Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) Stewards have lodged an appeal of two of the sanctions delivered by the independent Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board (RADB) in the case of Mr Graeme Bate, which they believe to be manifestly inadequate given the nature of the breaches.
Mr Graeme Bate pleaded guilty to five serious offences under the Greyhounds Australasia Rules (GAR) before the RADB on Tuesday 10 June 2014. The charges to which Mr Bate pleaded guilty include; administering a prohibited substance to a greyhound under his care, administering a prohibited substance to greyhounds trained by another person, procuring tablets for the purpose of administering to greyhounds and making a false and misleading statement.
Across the five charges, the RADB imposed penalties totalling 24 months disqualification and $1000 in fines.
Stewards have the right to appeal the RADB‚Äôs decision to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) under the Racing Act (1958).
Glen Canty, General Manager ‚Äď Integrity, Racing and Welfare at GRV, commented that the decision of the RADB in regard to two of the sanctions does not send a strong enough message about the seriousness of the rule breaches.
‚ÄúThe decision to disqualify Mr Bate for a period of two years was too lenient in our opinion and after internal
discussions, GRV Stewards have decided to lodge an appeal,‚ÄĚ Mr Canty said.
GRV will make no further comment about this matter until it is heard at VCAT
(1) GAR83(1) ‚Äď In that Mr. Bate, the trainer of the greyhound Luxurious, which was nominated to compete in an Event, namely, Race 8, the Liam and Taryn‚Äď Mixed 3&4,conducted by Sale Greyhound Racing Club at Sale on 11 August 2013, did administer or cause to be administered the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone for the purpose of affecting the greyhound‚Äôs condition, behaviour or performance in the Event.
(2) GAR83(2) and (3) ‚Äď In that Mr. Bate, the trainer of the greyhound Luxurious, which was nominated to compete in an event, namely, race 8, the Liam and Taryn‚Äď Mixed 3&4, conducted by the Sale Greyhound Racing Club at Sale on 11 August 2013, did fail on that date to present the greyhound free of any prohibited substance, given that a pre race urine sample taken from the greyhound indicated the presence of a prohibited substance, namely an unusual or abnormal amount of Hydrocortisone.
(3) GAR86(o) ‚Äď In that Mr. Bate did make a false or misleading statement on 24 October 2013 regarding the presence of the substance Hydrocortisone in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets at his property at Lara, to Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) Stewards Mr. Glenn Fish and Mr. Ron Matthews and GRV Industry Veterinary Officer Dr Steven Karamatic during the course of an investigation regarding a swab irregularity taken from the greyhound ‚ÄėLuxurious‚Äô on 11 August 2013, which in the opinion of Stewards was dishonest, improper or constitutes misconduct.
(4) GAR86(o) ‚Äď In that Mr. Bate did procure up to six thousand (6000) Hysone 20mg tablets between on or about 11 August 2012 and 6 July 2013 on behalf of Mr Peter Hunt without his knowledge or permission, which in the opinion of Stewards was dishonest, improper, or constitutes misconduct.
(5) GAR86(o) ‚Äď In that between on or about 11 August 2012 and 23 October 2013 Mr. Bate did administer or cause to be administered the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone, in the form of Hysone 20mg tablets, to greyhounds trained by Mr Peter Hunt without his knowledge or permission, being conduct which in the opinion of Stewards is dishonest, improper or constitutes misconduct.
(6) GAR86(o) ‚Äď In that Mr. Bate, did procure up to seven thousand two hundred (7200) Hysone 20mg tablets containing the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone between on or about 7 May 2012 and 3 April 2013 for the purpose of administering to greyhounds, which in the opinion of Stewards was dishonest, improper, or constitutes misconduct.
General – General Following advice from Racing Analytical Services Laboratory, the Stewards of Greyhound Racing Victoria conducted an investigation into the results of a pre-race urine sample taken from greyhound ‚ÄėLuxurious‚Äô at the Sale Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Sunday, 11 August 2013.
During the investigation, Stewards received evidence from registered trainer Mr. Graeme Bate, Mrs. Beverley Bate (Owner), Mr. Joe Briffa (Trainer), Mr. Robert Camilleri (Trainer), Ms. Amy Cole (Trainer), Ms. Jenny Hunt (Trainer), Mr. Leon Harris (Handler), Ms. Michelle Mallia-Magri (Trainer), Mr. Chris Falcke (Department of Health), Wendy Fasoli (Trainer) and received statements from Dr. Alastair Smith (Sandown Veterinary Clinic), Mr. Paul Zahra
(Racing Analytical Services Laboratory), Dr. Steven Karamatic (Greyhound Racing Industry Veterinary Officer), Mr. Glenn Fish (Chief Steward) and Mr. Ron Matthews (Steward).
After considering the evidence, Stewards charged Mr. Bate with breaches of Greyhounds Australasia Rules as indicated in charges (1) to (6) above.
Under Rule 47.1 of the Greyhound Racing Victoria Local Rules these charges constitute Serious Offences. As a result, on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 this matter was heard before the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board in the first instance under Greyhound Local Racing Rule 47.3 and Sections 83C(b) and 83M(1) of the Racing Act.
Mr. Graeme Bate was represented by Ms. Carmen Randazzo SC, instructed by Mr. Rowan Slattery.
Mr. Paul Holdenson QC assisted by Mr. Patrick Considine (Corrs Chambers Westgarth) represented the Stewards Panel.
Mr. Graeme Bate pleaded guilty to charges (1) and (3) to (6). Charge 2 was not initially put for a plea. Upon Mr. Bate pleading guilty to charge (1), Charge (2) was withdrawn.
After hearing all the evidence tendered and having regard to GAR83 (1) and GAR86 (o), the RADB determined that:
(a) in relation to charge (1), Mr. Bate was guilty as charged and he was disqualified for 12 months;
(b) in relation to charge (3), Mr. Bate was guilty as charged. His conduct was regarded as improper and he was fined $500 and disqualified for 3 months;
(c) in relation to charge (4), Mr. Bate was guilty as charged. His conduct was regarded as dishonest and he was fined $500 and disqualified for 6 months;
(d) in relation to charge (5), Mr. Bate was guilty as charged. His conduct was regarded as improper and he was disqualified for 6 months (with 3 months of this disqualification to be served concurrently with the disqualification penalty for charge 4); and
(e) in relation to charge (6), Mr. Bate was guilty as charged and was disqualified for 6 months (to be served concurrently with the disqualification penalty for charge 4);
In assessing penalties, the Board took into account all the evidence and submissions, including the following matters:
(a) The nature of the charge;
(b) Mr. Bate‚Äôs guilty pleas;
(c) The nature of the prohibited substance Hydrocortisone;
(d) The need to maintain the integrity of greyhound racing and ensure a level playing field for all participants;
(e) Prior penalties for Mr. Bate and others for similar offences, including those penalties associated with other persons charged in the ‚ÄėLuxurious‚Äô swab irregularity matter;
(f) Mr. Bate had the main role in the operations of his kennels including what medications were to be administered;
(g) Mr. Bate‚Äôs conduct was over a lengthy period of time; and
(h) Mr. Bate was a leading greyhound trainer with significant contributions to the industry over many years.
Acting under GAR83(4), the RADB also disqualified ‚ÄėLuxurious‚Äô from Event 8 ‚Äď LIAM TARYN SYND Mixed 440m – at the Sale Greyhound Racing Club meeting held on Sunday, 11 August 2013 and amended the placings accordingly.
You Can Talk made the most of her opportunities to land the listed Flying Amy Classic for ultra-consistent Queensland trainer Peter Ruetschi at Albion Park On Thursday night.
After leaving box three in third place, the daughter of Outa Credit and Where Are You (Hallucinate – Duel’s Me Mum) was quickly out-paced and left the straight in fifth position, receiving some slight interference in the process.
King Elliot (7) led the field out of the straight but was quickly under siege from the $2.80 favourite Angvella (1) who railed underneath him to take the lead down the back. Give You Credit (6) chimed in three-wide and looked destined to pass the leaders as they left the back straight.
With the three leaders racing tightly Angvella appeared to run wide, taking Give You Credit with him. But if the Ruetschi camp were disappointed that they’d been taken out of play after the looking the winner, they would have soon realised that all their Christmas’ had come at once.
The field had parted like the Red Sea for You Can Talk, presenting her with a gifted run and the 27-month-old duly obliged by spearing through to race away and score by 1 3/4 lengths in the time of 30.39. Happy Haswell (4) charged home for second while Angvella managed to pick himself up off the canvas to grab third just in front of You Say So (2).
It was the icing on the cake for Patrick Estate trainer Peter Ruetschi who had qualified three litter-mates for the final.
There were plenty of hard luck stories in the race but the worst effected seemed to be Give You Credit (6) who was taken wide when making a dash for home and Nala’s Heart (5) who also copped the backwash of that mix-up when making a run.
The win was You Can Talk’s 14th from 28 starts and takes her prize-money earnings beyond the $50,000 mark.
1st – You Can Talk (3) – Peter Ruetschi
2nd – Happy Haswell (4) – Reg Kay
3rd – Angvella (1) – Christina Harman
4th – You Say So (2) – Peter Ruetschi
5th – Give You Credit (6) – Peter Ruetschi
6th – Super Vision (8) – Peter Young
7th – Nala’s Heart (5) – Robert Handyside
8th – King Elliot (7) – Reg Hazelgrove
1st Split: 5.54 (7)
2nd Split: 11.77 (1)
3rd Split: 13.08 (3)
Margins: 1 3/4 x 1/2
Scratchings: Flash Reality (9), Renatus (10)
Victorian star chaser Hooksy will be the centre of attention this Saturday night at Wentworth Park, with three star-studded heats of the Group One Peter Mosman Classic to be conducted.
The son of Hondo Black and Uno Witch was all the rage in his heat last week, starting at skinny odds of $1.60. He didn’t disappoint an array of punters, clocking best of the night figures of 29.47. The Victorian first caught the eye of enthusiasts back in March. Tanya Auld and husband Jim made the testing trip up to the Glebe circuit from their base in Victoria and claimed their first Group win with Hooksy, the $25,000 Group Three New Sensation.
Hooksy will be a short-priced favourite when he steps out in semi-final one from box three. He has brilliant acceleration once he balances up and should secure a spot in next week’s $75,000 to the winner final. My Awesome Opal from box six is the only other heat winner in this semi-final after upsetting a hot field last week at huge odds, recording a time of 30.08 for trainer Marie Burton. Stilton Blue has been very consistent of late and finished a gallant second last week behind Tommy Brislane in a fast 29.71 by three and a half-lengths.
Semi-final two contains Jason Mackay’s talented chaser Zipping Delta, who put in her best performance at the track last week, clocking a sizzling 29.49 over the 520m journey. The daughter of Bekim Bale and Scarlett Spy began beautifully from the inside alley to record her third consecutive win and will be hard to hold out again from a favourable box three.
