January 29, 2016 6:55pm

Danny Russell, Herald Sun

Trainer Brett Cavanough says he was lucky not lose any horses after a fire ripped through a spelling farm. Picture: Jenny Evans

BRETT Cavanough calls it a quirk of fate that a virus swept through his Albury stables and inadvertently saved two of his best horses from a bushfire.

The trainer is still shaking his head in amazement that he pulled The Monstar and Just A Bullet off a spelling farm just four days before the property was engulfed in flames.

On Saturday the two horses will run at Flemington.

“I think it was just fate more than anything, mate, that we got them out a couple of days earlier than we anticipated,” Cavanough said.

“It was just one of those things that happened. You can look back and say, ‘I wish I would have, or I wish I could have’, when you don’t do things, but I think that was just something that we did. Their program was that they were there for another fortnight.”

Cavanough said a herd virus had caught his stable off guard and they were at their wits end trying to work out what was wrong with their horses.

He did not have a runner for seven weeks.

Strangely, it was also a blessing in disguise — he decided to bring The Monstar and Just A Bullet to see if they would also “get sick” and help pinpoint the problem afflicting the stable.

“It just so happened that I pulled them out of the paddock and pulled some bloods on them to find out what was going on,” Cavanough said.

“I think I pulled them out on the Tuesday or the Wednesday and by the Sunday the bushfire was going through. They both caught the virus and both got over it.”