Race caller Josh Fleming beats 'horrible' anomaly in bizarre coincidence

Queensland race caller Josh Fleming had his work cut out for him after nine entrants in one race all came from the 'Mishani' stable - leading to a potentially confusing call. Pictures: Getty Images/TAB
Queensland race caller Josh Fleming had his work cut out for him after nine entrants in one race all came from the 'Mishani' stable - leading to a potentially confusing call. Pictures: Getty Images/TAB

Josh Fleming, you are a genius.

The leading Queenslander race caller had the unenviable task of calling nine horses with the same first name in Saturday's opening race at Eagle Farm – and absolutely nailed it.

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Trainer Les Ross, operating under the Mishani banner, entered nine runners in the 10-horse field and warned Fleming he would have his hands full sifting through them all.

There was Mishani Renegade, Mishani Raider, Mishani Tycoon, Mishani Valour, Mishani Star, Mishani Twilight, Mishani Mystique, Mishani Metallic and Mishani Cienna.

Just to make matters even more complicated, the only non-Mishani horse in the field – Magic of Millo - sported a 'M' name and had similar silks colours to many in the field.

Ross did Fleming a slight favour, scratching Mishani Flash and Mishani Eagle pre-race.

Social media lit up on Friday when the caller's unique challenge was revealed, with many assuming the M overload would leave him a tongue-tied mess.

But the composed Fleming didn’t miss a beat despite a torrid finish which saw Mishani Renegade just overcome Mishani Raider from Mishani Mystique.

Magic of Millo – for what's it worth – placed fifth, ahead of a pile of other Mishani runners.

Josh Fleming unflappable in almost unheard of calling feat

Speaking before the race, Fleming told Punters.com.au: "When I saw nine in, I thought 'oh god, here we go'.

"There are going to be Ms everywhere and then you've got Renegade and Raider, Tycoon and Twilight, and Mystique and Metallic as well - it's a horrible mash-up of words.

"I'm not freaking out about it but I'm also glad it's race one and it will be out of the way nice and early.

"We'll just go there, have a crack and hope that we get it right."

And he did.

Yahoo Sport Australia counted at least 32 'Mishani' mentions over the 1000m journey without a single slip-up, the caller relying heavily on cap colours and saddlecloths to get him through the 80-second ordeal.

Fleming was no doubt a relieved man after successfully negotiating the M-athon and doesn’t believe the rules should be tweaked to prevent a trainer from saddling up so many horses with the same name.

He said: "I don't think there needs to be a change.

"I think it's just one of those things in racing that we have to deal with. We've had Craigleas in the past and it's common in the other codes."

Fleming also tipped the winner, capping a call he will never forget and one he probably hopes never to have to repeat for the remainder of his career.

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