Another in-form chaser Push It upset hot favourite Keybow in her heat last week, securing her fourth consecutive victory at Wentworth Park when clocking a smart 29.81 from box eight. The Dean Swain trained chaser pinged from the outside box and was never headed in an impressive three-length win. Aurora Girl put in a brave performance last week from box two, finishing three and a half lengths behind Cawbourne Whip in a fast 29.70. Marie Burton’s chaser will need to begin well from the middle draw this week, but has speed to burn and should challenge this field from box-rise.
The final semi contains two highly talented greyhounds looking to keep their winning streaks alive, with Tommy Brislane and Cawbourne Whip having won their past four straight. Steve White’s Tommy Brislane now has six wins from seven starts and is starting to emerge as one of the hottest young prospects in the state. He blew his rivals away last week in a hot run of 29.71 after stepping well from box three. The son of Premier Fantasy and Mary Virginia shot away to claim victory by three and a half lengths and is a model of consistency on the race track.
Cawbourne Whip has also stamped her authority as one of the brightest starts on the NSW racing circuit, recording another flying time of 29.50 in her heat win last week. The Jodie Lord trained greyhound will have to overcome a difficult box five draw, however she has brilliant early acceleration and can outstep her rivals to the first turn.
Group One winner Keybow failed to fire in last week’s heats, finishing second to Push It, recording a time of 29.99. After missing the start, the Darren McDonald speedster left his run too late, reducing the winning margin to just three lengths. Coming up with box two on Saturday night is a huge positive for this greyhound; however the son of Take The Kitty will need to improve at box-rise with some speedy greyhounds engaged on his outside that will cross hard in the early stages.
Semi final one kicks off at 9.12pm, with the winner and second placegetter guaranteed a spot in next week’s final. The two fastest third placings will make up the remainder of the field.
Australia’s Queen of the loam Xylia Allen added another Group One win to her list of achievements when she took out the Albion Park Gold Cup on Thursday night.
Beginning quickly from box one, the daughter of Turanza Bale and Tayah Bale (Droopys Vieri – Francesca Bale) gave nothing else a chance as she sped away to lead from pillar to post.
All eyes were on the clock as the 31kg black bitch made the $75,000 to-the-winner event a one act affair. When she crossed the line she had stopped the clock at 41.71, some 0.27 outside Dashing Corsair’s track record.
New Zealander Know Class (8) ran a solid race to finish in second. After leaving the boxes third, he ground his way home to run Xylia Allen to just three lengths on the line.
Infinite Wish was also doing her best work in the concluding stages and finished third a further 3/4 length away.
The win was Xylia Allen’s 32nd from 68 career outings and pushed her career stakes earnings beyond $600,000.
1st – Xylia Allen (Jenny Hunt)
2nd – Know Class (James Shaw)
3rd – Infinite Wish (Angela Langton)
4th – Eleazar (Kieron Butler)
5th – Mepunga Tiara (Jeff Britton)
6th – Mullaway (Joanne Price)
7th – Set Her Again (Bruce Linnan)
8th – Golfing Amy (Des Pollock)
1st Split: 15:73 (1)
2nd Split: 12.23 (1)
3rd Split: 13.75 (1)
Margins: 3 x 3/4
Scratchings: Late Angel Lee (9), Auriga Doll (10)
Kieron Butler is one of the lifebloods of greyhound racing, a spoke that is necessary for the big wheel to keep on turning.
On Thursday night he will rug up Eleazar from box five in the final of the Group One Albion Park Gold Cup, which is a just reward for someone who has been in the game for so long and always produced his own greyhounds.
“This is my first Group One in my 40 years,” Butler told ARG.
“I’ve been in the game that long and I’ve never been in a Group One. I was in a Group Two which I won but that was 30 years ago at the Gabba and I was in a Group Two in the Galaxy where I think I ran third too. Other than that I have been in a lot of finals and that sort of thing but no Group One’s.”
It is a fruit of the Goodna-based trainer’s labour that he is quite proud of given that he has done everything to get his greyhound to where she is.
“I bred her, I breed all my own dogs, I do the lot. I have never had anyone hand me a good dog and say have a go with that, they are always my own dogs who I have bred.”
While Eleazar is often a victim of her lack of early speed, there is no doubt that she can carve out some time when she gets the opportunity, something she has shown from a young age.
“One of the guys up here along with some blokes in Victoria offered me big money for her when she was around 13-months-old, she is bloody quick, she just hasn’t had a clear run in her career. When she was in Sydney with Dean and Sid (Swain) I think she trialled something like 29.61 at Wentworth Park, that is why we put her in the Oaks and Futurity.”
Eleazar is no stranger to meeting greyhounds the calibre of the ones she will face-off against in the final and while Butler says what a privilege it is to be in the race, he also points out how she has met the best at the top of their game in 2014.
“It is just nice to be in such elite company with Xylia Allen, she is the best sprinter/stayer in Australia, if not the world, what she can do is freakish, she is just a freak.”
“She beat us at Wentworth Park the night she ran the record. Coming into the race I thought we had a chance of running somewhere but Holy Christ Almighty, she came out and ran something like 15.80 to the first mark which is unheard of and that broke my bitches heart.”
“The week before Dyna Willow beat my bitch in track record time too, so when she was down in Sydney she ran into a few good ones.”
Butler had sent Eleazar down to Sid and Dean Swain Sydney for a change of scenery from the Brisbane environment with a few factors forcing his hand.
“I sent her down because I couldn’t get a run with her for a month up here and she needed a break from that first turn at Albion Park. She kept finding trouble and getting belted, it got to a stage where every race she was in the stewards report three or four times. A lot of it is caused by herself of course with her box manners but sometimes there is other dogs that just seem to want to run into you.”
He believes the break may have done her well and that she is racing as well as ever now. Butler also says it could be due to the variety in training methods.
“She may have went into last week just a little bit under-done. She injured a hip-support a couple of starts back and I feel like she was only about 90% for that race. I was very happy with the way she won though because she finished off the race so strong.”
“That is how I train them, a little bit different to how she would have been trained down in Sydney. I swim them a lot and do aerobic sort of stuff where Sid and Dean get into them with the work. We are completely different trainers but we both do the same job and get the same results. They did a great job down in Sydney and they are top-class trainers, they know what they are doing.”
Eleazar is by Bit Chili out of Cool Poss (Big Daddy Cool – Cool Kissy) and Butler says while Eleazar will definitely be a brood bitch down the track, there may still be more to come of her ilk.
“Her mother is still here with me, she has currently got four pups to Fear Zafonic and then I will be taking her to Lochinvar Marlow to get the cross back through Bombastic Shiraz and Brett Lee through Sensational Lee and line breed them back to Big Daddy Cool. Eleazar’s dam-line goes back to Kissy Bear and Bearability and has worked well for us with Big Daddy Cool.”
Eleazar has already won nine races for Butler and accumulated over $40,000 in prize-money in the process. When it comes to the big final on Thursday night, Butler summarised his hopes and prediction in one simple sentence.
“Like I said it is just good to be there but I’m really hoping for that clear run, if she can get that, she will show them something, I’m telling you.”
Yannick (box one) won the 1998 Tweed Heads Galaxy by six lengths, running 23.32 to set a new track record for the 420 metres at Border Park. Hiraani Blade, who would later be barred from racing at Wentworth Park after jumping the fence and trying to head off the lure in the back straight by galloping across the infield, finished second with Icy Prophet third and Maggiore fourth.
Tap Dance downed Gallant Ruler by two and a half lengths to win the 1994 Peter Mosman Memorial over 520 metres at Wentworth Park, running a race record 30.38 from box one.
Victorian stayer Totally Ablaze won the 1998 Albion Park Gold Cup (710 metres) by a neck from Queenslander Nujooloo with Tonight’s Wish third. Totally Ablaze, trained by Roger Nodzio, ran the trip in a fast 41.96, just 8/100ths outside the race record.
Coulta Colleen set a new track record time of 30.33 when winning over 525 metres at Broken Hill in 2001.
Mustard Moss took out the 1971 Journalist’s Cup (Best 8) over 790 yards (722 metres) at Wentworth Park in a fast 43.2. The Bill Fletcher-trained stayer downed 1970 NSW Greyhound of the Year Tara Flash by two and a half lengths with Fawn Mink third.
Worthy Reward won the first Peter Mosman Memorial final to be held on the new loam surface at Wentworth Park, in 1993. Worthy Reward defeated Rich Roulette and Pedictability in a slow 30.76 for the 520 metres.
Great Wish won the 1999 Peter Mosman Memorial by a whopping 10 lengths, running a fast 30.08 for the 520 metres, just 4/100ths outside the race record.
Farrago became the first greyhound to be earbranded in NSW, in 1951. He was given the number AB001. The plan was to try and prevent ‘ring-ins’ and would gradually be done to about 10,000 racing greyhounds in the state. The Greyhound Recorder claims Runaway Joe had been the first to be earbanded, on 2 May that year, by the NSW NCA, at Penrith. Runaway Joe, infamous for allegedly being a ring-in at Lismore in 1949, might well have been a test case and then Farrago, being a champion and very prominent, was used as the first ‘official’ earbrander.
Classy Victorian sprinter Solve The Puzzle blitzed a top-notch field to win the 1998 Peter Mosman Memorial at Wentworth Park. He downed fellow Victorian Adrenalin Storm by almost 10 lengths in 30.04, clipping a substantial 34/100ths off the previous race record. Lucy Lawless was third ahead of Fraud, Spoken Joe (later to set a track record at Wentworth Park) and Fibba.
Irish import Smooth Approach gave trainer Shirley Watkin her biggest success when annexing the 1975 Winter Stake by a length from Lord Beresford over 457 metres at Harold Park. Oberon Lad was 10 lengths further adrift in third place. Smooth Approach ran 26.49 to set a new race record.
Hotshow Vintage, from Victoria, won the 2001 Albion Park Gold Cup by a nose from Worldlee Man with NSW stayer Bronze Token a length and a half away third and fellow NSW stayer Pearl Larricki fourth. Hotshow Vintage collected $40,000 for trainer Jason Thompson.
Royal Kojak downed Star Wine by a head to win the 1987 Olympic Park Hurdle Championship, run over 511 metres. Revel’s Command was third with Weinberg fourth. The race was marred by three finalists falling.
Pied Rebel set a new track record of 23.8 for 440 yards (402 metres) at Tweed Heads in 1969 at only his third race start.
Garrick Bale won the 2012 Peter Mosman Memorial by seven lengths for trainer Andrea Dailly and earned $75,000, a 50 percent prize money hike from the previous year.
The John Young-trained Petite Panther won the 1970 Which Chariot Gold Cup final over 675 yards (617 metres) at Bulli by two lengths in 36.5.
Woolley Wilson held on to defeat Midnight Enemy by a head in the final of the 1972 Winter Stake (500 yards; 457 metres) at Harold Park. Woolley Wilson collected $2,500 first prize for trainer Geoff Watt.
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Race 1 – Mixed 4/5 515m 7.11pm
Smash Crash won well Monday night from the same box, and should repeat the dose. Allen Illem is bursting to win a race and one little mistake from Smash Crash will see Allen Illem finally salute. Dyna Hula can begin and will be thereabouts. Wrex Bale needs a wide box but will come home hard.
