NORWEGIAN Wood won the Vic Bred Maiden Final at Warragul last Tuesday night with veteran Korumburra trainer Reg Boyce.

The day was emotional for Reg, 77, who bred Norwegian Wood’s Barcia Bale x Lady Ceeccee litter in partnership with the late Karen Leek, long-time friend and much-loved industry icon who passed away in tragic circumstances last May.

“I knew Karen for years and years and I was so rapt to win that race for what it meant to us and Karen’s family,” Reg said.

While Norwegian Wood hadn’t won in her two previous starts and was sent around at double odd figures, the price didn’t factor in the angel on her shoulder.

After running second on debut, Norwegian Wood qualified for the Vic Breeders Final when finishing third in her heat.

She was then one of the roughies in the final but dug deep in a desperately tight finish – perhaps with the aid of divine intervention – to defeat bluebloods Big Sky Rico and Wing Chun Girl, half relations to 2020 Melbourne Cup winner Hard Style Rico.

Reg and owner Michael Anderson were delighted with the performance, but this result was about much more than times, margins and prizemoney.

“I’ve been training for 54 years and while we don’t have the numbers we used to, the dogs give us a good reason to get out of bed in the morning,” Reg said.

Reg prepared a double at Warragul, with superbly bred youngster Catch, a half-sister to last week’s G1 Brisbane Cup winner Equalizer, continuing the bright start to her career with her second win from three starts.