Ipswich syndicate in "Melbourne Cup" style celebration
"IT'S wonderful. It's probably our version of the Melbourne Cup for us Ipswich people."
That's how breeder and part-owner Michael Grieve summed up the experience of having a starter in Saturday's Ipswich Cup.
Although five-year-old gelding Dodging Eddie spent most of the 2150m journey trailing, it was a memorable achievement for the syndicate.
Other part-owners are St Edmund's Old Boys Trent Quinn, Nathan Lee, twins Ross and Tim Sauer, Craig Gillam, David Richardson and Michael Wiseman.
The eight syndicate members and their partners shared in the atmosphere of having a locally-bred horse in the $203,000 race at Bundamba racetrack.
"Just to have a runner was a thrill," Grieve said, reflecting on his first starter in the city's premier race.
"He might have been out of his depth yesterday but we all had a lovely day. It was fantastic."
Former St Edmund's school teacher Grieve bred the horse at his 190 acre Grandview stud at Peak Crossing.
He was delighted to see seven other sporty Ipswich people benefit from part-owning a race horse.
"To get a runner in the Cup, the excitement of the day, and the build-up all week was fantastic," he said.
"They are a lovely bunch of guys. They are great to get along with and very supportive."
Dodging Eddie attracted plenty of home crowd support as third emergency and despite starting the race at $53 on the tote.
"There was a lot of banter going on, there was emails going back and forwards trying to work out whether we were going to get a start or not," Grieve said.
"To find out Friday lunchtime (he was in), everybody was so excited. It was probably a little bit of a shame that we didn't have a lot of time to get really organised but we were all able to get there and enjoy the day.
"It was great to have the whole gang together and we had a lot of well-wishers before the race and after the race and a lot of support from everybody."
Grieve hoped Dodging Eddie could next race in his grade around the 2000m mark before possibly chasing a spot in the Queensland Cup at Eagle Farm on July 6.
"We were probably a little bit flat afterwards because he just missed the kick and just didn't seem to be with it,'' the breeder said of his Ipswich Cup run.
"We probably didn't see the best of him but I think we were probably a little bit out of our class.
"He just got too far behind and he probably didn't handle the ground quite as much as we thought he might.
"But I still woke up this morning, watched the replay and thought we were in the Ipswich Cup and we've had a runner and it was just lovely to be in amongst all those people."