Top Four Selections: 2 – 8 – 6 – 1
Race 2 – Grade 6 515m 7.35pm
Tia Belle finally won here Monday night, box eight suits and she should lead and win again. Taser Mcbain’s run was good last start, also behind Tia Belle, so she should improve again. Woodside Jagger is unreliable but can win and Kenta Bale can fill fourth.
Top Four Selections: 8 – 4 – 5 – 7
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Tia Belle
Race 3 FFA 731m 7.55pm
Long Gully Surf is the strongest runner and can show dash early, if he gets clear he’ll win. Defib Daryl will likely find the top at some stage and will take catching. Zara Mclaren is well boxed and will pose a threat. Book Of Shadows has talent but we may not see it tonight.
Top Four Selections: 3 – 4 – 1 – 5
Race 4 – Grade 5 515m 8.14pm
This is the right race for As It Goes and she should win with any luck. If Avatar Kist can begin she can find the money. Stew’s Mistake is a fast dog, but it’s a mistake to back him from the middle. Tyson Willow can hold on for fourth.
Top Four Selections: 5 – 3 – 4 – 2
Suggested Bet: Win bet on As It Goes
Race 5 – Grade 5 515m 8.38pm
Lochinvar Impala has a motor but can be risky. Pepper Kahn is a great bitch who gives her all and from the red she’s a huge chance. Dream Choice is a fair dog, but finds it tough here and Infinite Power has shown enough to suggest she’ll win a few here in SA.
Top Four Selections: 7 – 1 – 3 – 2
Suggested Bet: 1,7/1,2,3,7/1,2,3,5,7
Race 6 – Grade 5 515m 8.58pm
Cool Promise has shown her ability winning here in 29.73 and if she slides up the rail early she should win again. Happy Skipper is a huge threat, if he pings and goes look out. Kalden Balerion is racing well so he’ll be in the mix, whilst WireGrass loves it out wide and should pose a threat at some stage.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 5 – 4 – 8
First Four: 1,5/1,4,5/1,4,5,8/field.
Race 7 – Grade 5 600m 9.22pm
Manila Express is a strong bitch who can round these up and win. Bally Swift is an interesting debutant who was formerly trained in QLD but was never tested over 600, she is bred to run 600 metres. Victa Victoria nearly got clear last week and if she does look out. Animate is a huge hope if she doesn’t get buried early.
Top Four Selections: 6 – 7 – 8 – 1
Race 8 – Grade 4 515m 9.41pm
Princess Tee was strong in her last win and generally has toe and can lead from out wide. Wild Soul is super strong but needs clear room early. Stop Scrammin’ will be running on and Gilbert Allen can find fourth.
Top Four Selections: 7 – 1 – 3 – 8
Suggested Bet: 1,7/1,7/3,8
Race 9 – Mixed 3/4/5 600m 10.05pm
Genghis Kahn was exceptional last start over the 600 metre trip when he raced and won like a genuine group dog. All he needs is clear running tonight and he’ll round up Fire Tyson and win. Fire Tyson is having his first go over 600 and on any other night he’d win, but not tonight. Victa Scott and Cool Duke are the best of the rest.
Top Four Selections: 6 – 1 – 3 – 4
First Four: 6/1/3,4/3,4
Race 10 – Grade 6 515m 10.24pm
Boojerooma should prove too classy here despite disappointing last start. Punishment is a super dog and will throw down a big challenge, whilst Buzz Kahn and Lektra Basset look the exotic hopes.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 6 – 4 – 8
Race 11 – Grade 6 515m 10.44pm
King Chaos was in all sorts of trouble last start and from the red tonight he should win. Footrot Fanning is a talented pup and will be in the firing line at the business end. Hashtag Harry and Max Tyson look the next best.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 6 – 2 – 3
Leg 1: 1,7
Leg 2: 1,5
Leg 3: 6,7,8
Leg 4: 1,7
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Race 1 – NOVICE 520m 6.42pm
There are some nice young chasers engaged in this. Good Call Paul is the top pick despite drawing box five. He’s been sparring with a few good dogs lately and although this is still a hard race, he’s been tackling better opposition. Velocity Mist is highly talented and if she runs out the 520 metre trip she’ll go close. Renatus is likely to be the forgotten dog, keep him real safe because he can win. Derek Zoolander was impressive first up, so he will be thereabouts.
Top Four Selections: 5 – 3 – 1 – 4
Suggested Bet: Win on Renatus
Race 2 – 5TH GRADE 520m 7.05pm
In a race with many chances, I’m going with Spring Caprice. She will be the value runner and on time form, is the quickest in the field. Box six will be tough, but with slow beginners all around, she can lead. Little Satisfies has shown ability and will get the gun run from the red. Outa Tempo is racing well and should be handy. Prince Harry has a big motor, however i doubt we will see it tonight.
Top Four Selections: 6 – 1 – 8 – 5
Suggested Bet: Eachway Spring Caprice
Race 3 – 5TH GRADE 520m 7.22pm
Rumble Street was beaten Monday night but I expect her to make amends here. She can begin quick enough to lead and once in front, they won’t catch her. Tejay’s Tiger is well drawn out wide and should be burning across early on. Jebrynah Storm will get a lovely drag over and should be finishing off. Dramatic Miss is the class dog, but will need luck from the middle draw.
Top Four Selections: 2 – 7 – 6 – 4
Race 4 – 5TH GRADE 520m 7.41pm
Bill’s Fantasy got to the the front Monday night and showed what he is capable of, with a 30.00 flat run. From the red, he should be to speedy again. Serious Tate is drawn well and if he pings, he can hold down second. Fine Cotton will get back early, but should be storming home and Swift Opulence is far to good to leave out.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 7 – 3 – 5
First Four: 1/3,5,7/3,5,6,7/3,4,5,6,7,8
Race 5 – FLYING AMY CLASSIC FINAL 520m 8.05pm
Angvella has the red and I expect him to win. He’s a dog with a motor and loves to rail, he can ping and lead all the way here. Happy Haswell is a talented pup, but will have to be exceptional from the squeeze tonight . You Say So has speed and is likely to be in the leading division at some stage. King Elliot might relish it out wide, so keep him very safe.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 4 – 3 – 7
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Angvella
Race 6 – 4/5 GRADE 710m 8.25pm
Late Angel Lee, Hougenie and Auriga Doll have this race all to themselves and the other Five runners are just making up numbers. Late Angel Lee is definitely getting stronger, but I still don’t think he’s a stayer. Auriga Doll is perfectly drawn and from out wide she can lob handy and prove to strong. Hougenie is strong and should be racing forward early. Betty’s Memory is the best of the rest.
Top Four Selections: 7 – 3 – 5 – 8
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Auriga Doll
First Four: 3,7/3,5,7/3,5,7/3,5,6,7,8
Race 7 – GOLD CUP FINAL 710m 8.44pm
The big one of the night and the possibility of a track record. If Xylia Allen leads like she’s supposed to, we could see her break another record. Mepunga Tiara was brilliant first up last week and is sure to improve again, whilst Infinite Wish will land handy early and can hold down her position. Eleazar is likely to power to the line.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 4 – 2 – 5
Race 8 – 3/4 GRADE 520m 9.08pm
Tough affair with a few winning hopes. Miner’s Moss should go forward early and will take plenty of catching. Peter’s Pick is the most talented runner but will get strung up early. Cyndie’s Special will be burning early and can hang on to a place. Bodyline should be working his way to the line late.
Top Four Selections: 4 – 2 – 3 – 5
Race 9 – 4/5 GRADE 600m 9.28pm
Charter grows a leg from the red box and will be mighty hard to beat. Premier’s Reign is well boxed and can begin, so expect her up their early. Aza Time is super moody but can’t be left out and Knave hits the line like a train.
Top Four Selections: 1 – 7 – 8 – 6
Race 10 – 5TH GRADE 520m 9.52pm
Tough race with many hopes. Washington Trick is racing superbly of late and can lead all the way. Sparkles is a talented bitch, and is drawn to return to form. Big Dac could be a hope if he jumps from out wide and Macgallen could fill fourth.
Top Four Selections: 3 – 1 – 8 – 6
Leg 1: 1,5
Leg 2: 3,7
Leg 3: 1
Leg 4: 1,2,4
$12.00 for 100%
Group one racing graces the environs of Albion Park this Thursday evening with the final of the 2014 Group One Gold Cup taking place.
The $75,000 to-the-winner event is run over the 710 metre journey and three Victorians, as well as a New Zealander will be taking on four locals in this year’s edition after last week’s heats.
The race has witnessed some quality stayers win in recent times, including Chinatown Lad (2008), Queen Lauryn (2009) and He Knows Uno (2012).
Victorian chasers have been dominant in the race in the last few years, winning three of the last four finals. Nellie Noodles won in 2010, Bobby Boucheau saluted in 2011 and Destini Fireball took out last year’s Gold Cup. They boast the two favourites this year and it will be no surprise to see the trophy heading south again.
Here is a look at the finalists with comments from the trainers;
|Comments: ARG opinion is – The undisputed queen of staying racing in Australia who seems to set track records for fun. With a clean getaway she will take a power of catching and if she is anywhere near her best is all but unbeatable. Clearly the big gun in this final.
|Comments: Angela Langton (Co-Trainer) – “I think if anyone can beat Xylia Allen she might be the one, but in saying that we have to really hope that she comes out well and then see what happens. We would probably still need Xylia Allen to miss the start a little bit and hope for some luck.”
|Comments: ARG opinion is – A swift beginner who likes to get to the rails early. She has some quality dogs drawn on her inside so she will need to be right on her game to be competitive in this race.
|Comments: Angela Langton (Co-Trainer) – “She will have to begin very well, she isn’t draw too bad because she lies to use a bit of the track so she won’t cut down on Infinite Wish. She is going to need a lot of luck though.”||
|Comments: Keiron Butler (Trainer) – “She just needs a bit of room getting to that first time. Everytime she races there she seems to feature in the stewards report three or four times. If she is within a few lengths of them down the back, they would want to be watching over their shoulders because she will be running home very well. I just hope we can get a clean crack at them.”
|Comments: ARG opinion is – A winner of just three from 18 career starts who is yet to taste victory over the half-mile. Is very likely to find most of these a little too good.||
|Set Her Again||
|Comments: Bruce Linnan (Trainer) - “Yeah well, she came out good last week, I think she ran the fastest first section and I don’t think the dog drawn on her outside is terribly fast away so hopefully we can get around them, that is our only chance. I was a little bit disappointed in her run last week, I think she was entitled to win once she led because she can run the time that they went, but maybe I saw box one and got a little bit too eager and over-worked her, she was a little bit flat. But each week is a different proposition.”
|Comments: James Shaw (Trainer) – “I think he is not drawn too badly out in the eight, I think the seven ran the fastest first sectional last week so hopefully we can gate a cart across. If we can have half a dozen dogs behind us as we pass the 700 metre boxes the second time then I think we are in with a hope.”
|Late Angel Lee||
|Comments: Front runner who has been struggling to run out a strong 700 in recent times. Is likely to be tested if he gets a go in this final.
|Comments: Is yet to win a 700 metre race to date. Is highly unlikely to be able to match it with the big guns in this one.
