Canberra trainer Doug Gorrel has seen racing from varying angles, but it’s the one he is building his passion on now that he loves the most.
Gorrel has only been training for short period of time with a few racehorses in training, but has already had five winners.
One of those, Imitation Game, can add to his recent consistent form when he starts in the Forever Memories Benchmark 54 (1200m) at Goulburn on Friday. Imitation Game has been a model of consistency finishing in the top four at his past six starts.
Half of those starts have been with Gorrel who acquired the horse for a group of family friends.
Gorrel didn’t know a lot about racehorses when he started out in sports journalism, but soon became involved as a reporter, bookmaker’s clerk, clerk of the scales, owner, stable employee and finally as a trainer.
“I have always loved horses and it’s been a transition to get to where I am now as a trainer,” he said.
“I love everything about it and so far it’s been great having a few horses that have been consistent.”
Imitation Game has a win a second and a third from three starts for his new owners and Gorrel said he is living up to expectations.
“He came to me in very good order from Matt Dale who suggested he was the ideal horse for me to train,” he said.
“The horse is spot on and from barrier one I expect him to either lead or be right there and hopefully finish in the top three.”
Gorrel said it had been a little unusual in Imitation Game’s two placings at Wagga that he had been defeated by stable mates, Danetrille and Snippet Of Gold.
“Four of Imitation Game’s owners also have a share in those two horses so they can’t lose,” he joked.
“Imitation Game is doing everything we have asked of him and it doesn’t look to be an overly strong race considering that can often be the case at Goulburn.”
Gorrel turned 47 earlier in the week and agreed a win would be a fitting way to celebrate.
“The owners get a big thrill out of it and if he could win it would be great,” he said.
Gorrel’s other winners have been with Liabilityadjuster (3) and Call The Midwife and he is confident Imitation Game can go on to more wins.
“I train him and a few others in the morning before I go to work with the Public Service in Canberra,” he said.
“His two track work jockeys, Garry Kirkup and Tal Hill, feel he is spot on and they have been a big help.
“I did a couple of years helping Keith Dryden who was a big help and eventually went out on my own with a few.
“I love everything about it – especially winning.”