Three-time Group winner Kilty Lad is the greyhound to beat after drawing box one in Saturday night’s Group 1 Hudson Pacific Maturity Classic over 525 metres at The Meadows.
The son of Superman and Sisco Train looked back to his very best form in the third of the semi finals, overcoming box five for a brilliant six-length win in 29.75, just .09 outside his personal best at the track.
The Kellie Bravo-trained chaser is attempting to become the third greyhound to win the Silver Chief – Maturity Classic double, and the first to do so in over 20 years.
Victory next week will push Kilty Lad’s prizemoney to over $325,000 in a career that has spanned 40 starts.
One of his main dangers appears to be the Graeme Bate-trained Shereen Bale, who sizzled around the Broadmeadows circuit to score by nine lengths in a Best of Night 29.68, after a brilliant 5.01 first split to set up the victory. The daughter of Over Flo and Horizon Bale has now won five of her last six starts, and will start from box eight in the Group 1 classic.
Tasmanian chaser Rewind – who will start from box two in the final - continued his great form on the mainland, taking out the first heat after a go-to-whoa 29.84 gallop, making it 20 wins from just 27 career starts.
It promises to be a big night for his trainer Darren McDonald, who also has two finalists engaged in the Group 3 AWM Distance Championship on a busy Saturday night.
The Jeff Britton-trained Mepunga Nicky (box six) was another to impress, reeling off amazing splits to score over Bogie Beltah in 29.90. The daughter of Irish sire Premier Fantasy and Mepunga Diamond reached the first split in 4.96 – just .01 outside the first sectional record at The Meadows. The white and black chaser will start from box six in Saturday’s final.
The winner of this year’s Group 1 Hudson Pacific Maturity Classic will take home $75,000 – the highest purse in the race’s 41-year history.
Hudson Pacific Maturity Classic
$50,000 to the winner Group 1 Hudson Pacific Maturity Classic (525m)
- Box 1 - Kilty Lad - Kelly Bravo - $2.25
- Box 2 - Rewind - Darren McDonald - $3.50
- Box 3 - Stefan Bale - Graeme Bate - $8.00
- Box 4 - Dyna Bert - Andrea Dailly - $12.00
- Box 5 - Bogie Beltah - Ryan Ayre - $5.00
- Box 6 - Mepunga Nicky - Jeff Britton - $7.00
- Box 7 - Black Saharrah - Greg Tatti - $15.00
- Box 8 - Shereen Bale - Graeme Bate - $2.50
- Box 9 - Allen Lawson - Graeme Bate - 1st Reserve
- Box 10 - Breckenridge - Jamie Ennis - 2nd Reserve