If Xylia Allen (1) jumps and runs anywhere near her best then we are more likely to see her break Dashing Corsair’s track record than for her to get beat. She is all class and only has to put it together on the night to give this field a donkey-licking.
Infinite Wish (2) could be the main danger if she steps well but her main worry is the dog drawn outside her. Golfing Amy (3) has the propensity to jump well and carve left and Infinite Wish will need to avoid her early.
Mepunga Tiara (4) could be afforded space early and can lead a field like this if Xylia Allen doesn’t. She is classy enough to hang on for a long way and could pinch it at big odds.
Know Class (8) needs to stay out of trouble early and find room to grind home in his dour style. He looks a place chance.
Set Her Again (7) is fast early and has registered a handy 41.83 here in the past, she could be another vying for the lead in the early speed battle.
Eleazar (5) will need a lot of luck in the run to be able to unleash his best and only looks a rough place chance, while Mullaway (6) looks hopelessly outclassed.
Race 1 ‚Äď 515M Restricted Win Heat ‚Äď 7:08PM
I think the Kelly Bravo trained Blurred Lines can get us off to a flying start. In a race which lacks genuine speed the normally reliable beginner Blurred Lines should have no trouble crossing in the early stages. In recent times his form doesn’t look too flashy but he has been racing against stronger company on the provincial circuit and tonight he
Classy youngster Kalaway Ernie (Knocka Norris – Trina Sage) completed a unique double when he was successful in the $5,000 to the winner Tasmanian Derby (515 metres) conducted at the LGRC meeting on Monday night. Several weeks earlier the Butch Deverell prepared chaser had prevailed in the prestigious Illingworth Classic conducted at the same venue, giving his fledgling owners, the Ulverstone based Nagars, a night to remember.
On Monday night Kalaway Ernie raced midfield, but railed home strongly to run down the Ted Medhurst prepared Real Caution (Dyna Lachlan – Topline Relly) within the shadows of the post to score a convincing victory in the time of 30.08. Arome Peche (Dyna Lachlan – Last Serenade), an occupant of the Shane Whitney kennel, ran a nice race to secure third prize.
“My bloke gave Real Caution three lengths start when they turned for home, but ran on in impressive fashion. He certainly is a promising type,” Deverell explained this week.
Bred By Hilton Gossage, the son of country football legend Barry Gossage, Kalaway Ernie is one of a highly successful litter that includes five individual winners and 24 races in total. They have combined for stakes in excess of $50,000 for the Ulverstone based Nagarsheaded by Kerry Lehman.
“I believe there are sixteen members of thewhich originated at the Ulverstone Golf Club. It is great for the industry to have first-time owners such as these experience some success,” Deverell said.
Meanwhile the astute Penguin based trainer will start Kalaway Ernie at next Monday night’s LGRC meeting and then venture to Melbourne with the chaser to contest The Maturity in July.
“He has done all I have asked of him and deserves a chance to race against the best, but his lack of early pace may prove to be his undoing.”
Moorleah based mentor Russell Watts was responsible for a great training feat at the LGRC meeting when chasers from his kennel ran the quinella in the Tasmanian Oaks (515 metres).
Silly Lucy (Premier Fantasy – Lady Arko) prevailed in the feature event in the time of 29.81 and Ireland’s Force (Kinloch Brae – Shanlyn Supreme) took second stake a half length away. Third prize was secured by the fast finishing Wynburn Loco (Collide – Hayley’s Girl) from the Ben England complex.
Meanwhile smart bitch Her Highness (Bartrim Bale – Witch Fantasy) continued on her winning way at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting when she completed a hat-trick of wins in the Grade 5 (452 metres) event.
Raced by Paul Westerveld and prepared at Broadmarsh by veteran trainer Keith Nichols, the bitch has now won five of her 10 outings and is displaying plenty of promise.
Nichols and Westerveld combined to also take out the next event on the card, the Grade 4 (452 metres) with Revelator (High Earner – Runway Model), which has now won six of 13 Tasmanian outings since debuting late last year.
Quick Advance (High Earner – Stylish Moon) returned to the winners list at the meeting when he proved too slick for his rivals in the Invitation (452 metres). He recorded a time of 25.74 in defeating the fast finishing Alvin Benz (Big Daddy Cool – Hot Octane) and Shanlyn Vapour (Vapour Whirl – Shanlyn Wilma), while paying the handsome win dividend of $5.40.
Raced by father and son combination Robert and Robin Grubb and prepared by the latter, he is a member of a highly successful litter which have taken all before them in Tasmania in recent times.
From the time of its inception, the Albion Park Gold Cup (originally the Gabba Gold Cup) has been a tough race. This is particularly so at the Albion Park track, where the 710 metres trip is considered one of the hardest in the country.
Over the years the race has been annexed by some of the champions of the ‘half mile’, and there have been quite a number of others who have failed to lift the trophy, Miata probably being the most notable of them all to fall into the latter category.
Night greyhound racing began in Queensland at the Gabba circuit in 1972, with races conducted on grass. In 1974 the Gabba Gold Cup, to be run over 704 metres, was introduced. That first cup final took place on 21 March with NSW stayer Captain Winter using box one to perfection as he raced away to score by five and a half lengths, defeating the two Queensland star stayers Refidex and Zepplin King. Captain Winter earned $5,000 for his connections.
Only two distances have been used. From 1974 to 1992 it was run over 704 metres on grass at the Gabba. From 1993 until the present it has been held over 710 metres on the sand at Albion Park.
When Is The Race Run
March and April were the months the event was conducted between 1974 and 1995, although the 1975 edition took place in May. Since 1996 the Cup final has been run in June.
The 1975 NSW Greyhound of the Year Dotie Wilson is the only greyhound to have won twice, scoring in 1975 from box two and again in 1976, also from box two. Dotie Wilson had a love affair with the Gabba circuit, racing there eight times for eight wins and collecting $20,345 in prize money from the venue. She was retired after winning that second cup.
Only Reserves to Win
None I’m aware of. The closest is Starry Eyes who went down by half a length to NSW stayer Rocket To Tubrid in 1990.
Biggest Winning Margins
Elusive Odie won the 1992 version by nine lengths, which was also the last conducted at the Gabba. Captain Winter’s five and a half length win in the inaugural event remains as the second widest winning margin with Mary Casey’s five lengths in 1989. As if to emphasise how tough the race has been at Albion Park, the biggest winning margin at this course has been the three and three-quarter lengths victory by Miss Brook (2006), followed by Boronia Blossom’s three and a half lengths in 1996 and Gary’s Hope (1988) and Trojan Tears (1994) by three and a quarter lengths.
Closest Winning Margins
If winning margins are rarely decisive, it stands to reason there will be quite a few close results. The closest finish has been the nose margin by Hotshow Vintage in 2001 while Total Denial (2002) won by half head, Picture This (1982) and High Monakii (1983) by a head and Totally Ablaze (1998) just a neck. Rocket To Tubrid (1990) and Queen Lauryn (2009) both scored by half a length.
Most Successful Trainers
Peter Giles with Amazing Dancer (2000) and Toss O’Reilly (2004) and Jim Canning with Dotie Wilson (1975 & 1976) are the only trainers with a double.
Dotie Wilson (Won 1975 & 1976), Bianca Lee (third 1981, second 1982), Quick Pulse (unplaced 1982 & 1983), Chantilly Miss (third 1989, unplaced 1990), Trojan Tears (second 1993, Won 1994), Salute The Stars (second 1994, unplaced 1995), Tonight’s Wish (unplaced 1997, third 1998), Questions (Won 1999, unplaced 2000), Bring The Bacon (unplaced 1999, third 2000), Miss Grub (third 2006, Won 2007), Miss Brook (Won 2006, second 2007), Chinatown Lad (Won 2008, unplaced 2009), Blue Lorian (third 2010, unplaced 2011)
Some Beaten Stars
Refidex (second 1974), Zepplin King (third 1974), Busy’s Chief (second 1975), Woolley Wong (fourth 1976), Kabisa Gem (sixth 1976), Bolta’s Gift (fourth 1977), Little Vogue (third 1979), Status Supreme (sixth 1982), Kirsty’s First (second 1986), Kirsty’s Charity (third 1988), Whip Tip (fourth 1988), Wary Suspect (fourth 1989), Modern Express (third 1992), Equability (sixth 1992), Raven Kelly (fifth 1994), Rob’s Rebel (seventh 1994), Dave’s Cruiser (fourth 1995), Nowhere To Go (third 1997), Nujooloo (second 1998), Ringside Fire (fifth 1998), Kobble Creek (second 1999), Smart Attitude (third 1999), Dalalla (fifth 1999), Osti’s Joker (second 2000), Pearl Larricki (fourth 2001), Bentley Babe (fifth 2001), Boomeroo (second 2002), Arvo’s Junior (fourth 2003), Irinka Barbie (second 2004), Springvale Jinx (sixth 2004), Texas Gold (second 2005), Rocky (third 2005), Best Quoted (fourth 2005), Malfoy (fifth 2005), Classy Customer (seventh 2005), Sargent Major (fourth 2006), Flashing Floods (fourth 2007), Fallen Zorro (second 2008), Mantra Lad (second 2009), Forty Twenty (fourth 2009), Dashing Corsair (second 2010), Jarvis Bale (fourth 2010), Miata (fifth 2012), Shimaguni (seventh 2012), Bell Haven (second 2013),Irma Bale (fifth 2013), Proven Impala (sixth 2013).
Although the race has been dominated by Victorian and NSW greyhounds it’s notable that the first greyhound to win the prestigious Sandown Cup and then go on to annex the Albion Park Gold Cup in the same year was the great Queensland stayer Boronia Blossom. She took out the 1996 Sandown Cup by half a head and then scored by three and a half lengths in her home distance cup seven weeks later.
Another dual winner in the same year is champion Tasmanian stayer Chinatown Lad who scored the double in 2008, in both races defeating littermate and kennelmate Fallen Zorro.
Bobby Boucheau took out the 2011 Sandown Cup and just three weeks later added the Albion Park Gold Cup to the mantelpiece.
NSW stayer Red Mystique won the 1997 Albion Park Gold Cup after finishing seventh in the Sandown Cup, but a year later took out the Sandown Cup.
Totally Ablaze was beaten half a length by Red Mystique in that 1998 Sandown Cup and then won the Albion Park Gold Cup by half a length.
Smart Attitude from NSW won the 1999 Sandown Cup and then finished third behind the smart Questions and Kobble Creek in Brisbane six weeks later.
Other Sandown Cup winners to have gone on to make the Brisbane final in the same year include Osti’s Joker (second to Amazing Dancer in 2000), Bentley Babe (fifth to Hotshow Vintage in 2001), Jennev (fifth to Total Denial in 2002), Arvo’s Junior (fourth to Dooley’s Mist in 2003), Best Quoted (fourth to Last Quoted in 2005), Sargent Major (fourth to Miss Brook in 2006), Mantra Lad (second to Queen Lauryn in 2009) and Irma Bale (fifth to Destini Fireball in 2013).
