Joe Cleary wakes up to the sound of his alarm when few others do.
Even when the date on his calendar marks December 25 - for most a day to forget about work and tuck into a feed with family and friends.
But the racing trainer has little alternative - Cleary has five runners at Queanbeyan on Boxing Day, four in Canberra on Friday, and another horse soon bound for Sydney.
So in he goes to the stables to put his horses through their paces.
It is the only way he can start a day which would only get busier with carloads of people spilling through his father Frank's front door for Christmas lunch.
That's family, partners, and even staff members from as far as Wagga Wagga, and another who has shifted to work under Cleary after a stint with Gai Waterhouse.
"All horses get worked, obviously because we've got nine horses racing on Boxing Day and on the 27th at Canberra," Cleary said.
MORE CANBERRA SPORT
"Then I'm giving them all Saturday and Sunday off, they get a whole weekend. So as soon as their done on Friday morning, they don't come back until Monday morning.It's worked out pretty good.
"Once we do the morning work, everyone showers, goes home and gets ready. My wife is going to run around to pick everyone up to go to Frank's.
"There's nothing worse than being on Christmas Day and having nowhere to go. We just look after them, simple as that.
"You get sick of the sight of them occasionally, but it is Christmas and we're a pretty caring family as you probably understand.
"We don't mind looking after anyone so we take a few people in and make sure they're all fed and watered and enjoying the day.
"We've got the pool out the back if they want to have a swim, so we just look after them."
Among Cleary's five runners on Boxing Day are Irish Bride in the 1200m maiden plate which looms as a "very winnable" race on paper.
Tag And Release will bring down the curtain on a long and hard preparation in the benchmark 50 handicap having already peaked on Queanbeyan Cup day, with Cleary "happy to give him one more run before he goes out.
Cleary's new Victorian horse Havaduel will close out the day in the class one and maiden plate which again looms as a "very winnable race for a lovely horse".
Wedged in between will be Parisians and Katie Did It in the class two handicap.
MORE CANBERRA SPORT
"I had to scratch [Katie Did It] from the Highway race in Sydney last week due to the weather, the traffic and the bushfires," Cleary said.
"Obviously I made the right decision by scratching her because the highway was closed. We're going to spin around and make sure she is ready to go to race in Moruya on January 6.
"We've done our best. We get them worked as early as we possibly can, the smoke has just sort of been picking up of an afternoon.
"I've been pretty lucky. I've got walk-in, walk-outs at my stables and they get heaps of freedom there.
"All in all, it's just been a disaster, what's gone on, but you've just got to work around it, simple as that."