THE tears that flowed trackside following Anything You Touch’s win at Queanbeyan on Saturday told the story that this was no ordinary salute.
Not only was the comfortable four-length victory the three-year-old filly’s maiden win, it was also a first victory for a clearly emotional local trainer Julie Ceely.
A former trackwork rider, Ceely has been training racehorses for the past 10 years out of her Burra property but until Saturday, had never trained a winner.
“I knew she’d go close to winning it but to be honest I thought she was only 95 per cent fit,” Ceely said in the aftermath of Anything You Touch’s superb run in the Hotel Queanbeyan three-year-old maiden plate (900m).
“I just thought I’d put her in the 900m as a bit of a barrier trial really to see how fit she was and she went out and won it.”
The victory continued Anything You Touch’s rapid progression in her first preparation having placed in both her previous two runs at Canberra.
While Anything You Touch is the best galloper to have come through Ceely’s operation, the trainer admitted she had almost missed out on her opportunity to pick up the big chestnut.
“I was interested in buying a horse and I was looking around on the internet and I saw this two-year-old filly [Anything You Touch] who’d been passed in at the yearling sales,” she said.
“She was out of my price range though so I kept looking at other horses but I just kept flicking back to those photos of this stunning looking filly.
“Eventually my husband just said put in a silly offer and see how you go so I did and the next day I got a call saying they were happy to accept. For the quality she is, she was a very cheap filly.”
Ceely said she was yet to confirm where the filly would step out next but would likely target the Country Plate for three-year-olds at Canberra’s Thoroughbred Park on February 8.