Foster carers are some of the most important people in the greyhound industry. They are responsible for introducing greyhounds to their new lives as pets and WA trainer Linda Britton knows the great importance the Greyhounds As Pets (GAP) programme has in the industry.
On Sunday Britton opened her kennels up to 30 lucky foster carers so they could experience the life of a racing greyhound, as well as getting to see some of the young pups.
‚ÄúIt was basically to give the foster carers the chance to see how greyhounds are in training, in the hope that it will help with the transition to a pet home. It was also a great chance to see that it‚Äôs a myth that greyhounds are mistreated here.‚ÄĚ Linda Britton explained.
‚ÄúIt was also for us to see where our dogs are going because we do get attached to them too. They are in our lives for up to four years and we really like to know where they go after they finish with us.‚ÄĚ
The GAP open day involved a tour around Britton‚Äôs property to see the dog kennels and empty out yards, as well as the massage mats for the dogs that had many foster carers look on in amazement. Retired chaser Tonka Truck put on a show on the straight track, showcasing his short burst of energy for the crowd. The day ended with lunch and conversation between everyone about their greyhounds.
‚ÄúIt was great to hear stories about where our past dogs had gone. We also had a few owners there mingling so they could share stories about their experiences.‚ÄĚ
Sofiana Alford was one of the lucky foster carers that came along to see Britton‚Äôs kennels. She has had three of Britton‚Äôs past chasers go through her home as foster dogs. Art, who raced as Rousay, Wabbit as Cool Wabbit and more recently Pongo, who raced as Moss Vale. All three chasers had successful careers earning upwards of $50,000 each.
‚ÄúLinda likes to know about her dogs as well. It‚Äôs awesome how she wants to know how her old dogs are going in foster care, it shows that trainers do care.‚ÄĚ Sofiana Alford explains.
‚ÄúGoing through the kennels it showed how much work goes into just one greyhound let alone 80 greyhounds. I was amazed that the kennels were really clean, even the puppy yards were dog poo free!‚ÄĚ
Alford has been foster caring for about four years now and she believes that the most rewarding part of teaching the greyhounds about life at home is seeing them find their forever homes.
After constant speculation that the greyhound industry doesn‚Äôt look after their racing greyhounds, Alford was able to make her own judgement on the kennels and the environment some of her foster dogs have come from.
‚ÄúMy thoughts about racing have changed; I got to see that the dogs were really well looked after. It‚Äôs not as bad as what people are making it out to be. It was awesome going out there, they love their dogs more then people!‚ÄĚ
With such a positive response from the foster carers Britton would love to make her GAP open day a regular event.
‚ÄúEspecially for new foster carers so they can have a better understanding of greyhound, because they do get challenged when they are walking around, being asked why they would have anything to do with Greyhounds WA because it‚Äôs such a cruel sport. They get to experience themselves that it isn‚Äôt cruel and that the dogs are well looked after.‚ÄĚ Britton explained.
‚ÄúThe day was above what I expected. I didn‚Äôt have any negative questions and I was wrapt with the response. The people were lovely and genuinely cared for the dogs and that‚Äôs what we love to see.‚ÄĚ
The open day was filled with an overwhelming love for greyhounds as a breed. One couple that deals with trouble foster dogs spoke about how hard it was to let the dogs go and how close they had come to a number of dogs, to the point of wanting to keep them themselves. It came down to one statement that summed up foster caring perfectly, acting as a constant reminder that there are other greyhounds out there that need to learn the ropes of retirement too.
The day we find a dog we don‚Äôt want to let go, that will be the last greyhound we can teach to be a pet.
Some of Queensland’s most promising sprinters will line up for a crack at the $22,500 first prize in the listed Flying Amy Classic at Albion Park this Thursday evening.
If times are any guide, there is not a lot between the octet of runners, with just 1 1/2 lengths separating the three heat winners.
The quality does not end with the eight finalists either, with Queensland Derby winner Flash Reality waiting in the wings as first reserve should anyone withdraw. He went very close to the track record mark a few weeks back and could win this as he pleases if he gains a start and finds his best form.
The race will be race five on the card and is scheduled to jump at 8:05pm
Here is a look at each runner in detail;
1 ‚Äď Angvella ‚Äď Christina Harman ‚Äď A winner of six races from just 15 starts who ran on well for a placing last week. The son of Just The Best and Joy Esme (Fortified Rush ‚Äď Marine Queen) has won four of 11 at the track with a personal best of 29.97. The 31kg brindle dog moves to a much more suitable box this week and could represent each-way value at a nice price. He has won his only start from box one in slick time at Ipswich. He looks to be the value runner here.
2 ‚Äď You Say So ‚Äď Peter Ruetschi ‚Äď One of three runners for the high-flying Ruetschi kennel who ran on well for a second to Nala’s Heart in last week’s heat. He is from the successful Outa Credit ‚Äď Where Are You (Hallucinate ‚Äď Duel’s Me Mum) litter and has won five from 22 at the track with a further 11 placings. He is consistent but does not win out of turn and a place chance appears more likely than winning this one.
3 – You Can Talk ‚Äď Peter Ruetschi ‚Äď A littermate to You Say So who was beaten 5 3/4 lengths by Happy Haswell in last week’s heat. She is a very consistent bitch who has won 13 of her 27 career outings and eight of 16 at Albion Park. Her best is only 30.12 which she may need to improve upon to be winning a race like this.
4 ‚Äď Happy Haswell ‚Äď Reg Kay ‚Äď Set the standard in the heats with a sharp 30.15 win despite not having the clearest run to the first turn. The regally bred son of Surf Lorian and Teenage Dream (Knocka Norris ‚Äď Size ‘Em Up) has an imposing record with five wins from six starts and has already registered a handy 29.95 at this track. If there is a question mark over him it will be whether or not he can get to the first turn relatively unimpeded or not. If he can manage that, he will be the one to beat.
5 ‚Äď Nala’s Heart ‚Äď Robert Handyside ‚Äď Finished powerfully to land her heat win last week in 30.23. This striking blue fawn daughter of Surf Lorian and Perfect Thrill (Hallucinate ‚Äď Gorgas) has now won three at Albion Park, including her last two and has a best of 29.99. She can show enough early speed to put herself in the picture and is definitely worthy of consideration.
6 ‚Äď Give You Credit ‚Äď Peter Ruetschi ‚Äď The third runner from not only the Peter Ruetschi kennel, but also from the Outa Credit ‚Äď Where Are You (Hallucinate ‚Äď Duel’s Me Mum) litter. He was forced to go three wide on the home turn last week when running on well to finish 2 1/4 lengths second to Happy Haswell. He is another who does not really win out of turn with six victories from his 25 starts, but he will definitely be doing his best work in the concluding stages. His place chances look better than his winning ones.
7 ‚Äď King Elliot ‚Äď Reg Hazelgrove ‚Äď Caused a boilover last week in his heat, leading all the way to defeat some very handy conveyances in the time of 30.26, which is a personal best. He has won three of his five starts from box seven which would suggest that the outside draw should not be too much of an issue and has a handy career record of nine wins from 20 starts. His early speed is the key to his chances and he will need to get a clean break and possibly hope for trouble behind to be any winning chance.
8 ‚Äď Super Vision ‚Äď Peter Young ‚Äď Looks the rank outsider of the field with just two wins to her name from 20 starts. She appeared to have every hope last week when third to Nala’s Heart, finishing 3 3/4 lengths away from the winner. Her two wins have come from inside boxes and this simply looks too hard.
9 ‚Äď Flash Reality ‚Äď Tony Brett ‚Äď This dog is likely to start a short-priced favourite if he gains a start and would be the one to beat regardless of the box he may draw. He had won five in a row here before his third last week, including a near-record 29.58 run. Should he manage to get a call-up, he is the dog to beat.
10 ‚Äď Renatus ‚Äď Robin Palmer ‚Äď A 24-month-old veteran of just five starts with one win to his name. He finished fourth to Nala’s Heart last week in his heat beaten some four lengths. This race looks too tough for him at this stage of his career.
Selections ‚Äď 4-1-5-3
In a career spanning a mere 14 months, Top Linen proved himself to be one of the fastest sprinters of his time, setting or equalling track records at the Bradman-like rate of one every two and a half starts.
A white and brindle dog by Fine Linen out of Brenda Gay, Top Linen was whelped in May 1955. Owned by Doug Hobden and trained throughout his career by Bob Cann, Top Linen began racing by winning his maiden over 320 yards (293 metres) up the Richmond straight on 30 March 1957. Dawn box two in a 10-dog field, Top Linen bolted away to score by five lengths in 16.5, the equal fastest of the day.
At his next six starts Top Linen scored twice and finished second on three occasions, including his first city start, over 500 yards (457 metres) at Harold Park.
Top Linen burst into notice on 1 June when he took out the 410 yards (375 metres) Championship, run up the Richmond straight. He scored by six lengths and ran 21.0, just 1/10th outside the track record. It was a portent of things to come.
Two weeks later, Top Linen returned to Richmond and defeated Jimmy Jewel by three-quarters of a length with 1957 Bi-Annual Classic (now the Peter Mosman Memorial) winner Fine Earl three lengths away third. His time of 20.9 set new figures for the 410 yards trip.
On 29 June, Top Linen exited last out of box six in a 10-dog field over 500 yards for his second start at Harold Park, but finished well to run a three-lengths fourth behind Logan River.
After a third placing at Muswellbrook, Top Linen returned to Harold Park on 20 July. From box nine he began well and was up running fourth into the first bend. Sweeping off the circle he sped to the lead and raced away to score by eight lengths in 26.65, the best time of the night.
Two weeks later he was graded into an Invitation Stake (made up of the best greyhounds nominated, at the discretion of the grader) at Harold Park. From box five he was last away but had moved to fifth by the first bend. Top Linen charged to the front halfway down the long home straight and careered away to defeat Red Namoi (later a 1957 Melbourne Cup finalist) by three and a half lengths. Top Linen stopped the clock at 26.50, equalling the track and world record for 500 yards. This time had been set in October 1948 by China Lady and equalled by the great Macareena in 1953 and twice in 1954 by Plunkett’s Pride (who had been beaten a neck into third place in the 1954 Bi-Annual Classic).
Top Linen returned to Harold Park on 29 August and scored a comprehensive victory, again defeating Red Namoi. Heavy rain had made the track slow but his time of 26.76 was the best of the night.
After a short break he was once again back at Harold Park, on 6 October, but was beaten a head by the very smart Magic Babe in a fast 26.61.
That race proved to be his last for almost five months.
Top Linen resumed on 22 February 1958 in an Invitation Stake at Harold Park. It was a tough ask to get him to be at his top for his first race in almost 20 weeks, and he was beaten a length and a half into third place by Magic Babe and the brilliant Montana Jet.
Magic Babe had run second in the 1957 Victorian Guineas and would go on to finish second to the champion Rookie Rebel in the inaugural Australian Cup just over a month later. Montana Jet had run second to Rookie Rebel in the 1957 Melbourne Cup and would go on to win the Vic Peters Memorial Classic later in the year.
