For as long as Andrew Bobbin can remember, it's been a dream to train racehorses.
It has taken a while to get there, but the 42-year-old has the hit the ground running in the early months of his career.
Bobbin's journey to starting his own operation near Lake Fyans in the Grampians has taken many twists and turns.
Growing up in Bemboka in country New South Wales, Bobbin pursued rugby league as a youngster - playing one NRL match for St George Illawarra Dragons in 2001 - before embarking on an exciting career in television with international broadcaster CNN as cameraman, editor and producer.
After about 10 years based out of London and in a job that took him all over the world, Bobbin decided it was time for a change and knocked on the doors of Sydney trainer Gai Waterhouse. He worked there for a while and then joined forces with Matt Cumani when the Englishman fired up his training centre here locally at the Ballarat Turf Club.
While playing a major hand in getting the Cumani stable up and running, Bobbin's passion to go alone burned inside and late last year he made the move to secure a property near Stawell.
The winners have come quickly, too. From just 14 runners to the races, Bobbin has had four winners, with Dubai Dominion's triumphs including both the Nhill and Koroit cups.
"When I first got my trainer's licence, I thought it was important to get to the races as quick as possible," Bobbin said.
"Realistically the only way to do that is to buy second-hand tried horses. In my previous role I've sold plenty of tried horses and quite often I know they come with their issues, so while it was something that can be a bit of a tricky situation... I knew I had to do it to get to the races.
"We bought a handful of tried horses and most of them were out of form, but did have ability. So the challenge was to try and get them back into the swing of things."
Among those to first join the team were Jane's Angel, which came from previous trainers John and Chris Ledger, Vigere, from Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young, and former Ciaron Maher and David Eustace galloper Dubai Dominion. And three made it into the winner's stall at Nhill on December 27 before the latter went two-in-a-row with success in the feature at Warrnambool on January 10.
"They know how to be racehorses because they're exposed and have learnt their craft in bigger operations and seemingly the key to getting them back into the swing of things again has been the farm," the father of one said.
"We do something different everyday, it's a natural environment and there's definitely something special about this heavy sand."
Bobbin's next runner will be ex-Busuttin and Young galloper Trolleyed, which has been accepted for a 2200m race at Camperdown on Saturday.
Jane's Angel has also been nominated for a race at Sandown next Wednesday.