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Happy Trails Books Cox Ticket

Five year old gelding Happy Trails has gained automatic entry into the Cox Plate next month after an exciting victory in the Group 2 Dato Tan Chin Name Stakes at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

Happy Trails sat just off the speed before jockey Glen Boss took him to the front rounding the final turn. Favourite Green Moon made up plenty of ground in the straight, but fell just short, losing by the narrowest of margins. 

Last years winner Rekindled Interest battled on strongly for third place with Linton not far behind in fourth.

Happy Trails trainer Paul Beshara was delighted with the victory, which was just the second group win for the horse. Both have come in this campaign.

"This is unbelievable, a dream come true", he said after the race.

"He'll definitely go to the Cox Plate. That was his ticket in."

Happy Trails has moved into the third line of betting in the big race, shortening to $21. But Glen Boss wasn't so sure of his ability to match up in a weight for age race, notably the toughest WFA in Australian racing.

"Iím not sure if he can win a Cox Plate this horse," the multiple Melbourne Cup winning jodckey said.

"He has got some good form around some smart horses but not at weight-for-age, this is his first win at weight-for-age level."

"But it costs you nothing to dream", Boss also said.

Happy Trails had the fitness edge on Green Moon in Saturday's race, but this wouldn't be the case next month. Green Moon is currently fourth favourite for the Cox behind Pierro, More Joyous and Manighar. Rekindled Interest is close behind.

Seven year old Heart of Dreams finished nine lengths behind in 11th place and has now been retired. It marks the end of a very strong racing career that saw five Group victories including a win in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes in 2009. His prizemoney totals more than $1.6 million.

Glen Boss had another big win on the day, guiding Oasis Bloom to a narrow win over Spirit Song in the Group 2 Stocks Stakes.

But perhaps his most impressive performance was the ride on 3 year old Love For Ransom in the Boscastle Plate. Her fast finish against talented youngsters Stella Lante and Saturn Rock has seen her shoot up the betting for the Thousand Guineas to be outright second favourtite.

Bel Sprinter returned with a good win in the Mitty McEwen Stakes over 1000 metres, It was a tight finish with Platelet, Snitzem and Golden Archer all finishing within a length of the winner.

Ex Melbourne Cup champ Precedence returned to the winners list with a victory in the Adapt Australia Handicap.

Next weekend, the racing moves to Caulfield for the Underwood Stakes, Thousand Guineas Prelude and Naturalism Stakes.