Top Linen returned to the winning list on 15 March, winning up the straight over 330 yards (301 metres) at Wyong and then winning over 440 yards (402 metres) at Maitland four days later.
He next proved himself the best drag lure greyhound in the country by annexing the 410 yards Championship at Wyong, winning by three lengths in 21.1 to equal the track record.
Top Linen made it two track records in a row when he sped over the Maitland 440 yards course on 26 March to win by eight lengths and equal the track mark of 23.4.
After scoring up the straight at Richmond, Top Linen made his long-awaited return to Harold Park. In pouring rain he exited box one and raced away to win by six lengths in 26.73, the best time of the night.
Drawn in his first Harold Park Stake (top grade only) on 30 April, Top Linen scored by two and a half lengths and stopped the clock at 26.40, a new track and world record. This time standard stood for seven years.
On 2 May Top Linen won by three lengths over 440 yards at Maitland and ran 23.3 to equal the new course record.
Ten days later he contested what would be the longest race of his career, over 525 yards (480 metres) at Cessnock, winning by eight lengths in 27.9, a new track record.
With five track records from his past seven starts, Top Linen was regarded as the best greyhound in NSW. Victorians believed Rookie Rebel was their best and so a match race was arranged to decide which was indeed the best.
Arrangements were quickly finalised and it was intended that two match races would be run. The first would be over 500 yards at Harold Park, with the second over 675 yards (617 metres) at North Melbourne.
The two champions met in battle at Harold Park on 31 May. Top Linen exited box two and in a devastating display of sheer speed he led all the way to defeat Rookie Rebel by six lengths. Once more he ran 26.40, thereby equalling his own track and world record.
Unfortunately, just over a week later, Rookie Rebel broke two toes in running second over 675 yards at North Melbourne and was retired.
With nothing left to achieve, Top Linen was also retired to what would prove a brilliant stud career.
Top Linen raced 26 times for 18 wins, four seconds, and two thirds. He won his last 10 starts in succession and had set or equalled seven track records on five circuits.
Among his most notable progeny were Black Top, Keen Linen, Blue Autumn, Good Nip, Old Tops, and Goldent.
Brilliant Victorian chaser Hooksy justified his short odds at Wentworth Park last night in a heat of the Group One Peter Mosman Classic, recording best of the night figures of 29.47. Stepping beautifully from box five, the son of Hondo Black and Uno Witch clocked sizzling sectionals of 5.34 and 17.66, coming home in a solid 11.81. The Tanya Auld trained speedster notched up his fourteenth win from twenty starts and has a healthy prizemoney total of $80,880.
Heat one went to in-form chaser Push It for Dean Swain, who continued his winning ways, recording his fourth consecutive victory at Wentworth Park in a speedy 29.81. Beginning brilliantly from box eight, the daughter of Collision and Low Gee Eye quickly crossed her rivals to score comfortably by three lengths at the finish. $1.90 favourite Keybow missed the start and got squeezed out at the first turn, before making up solid ground to finish second and move through to next week’s semi finals.
Zipping Delta was also looking to continue her winning streak and was flawless from box one in heat two as the $2.20 favourite, racking up consecutive win number three. The daughter of Bekim Bale and Scarlett Spy was never headed in a dominant display, clocking 29.49. Jason Mackay’s chaser recorded an impressive run home of 11.70 and takes her win tally to nine from 26 starts. Glenn Rounds All Strung Out was gallant in defeat, reducing the winning margin to just one length and will be a forced to reckon with in the semi-finals next week, clocking an outstanding time of 29.55.
Punters heavily supported Darren McDonald’s Tiggerlong Amigo, starting as the $1.90 favourite in heat three, however he failed to fire from box three and finished in fifth position. Rank $17.00 outsider My Awesome Opal stunned enthusiasts by taking out the heat in 30.08 from box eight. The Marie Burton trained chaser began fast from box eight and crossed her rivals at the first turn to lead all the way and salute by five and three quarter lengths. Another $17.00 outside in Hilda’s Boy chased hard and finished in second position.
In-form chaser Cawbourne Whip continued her outstanding run, clocking a flying 29.50 in heat four from box three. The Jodie Lord owned and trained daughter of Dyna Lachlan sped to the front and charged home in a brilliant run home of 11.62. She has now won her last four straight races and has 13 career wins from just 23 starts. Aurora Girl was very impressive from box two and reduced the winning margin to three and a quarter lengths, clocking 29.70.
Tommy Brislane is one of the most promising pups New South Wales at present, notching up his sixth career win last night from just seven starts. Stepping beautifully from box three, the Steve White trained chaser impressed once again in a fast time of 29.71. This consistent son of Premier Fantasy saluted by three and a half lengths over second placegetter Stilton Blue. The $2.20 favourite Deadly Vane found severe early trouble and tailed off to the back of the field.
All eyes will be on the box draw for next week’s three semi-finals, with Hooksy now favourite to take out the Group One $75,000 final on June 21.
What exactly is the purpose of Non Penalty races in Victoria?
Just to take a brief example, at last Thursday’s meeting at Sandown ‚Äď a normal high standard one ‚Äď winners averaged 29.57. Three days later at the usual Sunday Non Penalty meeting they averaged 29.64. Nothing much in that. There was no clear difference in the state of the track but the Thursday dogs would certainly have had greater experience. On the other hand, the Sunday meeting also included two maiden events.
A natural conclusion would be that there was plenty of ability around on Sunday, leading to the question of why the races were not conducted under normal 5th Grade conditions. The answer is shrouded in mystery.
One outcome is that Non Penalty winners are free to go around in yet another NP race, or to compete in 5th Grade races anywhere else in the state without carrying with them any upgrading penalty ‚Äď ie they obviously can win more low grade races. Still, that is a prime objective of the unusual Victorian system, and no doubt an attraction for immigrants from other states.
But let’s go back to that mysterious past.
NP meetings emerged from nowhere over a decade ago, apparently with the aim of providing an outlet for dogs which either wanted experience in the city or which could not otherwise gain a spot in the regular weekly meetings at each of Sandown and The Meadows. No doubt the clubs were also pressing for more opportunities to use their expensive facilities.
At the outset, the two clubs were granted one NP meeting each fortnight and prize money was assessed at much lower than provincial levels. Obviously authorities did not want to upset the balance unduly. Nominations came almost equally from youngsters on a learning curve and oldies returning from injury or needing to regain form.
However, the next stage moved the NP frequency from one to two each week and then prize money was moved up to full provincial levels. Generally, that improved the standard of races but it came at a great cost. Field standards dropped at provincial clubs, something which continues to this day, as the pathway to wealth was always going to be via the city clubs.
More recently, the NP principle has been extended to all clubs, along with the introduction of T3 races, which are restricted to dogs which have shown they cannot run fast. The resultant package, which included extra races, meant that average field standards in the state continued falling. A double whammy, in effect.
From a cash viewpoint, there was no noticeable shortfall as the era paralleled the rise and rise of mug gamblers as a proportion of the betting public. Not only did the modestly performed dogs serve the newcomers’ purpose but they also bet equally as much on maiden races. All these factors have contributed to the general increase in races offered, albeit they were staffed by a higher percentage of inferior dogs.
So the NP concept led directly or indirectly to a number of things:
¬∑ Wider opportunities for dogs wanting access to city tracks.
¬∑ More opportunities for low standard dogs.
¬∑ More statewide income as authorities filled gaps in the TAB program with extra races.
¬∑ Greater utilisation of tracks due to higher meeting frequency.
¬∑ A decrease in field standards everywhere, including in the city.
¬∑ A decrease in the size of betting pools, whether in the city or the country.
Of all these factors, the most critical have been the dubious nature of field standards where, for example, Novice dogs now even fill holes in major city meetings, and where provincial clubs are left with less to promote to both local and SKY/TAB consumers. Amongst other reasons, these factors must have prompted the decline in serious punter numbers, and certainly weakened week-round patronage.
Whatever the reasons, and whatever your point of view, it is inescapable that there is no natural growth in industry income, no growth in dog numbers (good or bad), and little or no effort to build a product which might attract discerning customers. Yes, there have been some advances here and there in efficiency but they have been more than outweighed by the negatives.
As we have mentioned here previously, the 120-plus different grades offered in Australia have emerged primarily because one or other authority thought “it would be a good idea” at the time, always prompted by a perceived need to keep all the owners and trainers happy, not by any particular customer demand. That was underlined even further when NSW recently installed not one but another three Grades for “Masters” (meaning veterans) events after ignoring that potential for many years. That’s a sledgehammer to crack a nut, if ever I saw one.
For their part, customers have been left mostly with a package of four-legged poker machines. That’s been fine for those able to press a button, but not of much use for anyone with half a brain.
Aside from the sorry nature of our track layouts, the long term worry is twofold; authorities and clubs have failed to consider the long term impacts of their policies, and they have been unable to create more innovative approaches to the need to improve the racing product and related services.
Separately, the NSW parliamentary inquiry has touched only the tip of this iceberg but we may get more encouragement when its financial outlook appears at the end of the month.
Using modern science like GPS, that is.
Rumour has it that Greyhounds Australasia Ltd recently talked about the need for a serious study into the art of track design.
It can only be a rumour as GAL, the code’s only national body, seldom talks about what it does. No meeting agendas are published. Few decisions are announced, and then only for matters limited to veterinary subjects, drug investigations or, in the latest case, greyhound welfare programs.
The veterinary area is further limited by a GAL policy to deal only with the Australian Greyhound Veterinary Association (AGVA) and not with other organisations, including universities. In itself, that policy severely restricts the advancement of the sport, given that AGVA is comprised of members who are, by definition, tied up with current industry participants or organisations in one way or another. Conflicts of interest would be present and innovative thinking put at risk.
On the other hand, universities would in theory and practice be keen to engage with outside organisations such as racing authorities, provided only that they get sufficient encouragement. That was the case with Sydney University when it conducted investigations into the use of whips in thoroughbred racing. But it got no such support when GAL refused to deal with it on a suggested subject a year or so ago. Noteworthy also is that projects selected by final year students normally include a large number of dog breeds but none of the greyhound.
Still, going back to the welfare issue, GAL’s recently announced a push into the national sphere of the recent moves by NSW and Victoria to improve regulations and practices. It included a string of measures aimed solely at trainers and their kennels ‚Äď all to “to help ensure continued improvement in greyhound welfare outcomes”. Nice but narrow.
Even the recent NSW parliamentary inquiry identified problems with tracks, especially those with bend starts, as important factors in racing injuries ‚Äď surely a welfare issue, as well as a public relations challenge.
These days, the creation of good, reliable and trouble free tracks is one of the few major influences on the code’s future that still lie in the hands of the industry’s managers. Pretty well everything else is controlled by TABs and corporate bookmakers. Unfortunately, those betting organisations have now run out of puff; tote takings are in decline, alternative betting such asare a financial rip-off for punters and have probably done their dash now, the weekly racing program is already jammed full, expansion is limited to strange and unknowable international events at odd hours, and sportsbetting is on the rise.
