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Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

Caveman revived happy memories for astute Henley Brook trainer Mike Reed when he stormed home from ninth at the bell to win the 2503m The Caduceus Club Members Handicap at Gloucester Park on Friday night.

Caveman, a last-start winner, was at lucrative odds as a $25.30 outsider from the 20m mark in the standing-start event, with frontmarker Hittheroadjack dominating the betting and starting a hot favourite at $1.30.

The five-year-old stallion is related to Willowleaf Boy, who was prepared by Reed when he won the $85,000 Pearl Classic in June 2003. Caveman is the first foal out of Our Copper Art, whose granddam Copper Strike produced Willowleaf Boy.

Shannon Suvaljko did not bustle Caveman in the early stages before he brought the horse home with a well-timed burst from the rear to take the lead approaching the home turn and then holding out a fiercely determined Hittheroadjack, who was seventh at the bell after rearing and galloping at the start.

Hes Royal Blue, a $61 outsider, dashed to an early lead and set a solid pace before fading to finish last in the field of ten. Major Artist ($41) trailed the pacemaker before gaining a narrow lead 250m from home and then wilting to fourth.

Reed is an admirer of standing-start events, and said that they promoted betting and produced good competitive racing. He said that Caveman was tough but lacked a bit of brilliance.

“If he drew a good barrier in a fast-class race and sat on the pace he would go all day,” he said.

Caveman, who was bought by Jim Giumelli for $47,500 at the 2018 Perth APG yearling sale, has now earned $126,267 from 14 wins and ten placings from 41 starts.