Barkevious Mingo surpassed SEK 1 million in earnings when he won the race Ändå Något in Åmål last summer.
Säffle based amateur trainer Nils Norelius is hoping for a repeat this year.
"We've had full focus on this race since he's the reigning champion".
The forecast says no participation and around 20 degrees in Åmål for Wednesday evening and good sport is being offered, both a Class II leg and a leg of Diamantstoet each with SEK 125,000 for the winner.
The V86® card starts with a bigger race, Ändå Något. Last year saw a very popular winner - the home town hero Barkevious Mingo with Carl Johan Jepson in the bike.
A race that trainer Nils Norelius described as emotionally the biggest win of his career.
4219 people came out to watch him win last year.
"It was his first time racing at Åmål so it was really special to be able to win" says Nils Norelius.
The amateur trainer from Säffle has been around horses for 40 of his 70 years. Seven year old gelding Barkevious Mingo is the star he's been waiting for all this years.
Moved in to the track
Nils Norelius, or Nisse as he is called, moved in to the Åmål backstretch with his two horses in the end of last year.
"We're three older retired guys sharing a barn here at Åmål. I was close to the track before too, now I'm even closer" says Nisse with a laugh.
Since his win in the long distance race Ändå Något last year, Barkeviuos Mingo has made another SEK 200,000. Included in that is a V75® win at home at Åmål around Christmas last year.
"He won right after we moved in her so he seems happy with his new home"
"Was flying across the wire"
Barkevious Mingo made one start in the beginning of the year before he was put away for some down time.
Early June he was back racing in a three kilometer race at Åby. Lutfi Kolgjinu started 20 meters ahead of him with Rushmore Face and just barely held on before the star of Åmål. The result said he was only beat a nose.
"We didn't expect him to be as good as he were there at Åby, he was flying across the wire. The next stride he had already passed the other horse. It was a long race, but still three meters too short" says Nisse with a laugh.
Trainer Norelius doesn't believe his horse is in top form. He feels good and the form is ok and with the last race he's definitely on his was up in form.
"Maybe he should have had one more race but Jepson said to go straight to this race and so I did. The vet found a couple smaller issues that we've worked on. He doesn't need a lot to get back in form so it might the best to go straight to this race".
Barkevious Mingo will start 20 meters behind over the distance 2,880 meters. What do you think about your chances?
"Bryssel has raced very well a few times and if he stays flat he might be tough to beat. The way I look at it, the horse who gets to front first of us and him will be the one to beat. I think it will be either mine or Goop's horse in the front after a while. But you never know, someone else might have the same plan".
What about equipment?
"He will race with shoes and his blind bridle as usual. Now when we drew post one we'll go with the American sulky again. He has a great attitude, he knows when it's race time. He might not feel all that good when he jogs the wrong way of the track, but as soon as I turn him he's a different horse".