Let's look at it from Watco's point of view. It has made good business out of near moribund grain lines across Kansas and the Great Plains, and has just resuscitated an old New York Central line in West Virginia that was partly closed by Norfolk Southern and then sold. It's now hauling chemicals and coal that wasn't there two years ago.
The GrainCorp contract will come close to making Watco the single quasi-shortline operator on the Southern and Southwestern lines, free to attract other traffic like cotton, plus roadhauling NSW grain and cotton to Goondiwindi...and generally doing things Aurizon hasn't been bothered with now or in the future. Regional and rural freight are things Watco is good at.
It may well be thinking it has a good ten years to grow regional freight where it can dominate the market. It may even be thinking it can continue to offer shortline services on the Southwestern Line, even if the Inland Rail happens...that is what shortline operators do.
Now look at the Inland Rail project. There are still no new sections built or committed to building...2025 is now seven years away with nothing but moveable lines on maps so far. The current Federal Government is the major proponent, support from the states hasn't been wildly forthcoming. A likely change of government in Canberra will probably delay construction while more reports and studies are done. I'm thinking (and Watco maybe too) that 2025 will come and go and only existing infrastructure will still be in place.
Lets just see if Watco goes after other freight next year and how well it does with the rail assets it has to use before deciding what will and won't be around when we get to 2025...I suspect the situation has changed and perhaps radically.