By Duane Ranger
Sir Julian’s head victory at Albion Park yesterday was just the tonic Doug Brewin was looking for.
If anyone deserved a break it’s Mr Brewin. Not only has the tough Adelaide pensioner been fighting blood cancer, but his beloved passion of harness racing is in a bad way in South Australia.
His son and top South Australia trainer, Justin, has also shut up shop and this week relocated to Victoria to further his career. He joins his son Jayden, who is one of Victoria’s top junior drivers.
The State had its first harness racing event for three months at Port Pirie last Saturday night. Of course, Mr Brewin was there.
His son said nothing seemed to get him down, but admits his Dad will sorely miss attending so many trotting meetings at his beloved Globe Derby Park.
As his son puts it:
“Dad’s a fighter! Even track closures and us leaving town won’t stop him.”
“That’s why he travelled to Victoria last weekend to watch the Bendigo Trials on Monday and then last night’s meeting at Tabcorp Melton, where Jayden won the fifth event behind the Faye Gillespie trained Magic Caesar.
“In an ideal world Dad and my step-mum, Lucy, could follow us one day, but he loves Adelaide. He is taking all of his medication and regularly visits his doctors and has those commitments back home.
“It’s just a shame he can’t get chemo, because it can’t get into his lymph nodes. But Sir Julian winning yesterday was the best medicine he could ever get.
“He absolutely loves that horse. Jayden let him watch the race on the website on his phone while we were in the car yesterday. You could see the delight in his face. You can’t put a price on that,” Brewin said.
Sir Julian notched up his 31st career win in 157 starts in the $8,160 Vale Gay Dux Pace. He’s also placed 50 times and now banked $158,488 in stakes.
The Graham Dwyer (Greenbank) trained 9-year-old son of Four Starzzz Shark drew 11 (of 12), settled second last early, and was still third last at the 800 metres.
Then driver John Cremin let him go at the 750m mark, but the ‘old boy’ was still 10 metres off the lead turning for home.
Then in the lane the gutsy 9-year-old bay gelding surged home late down the outside to nail Ketut right on the line.
Sir Julian paced the 1,660 metres in 1:56.9 with a 1:53.3 mile rate. His sectionals were 26.6, 29.6, 28 even, and 29.4.
“Graham and his wife Marty, have done a wonderful job with him since he took over the training from me in June last year. He had a big fall in June this year and for Graham to get him back to where he is now is phenomenal.
“I won 20 races with him and now Graham has won 11. I can’t speak highly enough of him. I know he certainly made Dad’s day yesterday. Actually, he’s been making Dad happy for some time now. If anyone ever needed a pick-me-up it’s him,” Brewin said.
“He never ever misses watching him race,” he added.
Brewin, his wife Yvette, and his parents paid $4,000 for Sir Julian when he was a four-year-old in 2015.
“There wasn’t much left for him down here so we moved him on the Queensland where there would be better races for him. We met Graham through a friend.
“Dad’s had lots of horses going back many decades, but this fella is his best. He really perks up when Sir Julian is on the telly."
Brewin, who has trained almost 500 winners, including 250 since 2000, has also worked in the carpet and car dealership trades.
He is presently in the throws of buying a property in Victoria so he can work alongside his son.
“I’m currently working a team of 12 and we are renting in Bendigo, but buying a home and setting up in Victoria is the main objective right now.
“I have the option of going back into the carpet business again, but for now I want to make a real go of it with Jayden,” Brewin said.
Sir Julian was bred by D.J. and J.M. Howe.