A MODIFIED preparation and a drop back in distance proved beneficial for Welcome Stryker, who ended an eight-month win drought at Hamilton on Tuesday.
The Bendigo-trained gelding rebounded from a disappointing Gunbower Cup effort to produce career win number five and his first since a 1600m win on Marong Cup day in February.
His trainer Danny Curran said the seven-year-old had jarred up badly at Gunbower and was aided in his recovery by a relatively new equine water-walker at the Bendigo Jockey Club.
"We're lucky we have the water-walker now at Bendigo and he was able to do a lot of work on that and that freshened him right up," he told broadcaster Racing.com
"We didn't even gallop him between (Hamilton and Gunbower), which is why he was at the 1400m.
"Every time he's been in (benchmark) 58 grades, he's been very competitive, so I was a bit surprised about the price ($14)."
Welcome Stryker was purchased by Curran on the same day as his former boom galloper The Big Dance, who won the $250,000 VOBIS Gold Rush (1000m) on debut on Golden Mile raceday at Bendigo in 2015.
A $750purchase as a yearling, The Big Dance's victory netted $172,000 for her owners, a nearly $13,000 than Welcome Stryker's total career earnings of $159,890 from 52 starts.
Welcome Stryker was well ridden by Alana Kelly, who has partnered the gelding in four of his past five starts.
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