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Small-time punter pockets big All-Star win

Ballarat resident Damien Murnane has never considered himself a big punter but he has landed the biggest win of his life at Flemington.

Murnane pocketed $250,000 courtesy of Mystic Journey’s victory in the $5 million All-Star Mile at Flemington.

The 59-year-old was one of 14 owner ambassador chosen to represent each horse in Saturday’s inaugural running of the All-Star Mile.

The public was given the chance to vote for their favourite horse with the highest 10 gaining a start along with four wild card entries.

Murnane voted for Moss ‘N’ Dale but with Mystic Journey gaining a berth into Saturday’s race following her Australian Guineas win on March 2, voters were were given a second chance.

A change of lifestyle will see Murnane contemplate an early retirement.

“I was a lab technician in the plastics industry for 20-odd years and I start a new job on Monday, a traffic controller, something completely different until I retire,” Murnane said.

“I was meant to start last Tuesday but with the week leading up to the race they said I could start on Monday.”

Murnane was always confident Mystic Journey would take holding out.

“They said she loves travelling on the outside and she just cruised along,” he said.

“She got in a lovely spot. It’s so exciting.”

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