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Martin’s despair turns to Group One dream

Tim Martin was at trackwork when the vet called to tell him one of his mares was suffering from colic after giving birth.

Armed with the treatment, the trainer spent his Saturday afternoon trying to save her.

“It wasn’t working so I rushed her into Camden (vet hospital) and she had to be euthanised,” Martin said.

“I got home at 11pm on Saturday night and Sunday morning I picked the orphan foal up and I was feeding it every three hours.”

The Fast ‘N’ Famous colt was saved and continues to thrive.

Fast forward to a week after the mare’s death and her younger brother Moral Victory won at Rosehill on September 10, the same day Heavens Above took out the Group Three Sheraco Stakes.

It was Martin’s first metropolitan double in three years.

“It was quite a tough week so it was good to get a result,” Martin said.

Martin hopes the pair can continue the turnaround on Saturday with Heavens Above in the $400,000 Golden Pendant (1400m) and Moral Victory in the Group Two Shannon Stakes (1500m).

Heavens Above’s target remains the Group One Epsom Handicap at Randwick on October 1.

Her quick recovery after the Sheraco convinced Martin to run Heavens Above on Saturday and back her up in the Epsom a week later.

She will face the John Thompson-trained First Seal who is looking to restart her career which has been dogged by setbacks after having the wood over Winx as a three-year-old.

“We respect First Seal and at the top of her game she’s as good as Winx,” Martin said.

“I’m hoping that she’s a little bit vulnerable first-up on Saturday and we’re at the top of our game.”

First Seal’s stablemate Zanbagh is in the 10-horse field along with Peter and Paul Snowden-trained pair Serene Majesty and Tycoon Tara, who is in a rich vein of form.

The Ron Quinton-trained mare Dixie Blossoms was an unlucky 12th in the Sheraco and looms as another leading hope for the Golden Pendant.

In the Shannon, seven-year-old gelding Moral Victory carries the Martin stable’s hopes.

“He had surgery in his joints and required time and is starting to putting it all together now,” Martin said.

“He’s always shown really good ability.”

Both horses are flying the flag for a resurgent Martin, who almost gave away training and scaled back his team to focus on educating young horses at his farm outside Sydney.

Seven days after she runs in the Group Two Golden Pendant, Heavens Above will give him the chance to win his first Group One race since 2009 in the $1 million Epsom.

“A week is a long time in racing,” Martin said.

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