So where will future growth come from? The only logical answer is from more betting from existing customers and the attraction of new customers, preferably big spending ones.
To bring that about, it is plain that, as well as better marketing, greyhound racing has to offer a more reliable set of outcomes ‚Äď ie tracks which enable more interference-free races ‚Äď which then encourage serious punters to take part.
Obviously that would cost money, but going down that road is likely to be far more rewarding over the long term than doing nothing. In any event, many changes are possible before moving into the million dollar category.
For example, let’s pick out one of the worst problems and use that as a test case. There are plenty of other options but the 600m trip at The Meadows offers multiple opportunities. Its first 100m are invariably a shocking mess as eight dogs try to negotiate space sufficient for half that number. Push and shove are extreme and penalties are always enough to force one or more runners out of the competition completely.
The underlying point is that middle distance racing has become more and more popular over the last decade, indicating that dogs and their trainers, as well as punters, would like to see more of them ‚Äď but not when they get smashed at the start. That popularity, incidentally, is also being affected by the fact that 700m racing is clearly beyond the capacity of the vast majority of the current dog population, including many of today’s big race winners.
So the challenge is to get out the jack hammers and the concrete mixers, pull that 600m start out and move it around to a spot which allows the field to get a good look down the upcoming straight. Never mind all the mountains and cliffs in the way, just use your nous and do it.
Going back to the track study, we have previously outlined in these columns how greyhound racing lags far behind other codes of racing and virtually all other sports in the way it has failed to modernise and improve its layouts. We pointed out that the technology and the science were basically there to be used, just as the AFL and the NRL have employed GPS monitoring of player movements and used firms like Sportsdata and Champion data to create analysis programs.
But there is more.
Now the Australian Institute of Sport has built a new system based on multi-camera pictures which feed into computers the moves by every player on the field and then pass that on to coaches for evaluation.
Nicole Jeffery in The Australian (June 6) reports that “leading AFL and NRL clubs already use GPS for competition analysis but (AIS sports scientist) Stuart Morgan says the camera data is superior because it allows coaches to track the movements not only of their own players but also of the opposition”.
“We were looking for a non-invasive way to track athletes, how fast they run, how far they run during a game, where they were during set plays, what the opposition is doing from a tactical point of view”, says Morgan.
All this sounds like stuff that track designers could readily use to assess what works well on a greyhound track and what doesn’t, even second-guessing the dogs.
Can we afford not to use it?
He was the dog that everyone wanted to watch and the dog that carried more expectation into the race than any other. He followed on from his impressive heat win last week and duly delivered the goods.
Dewana Result, at just his fifth start, earned his first sample of black-type glory when he took out the $25,000 listed Northern Districts Cup at Shepparton on Saturday night for Edithvale trainer Brendan Dewan.
While reading the result on paper might make it appear as though it was an all-the-way romp for the son of Cosmic Rumble and Wildcard Lass (Primo Uno ‚Äď Pauline), in reality it was another great show of track sense beyond his tender age of just 23 months.
Leaving box six in sixth place, Dewana Result looked to have a mountain of work to do over the short 450 metre trip, especially after copping a small amount of interference in the initial 50 metres.
However, just as he did in his heat, the hulking 37kg black dog whipped around the field in the twinkling of an eye and sped away from early leaders Who Told Blackie (4) and Symmetry Lad (2).
By the time he reached the line, Dewana Result had put seven lengths on his nearest rival to score in the time of 25.18. Symmetry Lad stuck on as well as could be expected for second while Who Told Blackie, who had also raced close to the speed, finished third.
It was Dewana Result’s fourth win from just five career outings and takes his prize-money earnings past $28,000. If his tardy box manners do not become his biggest enemy, the speedy youngster could be a star in the making.
1st ‚Äď Dewana Result (6) ‚Äď Brendan Dewan
2nd ‚Äď Symmetry Lad (2) ‚Äď Sharon Kaliszewski
3rd ‚Äď Who Told Blackie (4) ‚Äď Michael Fothergill
4th ‚Äď Grand Legacy (8) ‚Äď Peter Daprain
5th ‚Äď Quick Hitch (5) ‚Äď Sandra Waycott
6th ‚Äď Xtreme Knocka (7) ‚Äď Jason Thompson
7th ‚Äď Kracken Concord (1) ‚Äď Kevin Eyles
Fell ‚Äď Be Up (9) ‚Äď David Warburton
1st Split: 6.62 (4)
2nd Split: 11.41 (2)
Margins: 7 x 3/4
Scratchings: Overdrive (3), Coup D’Etat (10). Be Up (9) started from box three.
The coveted Group One Peter Mosman Classic heats will kick off tonight at Wentworth Park, with an enticing $75,000 on offer for winning connections in three weeks time.
Six competitive heats will be conducted over the 520m distance, with the first four placegetters moving through to next week‚Äôs three semi-finals.
To be eligible for the series all runners were required to be born on or after 1st December 2011.
Heat one will jump at 8.07pm.
Group One Perth Cup winner Keybow returns to Wentworth Park for the first time since contesting the Golden Easter Egg heats back in April and comes off a second placing in the Group Two Queensland Derby a month ago. Darren McDonald‚Äôs charge has a sizzling 29.45 personal best at the track and will be primed for this event from box three. My Kinda Music attracted plenty of attention during the New Sensation series at Wentworth Park in April, where she finished third behind the freakishly talented Hookesy in 29.36. Trained by Allan Pringle, the daughter of El Grand Senor and Ice Dancer recorded a flying 29.69 at headquarters last month.
Push It will be looking for her fourth straight win at the track after an impressive 29.70 performance last week from box three. Despite not having won from the outside alley, Dean Swain‚Äôs talented chaser has an excellent Wentworth Park record of three wins from six starts and the exceptional early pace to cross from out wide.
Chica Destacada has returned to her brilliant best and produced a sensational 29.49 performance at the track two weeks ago, with an equally impressive 29.51 win the week prior. Doreen Drynan‚Äôs chaser has an outstanding record at headquarters with five wins from nine starts and despite the awkward box six, has enough early pace to trouble this classy field.
Jason Mackay‚Äôs Zipping Delta has come up with the coveted red rug and produced an outstanding 29.59 performance last week and a 30.61 run at Richmond the week before. The daughter of Bekim Bale will be doing her best work at the finish, so look for her to flash home. All Strung Out will be looking for his fourth straight win after solid performances at Warragul and Sandown Park over the past three weeks. He comes into this heat with plenty of confidence and will exit from box three.
Darren McDonald has another strong hope in this heat with Tiggerlong Amigo, who has an excellent career record of nine wins from eighteen starts and has won four of his past five outings. An impressive 29.72 stewards trial at Wentworth Park on Monday and a handy box three draw makes this son of Cosmic Chief a huge threat to take out this heat. Oh So Striking comes off a win at the track on Monday night in 30.07 and recorded a flying 29.56 at Gosford last month, giving trainer Darren Sultana plenty of reasons to favour this son of Cosmic Rumble‚Äôs chances. Having won five of nine career starts, this greyhound can be risky at box rise, but has a huge motor that should see him figure at the finish. Hilda‚Äôs Boy shocked everyone with a near record 29.32 win at Gosford two weeks ago and a repeat of that performance should see this son of Just The Best challenging this field.
Cawbourne Whip is in red-hot form at present and comes off a blistering 29.38 win at Wentworth Park last week and will only need to step cleanly to claim this affair for trainer Jodie Lord. The daughter of Dyna Lachlan and American Spot has a superb record at the track of four wins from seven starts and will be looking for her fourth straight win. Aurora Girl has a fast 29.72 personal best at the track which was recorded two weeks ago and is ideally drawn near the rails, with all of her career wins coming from boxes one and three. Trained by Marie Burton, the daughter of Cosmic Rumble can be risky at box-rise; however can find her way to the finish.
Lady Goldenpaw makes her debut at Wentworth Park for Victorian trainer Robert Britton and has some impressive personal best times, including 29.66 at Sandown Park, recorded back in March. The daughter of High Earner has good early pace and will need to use it, exiting from the awkward box six.
Group Three New Sensation winner Hookesy returns to Wentworth Park for the first time since captivating the greyhound world with some sizzling performances around the two turn circuit, including a blistering personal best of 29.36. The son of Hondo Black trained by Tanya Auld, will have to overcome the testing box five, however should demonstrate another superb performance as one of the series favourites.
Unbelief has come up with the red rug and has an excellent Wentworth Park record of four wins from six starts and saluted impressively last week in 29.79. Rue De Kahn has produced solid form of late and last month recorded a flying personal best of 29.64. The Group One National Futurity winner has the ability to cross from the outside alley and push for a semi-finals berth next week.
Tommy Brislane is airbourne at present, having won four of his past five outings, including a 29.74 performance at Wentworth Park and an equally impressive 26.17 win at Bulli. The son of Premier Fantasy and Mary Virginia has an outstanding career record of five wins from six starts and will give trainer Steve White a huge chance of making the semi-finals. Stilton Blue comes off a second placing in the Group Three Bulli Gold Plate and has a solid personal best at the track of 29.82.
Golden Easter Egg winning trainer Brooke Ennis returns to Wentworth Park with the talented Deadly Vane, who will exit from box eight and comes off an brilliant win at Shepparton in 25.05. The winner of 13 races from 22 starts has the pace to cross from the wide draw and will have plenty of watchers as he makes his Wentworth Park debut.
A big Saturday of greyhounds is headlined by the Peter Mossman heats, and Sportsbet has a big offer.
Place a win or each-way bet on the Peter Mossman heats (Races 3-8)this Saturday night and get a 20% bonus on your first winning bet.
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Race 1 – 520M Mixed 4/5 – 7:30PM
Ritza Raider has a great turn of foot soon after box-rise and from box eight he should get plenty of room in the early stages. Five starts ago he looked impressive when scoring here in 29.90 from a wide draw and he appears well placed in this company.
Knot Telling Ya is ideally drawn and he is armed with a brilliant finishing burst. In recent times he has experienced limited luck and from the red he should be afforded a clearer passage in the early stages. Kobi Jay is a consistent type and he is nearing another win. The only knock on him is that he has a very bad tendency to bomb the start.
Top Four: 8 – 1 – 4 – 6
Win bet on Ritza Raider
Trifecta: 1,8/1,8/Field ($12 for $1)
Race 2 – 720M Grade 5 – 7:50PM
Little Red is facing an enormous drop in class and she has won here previously in a more than handy 42.46. She hasn’t been racing too well of late but the smaller field will suit and there doesn’t appear to be a lot of depth in this event.
Billy Style has a poor record here but like Little Red he has been racing in much stronger company and he is proven that he can run the 700m journey out strongly. He is likely to get back in the field but there are three runners in this field who I think will get very tired late in the race.
Top Four: 8 – 4 – 5 – 7
Win bet on Little Red
Race 3 – 520M Special Event Heat – 8:07PM
Keybow is one of the fastest chasers in the country but tonight he has a lot of speed drawn outside of him and I think he may find a lot of bother in the early stages. My Kinda Music consistently runs sub 5.40 to the first marker here and she recently showed her strength with a sizzling 29.69 win here. She should be able to cross early and she may just sneak away with the prize off the back straight.
