Slot winner banks on edit's X-factor for Kosciuszko glory

Lockdown meant Garry Algie almost forgot to buy his tickets in the slot draw for the $1.3 million The Kosciuszko this time around.

"I'm sitting at home and an ad came on the telly for the slot draw," Garry Algie said. "I thought to myself, 'I haven't got a ticket in the bloody Kosciuszko'. There were only a couple of days left.

"Normally, over a few weeks, I'd spent about $120 dollars on tickets. I'd be at the club and have $20 in my pocket and buy a few out of the machine. I'd do that a few times. But this time I'd forgotten because the pubs and clubs were all shut.

"I had $25 in my TAB account, so I bought five tickets and ended up winning a slot! When you look at that hotel mob in Wagga, I read they spent $52,500 on tickets. Hooley Dooley, that's a power of money. I still can't believe I won a slot after only buying five tickets.

"I'm a bit embarrassed about it actually, but that's the luck of the draw."

Algie eventually did a deal with the connections of Edit, via the Tamworth galloper's trainer, Cody Morgan, to have the horse run for him. Edit is being kept very safe at $11 in TAB fixed odds betting on The Kosciuszko.

"I live in a mobile home at my mate Ken's property at Canyonleigh, in the Southern Highlands," Algie said. It's a farming area. The population's about 400 and there aren't any shops – the nearest town is Moss Vale, a bit over 30 kilometres away.

"Someone who knows Ken rang him and said, 'Hey, a TAB account holder from Canyonleigh won a slot in The Kosciuszko'. Ken said, 'It wasn't me, I haven't got any tickets', and I said, 'Hang on, I've got five tickets - I hope it's me'."

After receiving confirmation from Racing NSW that he was, indeed, a slot-holder, Algie went to work on a long list of eligible horses provided to him by the organisation.

"I didn't know much about them, but if you do your home-work you can find out where a horse prefers to be in a race, what its finishing run is like and what sort of run it needs to be a chance," he said.

"I went through everything for six or seven hours, until about 2am. There was nothing worth watching on TV anyway. Then in the morning I tried for Art Cadeau first and then Victorem, but they were both gone.

"Then I decided to go for a horse that has a bit of X factor, where his full ability might still be a bit unknown but he's got something going for him. I'd had a look at Edit earlier - he's only had the six starts for two wins and two placings and he's got a good finishing sprint.

"I rang Cody Morgan and he said he'd already had a couple of phone calls from slot-holders, but that he wasn't happy with the prizemoney share that was suggested. I did a deal with him and got Edit for the race.

"Now, I don't know how the horses I watched him sprint past on video compare to the horses in The Kosciuszko, but I think he's a chance in the race. He's only won $38,000 in prizemoney, but that could change."

If it changes dramatically in The Kosciuszko at Randwick on October 16, where first prizemoney is $685,000, then Algie will be in the money as well from his share of the deal.

"What I know about horses you could write on the back of a postage stamp in longhand," he said.

"But I had a look into it and when I ended up with Edit I very was happy about that. Looking forward to the race now."


Racing and Sports