brilliant training performance to land the $100,000 feature race with the five-year-old gelding, who was having just his second run back from a nine-month spell.
An exciting win was Smart's second in nine starts since relocating from Ballarat in early-August.
He kick-started life in Bendigo with a win at Murray Bridge on August 10 with Silent Command and has in the meantime racked up a pair of seconds, including one at Bendigo with Single Handed, and two fourths.
"Things are going well, I have settled in well, the horses are happy and performing well," Smart said.
"Everything is good."
Originally from South Australia, Smart headed back to his home state with a degree of confidence after Single Handed impressed with a second in a benchmark 70 at Bendigo earlier in the month behind the smart Mick Price-trained four-year-old Tavidance.
"We'll wait and see where they put his rating - I'd say he'll get a good old whack for winning," said.
"It was only 10 days between first and second-up, which is not something I would normally do.
"We'll give him a good two-and-a-half, three weeks now before he runs again.
"His run at Bendigo was a very good run, we went in there knowing we were a winning chance, so we were happy to win.
"I was probably looking for that winner (on Saturday), the horses have all been running pretty well, but since that win with Silent Command we haven't had much luck."
A $64,000 winner's purse boosted the gelding's prize earnings to $126,770 from just 10 starts.
Smart said Silent Command had trained on well since his fourth at Moonee Valley and follow up run at Cranbourne, and would be aimed at a heat of The Melbourne Cup Carnival Country Series on Hamilton Cup day (October 10).
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