Greyhound racing fans will be treated to a mouth-watering display tonight as three sensational heats of the Group Two Richmond Derby will be conducted. The time honoured classic has been won by some of the best talent Australia has ever seen including; Cyrus the Virus, Stately Bird and Mandagery Man.
With a $40,000 first prize on offer, the gruelling 535m circuit tests even the best sprinters with exceptional stamina required.
Heat one will kick off in grand style with recent Group One National Derby hero Jagger Swagger for Mark Azzopardi drawn ideally out wide in box seven. After recording a near record 30.35 back in November, no eyebrows will be raised if the son of Premier Fantasy repeats this personal best effort. Zipping Milo for in form trainer Jason Mackay is unbeaten at his last five starts with some impressive efforts over the middle distance. His recent Richmond form speaks for itself with three starts for three wins including a sizzling 30.57 personal best but will need to be at his best from the tricky box five. The valued runner of the field is recent Richmond 618m track record holder Where’s Keroma. Blowing his rivals away in a superb exhibition of speed, a favourable box three could see trainer Anthony Azzopardi continue his amazing start to 2013 with another group final contender.
Outstanding youngster Carlos Pedro for Mark Gatt will step out in heat two from the coveted box one. All eyes are surely to be on the semaphore board after the beautifully bred son of Where’s Pedro and Physical clocked a sensational 30.36 after just his third career start. Having been unplaced in just one of his nine starts, this surely spells exciting times ahead for owner Edwin Kingswell who could have potentially found a replacement for recently retired star Oaks Road. Lucky I’m Black for Anthony Azzopardi is drawn ideally in box two with a fast 30.50 personal best. Having solid form as of late at Wentworth Park and Sandown, could steal this heat at healthy odds. Sticking with a box order trifecta, Ferly Reign for Jason Magri is having his first try over the Richmond distance after some handy form at Bulli over the 472m and should have the stamina to run this out and potentially book a final spot.
Magnum Blast has the bloodlines and the talent to be a potential star and as of late has blossomed into a handy race dog. After running a gallant second in the Group One National Derby just two weeks ago followed by a strong Wentworth Park win last week, an ideal box two should see the Anthony Azzopardi trained youngster get the fly in the early stages. Mythical Eagle recently took out the Bathurst Gold Cup in impressive fashion leading all the way in a blistering 30.01. Despite drawing the unfavourable box five, his excellent early speed should see him cross his slower inside rivals early. Recent Group Two Bulli Gold Cup winner Hoover Boy has made a triumphant return to form in recent weeks for trainer Luke Azzopardi with the ability to snatch this heat. A 30.65 personal best over the 535m distance should see him figure late in the race despite an unfavourable box four.
Richmond greyhounds is the place to be this Saturday night as it provides a perfect appetizer to the Group One Golden Easter Egg series beginning in two weeks. Heat one kicks off at 8.14pm.