By Julieanne Horsman
When Nick Mitchell established his Hawkesbury stables in late 2013 after relocating from Japan, he had just two horses in his care.
Radical Impact was his first runner and with Grant Buckley aboard, the gelding finished 3rd in the Yarraman Park Class 1 Handicap (1200m) at Scone on 24 Jan 2014.
Nick Mitchell had opened his Australian account.
Fast forward three years and Radical Impact and Grant Buckley will again team up for a shot at the $35,000 Bill Aspros Cup (1200m) at Bathurst on Friday.
“Grant knows the horse really well and has won on him twice in the last four months,” Mitchell said.
“From that gate (12) he is going to have to jump and let him roll.
“Hopefully he will get one out one back but if they are going really fast he will have to drop back.
“I trust Grant to take the best course of action though.”
Radical Impact is coming off a last start 3rd in the Benchmark 72 TAB Sprint at Royal Randwick on 26 December 2016.
He travelled three wide with no cover but finished only a half a length behind winner Waitandwatch who is unbeaten in his last four starts.
“That was a good run and I was happy to see him trying hard all the way,” Mitchell said.
This time he will carry 4.5kgs less and Mitchell is confident he will be competitive.
“He’s an on pace horse and with weight relief he should do well,” Mitchell said.
“The heavy weight gives hell in last 200m.”
Mitchell concedes Radical Impact has been tricky to train at times but thinks he has him figured out now.
He keeps the seven year-old gelding happy by restricting track work, instead doing dressage, a bit of jumping and swimming in the river.
“My stablehand Katie Collins does a fantastic job with Radical Impact,” Nick said.
“She does all the track work and has trained him in equestrian.
“They even competed together successfully and came second against a tough field.
“Katie has been with me since I opened my Hawkesbury stables and I’m grateful to have her on my team.”
Radical Impact is also nominated for Randwick tomorrow but Mitchell is almost certain he will scratch him and go to Bathurst instead.