Keybow is a star but like I said he is likely to find early bother. He should still be good enough to pick himself up and run home into second spot. Push It has been racing in brilliant style here of late and she should be putting a little bit of pressure on My Kinda Music for the first 400m.
Top Four: 7 – 3 – 8 – 1
Win Bet on My Kinda Music
Trifecta: 3,7/3,7/Field ($12 for $1)
Trifecta: 7,8/7,8/Field ($12 for $1)
Race 4 – 520M Special Event Heat – 8:50PM
Chica Destacada has scored two brilliant wins here of late in 29.51 and 29.49 and on both occasions she went 5.36 or faster to the first marker. If she steps cleanly tonight she should have no trouble crossing and should collect the winner’s cheque.
Zipping Delta returned to her best with a dazzling 29.59 win here last week but I think she is poorly placed in the red box. She needs room in the early stages and is unlikely to get it. All Strung Out has put it all together with three impressive wins in Victoria. Before making his debut he recorded a slick 29.66 performance trial win here.
Top Four: 6 – 3 – 7 – 1
Trifecta: 6/1,3,7/Field ($18 for $1)
Quinella: 6 to rove with 1,3,7 ($3 for $1)
Race 5 – 520M Special Event Heat – 9:12PM
Warrior King was a recent finalist in the Group One Golden Easter Egg here and during that series he posted an impressive 29.91 heat win. Since then he hasn’t experienced a lot of luck, but tonight he finds himself in a race in which he should settle in the top three early and he will prove too strong in the run home.
Tiggerlong Amigo recently captured the Group Two WA Derby and in the final he overcame difficulties in running before scoring a six length win. He appears to have gained a little more strength in his races and if he can get through the first bend unscathed he will be a major player. My Awesome Opal should lead for a long way and he may have enough petrol in the tank to hold on for third spot.
Top Four: 5 – 3 – 8 – 6
Suggested Bet: Trifecta: 3,5/3,5/Field ($12 for $1)
Race 6 – 520M Special Event Heat – 9:35PM
Cawbourne Whip turned plenty of heads here last week when scoring an all the way win in a breathtaking 29.38. I think the surprising thing was her 5.38 first section, however if she happens to repeat that performance she will prove far too classy for these.
None Of Them appears perfectly drawn in the pink and three starts ago she set a cracking pace before being reeled in late here in fast time. If she can ping to the lead again she will give a great sight at odds. Aurora Girl recently scored a top 29.72 win here and she will be charging home late.
Top Four: 3 – 8 – 2 – 5
Suggested Bet: Each way on None Of Them (Cawbourne Whip is my top tip but I think she will be unders and it may be worthwhile taking the value with None Of Them).
Race 7 – 520M Special Event Heat – 9:57PM
Hooksy is resuming after a month off the scene and with an ounce of luck he should get the cash. During the month of April he posted three sensational wins here, with the fastest being in a scorching 29.36. The middle pin may pose a problem but he does have an amazing turn of foot and that should allow him to avoid any early trouble.
Rue De Kahn turned in an enormous performance here last week when placed behind gun speedster Double Twist. In recent times she has turned in great performances from wide draws and she should get every chance again tonight. Unbelief is another in form chaser and she appears to be the only other winning hope.
Top Four: 5 – 8 – 1 – 4
Suggested Bet: Trifecta: 5/1,4,8/1,4,8 ($6 for $1)
Race 8 – 520M Special Event Heat – 10:17PM
Stilton Blue is a faultless beginner and he was recently placed in the Bulli Gold Cup Final. In early April he recorded consecutive placings here behind the gun speedster Awesome Project and if he can reproduce those performances he will prove hard to reel in tonight.
Deadly Vane is a super chaser from Victoria and he has been racing against the best provincial chasers in the country, making two Country Cup finals in recent months. He’s having his first look at Wentworth Park but that shouldn’t pose too many problems. Tommy Brislane is an up and coming star but tonight he has a heap of early speed drawn out wide and he may get carved up early.
Top Four: 4 – 8 – 2 – 3
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Stilton Blue, Should be great value.
Race 9 – 520M Grade 5 – 10:37PM
The speedy Gaudi was far from disgraced here last week when he finished just outside the placings. In that event he was unable to find the early lead but he still managed to kick on in the straight and wasn’t beaten that far. Tonight I think he can carve across to the early lead and he should prove too zippy for this lot.
Lacey Lois is another quick beginner and she should bring Gaudi across in the early stages. I think she will get burnt off in the middle stages but she should have enough in the tank to punch on for the quinella spot. You Name Me doesn’t appear to have great form but her past couple of runs haven’t been too bad and she has enough ability to cause an upset.
Top Four: 8 – 7 – 2 – 5
Suggested Bets: Win bets on Gaudi and You Name Me (Have more on Gaudi).
Race 10 – 520M Grade 5 – 10:57PM
Senorita Selena is normally a reliable beginner and from her red draw she should get every chance to feature. Two runs back she mustered speed very quickly before scoring a convincing 30.04 win here and a repeat of that effort will see her get the cash again.
Rangi Ruby can be a very hard chaser to follow but he is blessed with lots of ability. He has been racing over 600m of late and tonight drops back to a more favourable trip, with some luck in the early stages he should be in the mix. Got The Life and Joe Hanley both have winning prospects if they find themselves in the top two at the first bend.
Top Four: 1 – 4 – 6 – 5
Suggested Bet: Unleash on Senorita Selena straight out, perfectly drawn and well graded.
3,5/2,3,5,8/5,8/4,8 ($32 for $1)
1,3,4,5,6,8/2,3,5,8/5,8/4,8 ($96 for $1)
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Be sure to read the review later today by our resident Wentworth Park expert Bradley Bugeja.
A big Saturday of greyhounds is headlined by the Peter Mossman heats, and Sportsbet has a big offer.
Place a win or each-way bet on the Peter Mossman heats (Races 3-8)this Saturday night and get a 20% bonus on your first winning bet.
$200 max bonus, applies to first bet on the market.
Race 1 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 7:15PM
The speedy Duchess Bale is unbeaten over this trip and if she can step cleanly she should be able to lead throughout. In previous weeks she has been pinging the lids over the 600m journey and she recently recorded a smart 34.58 win here. Tonight the only early speed appears to be with Saahd but he is a wide runner so that should work in her favour.
Saahd as stated earlier is expected to match motors with Duchess Bale early and they should break away from the field off the back straight. I would expect him to get a little tired in the run home but he should fill the quinella spot. My Boy Snoop is a gun NSW chaser but my concern with him is that he is having his first look at the track. If he can handle the first bend he should be in the mix as they round the home turn.
Top Four: 3 – 4 – 2 – 5
Trifecta: 3/2,4,5/Field ($18 for 100%)
Quinella: 3 to rove with 2,4,5
Trifecta: 3/2,4,5/2,4,5 ($6 for $1)
Race 2 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 7:37PM
Ozzie Bullet has been extremely disappointing of late at Geelong when racing over the 600m journey. Tonight he drops back to a more favourable trip and he has drawn perfectly in the red box. You can ignore his record of zero wins from six starts here because he has found bother in every run. He is a costly conveyance but I’m willing to give him one more chance.
Elite Devil is expected to lead them up and he has won here previously in a solid 30.35. His recent form isn’t that great but he has been racing against good quality opposition on the country circuit. Ready To Riot is another NSW visitor and she has a few sub 30 second Wentworth Park wins to her credit.
Top Four: 1 – 5 – 3 – 6
Exacta: 1/3,5,6 ($3 for $1)
Trifecta: 1/3,5,6/2,3,5,6,8 ($12 for $1)
Race 3 – 600M Grade 5 – 8:00PM
Very tough race but I think Destini Gold looks very well placed. Normally a reliable beginner, she finds herself in a race which lacks speed and depth and with a clean getaway she should roll to the early lead and dominate. You should be able to find at least $3.50 or better and that looks to be great value.
Hazerati has finally drawn well and he definitely has this field covered talent wise. A dog with his talent would normally be my top tip but he has terrible box manners and he tends to make a lot of mistakes in his races. Magenta Moon will be storming home late and its worth anchoring her for second and third in your exotic bets.
Top Four: 3 – 1 – 5 – 8
Trifecta: 1,3/1,3,5,8/1,3,4,5,7,8 ($24 for $1)
Trifecta: 3/1,5,8/Field ($18 for $1)
Race 4 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 8:20PM
Cosmic Star has continued to improve with every run since returning from a spell and he finally put it altogether with an all the way Shepparton win last week in a slick 25.42. In that win he showed a tremendous turn of foot and he appeared to hit the line with plenty in hand, so the extra journey shouldn’t be a concern.
Veetee Turbo is resuming from a lengthy spell and prior to the spell he had established a great record here having won six of his 12 tries. He is in good hands and I would expect him to be fully wound up and ready to go. Kulu Special is a gifted NSW chaser but he is the type who will either ping and run the hands off the clock or miss the kick and make no impact at all. Making his Meadows debut I’m expecting him to miss away and make no impact, keep an eye out for him second up at The Meadows.
Top Four: 4 – 3 – 2 – 7
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Cosmic Star, should be $7.50 or better
Race 5 – 525M Grade 4 – 8:38PM
In a race which is packed full of speed demons, I think the stronger Peloton Bale might get all the breaks and get the cash at nice odds. There are at least five potential leaders in this event and from his rails draw I would expect him to get a nice sit behind the early leaders and he should be able to pick them off one by one down the back straight.
Quick Succession has been racing in brilliant form of late and she should have enough speed to kick through and lead early, however I expect that there will be a lot of pressure applied to her off the back straight and she might not have enough fuel in the tank to hold off Peloton Bale. Ride The Rails is a gun chaser and he rarely runs a bad race. I really wanted to put him on top but there is a lot of speed in this race and his box draw will work against him.
Top Four: 2 – 1 – 5 – 4
Suggested Bets: Win bet on Peloton Bale, Rove in quinella with 1,4,5.
Race 6 – 600M Grade 5 Final – 8:57PM
Unix Bale has drawn perfectly in the red and last week he looked ultra impressive scoring a nine length heat win in a slick 34.40. His 9.18 first section is only average but from the red I would expect him to anticipate the start a little better and he should run sub 9.10 early tonight.
Untraceable is a tremendous talent and he has recorded three straight victories, with the latest being a brilliant 34.24 heat win last week. Obviously with a clear run he is the one to beat but from box seven he won’t get things all his own way. Artika could be the surprise packet in the event, he has been racing consistently and he has the speed to lead for a long way.
Top Four: 1 – 7 – 2 – 8
Suggested Bets: Win bets on Unix Bale and Artika (have more on Unix Bale)
Race 7 – 525M Grade 5 – 9:20PM
Rumbling Rick atoned for his luckless Victorian debut at Geelong with an impressive all the way Ballarat win in a very speedy 25.27, on that occasion he accounted for the very talented Deadly Boy. Tonight he has slow beginners drawn either side and that should allow him to drive to the early lead and then put a space in them off the back straight.
Brent Bale appears the logical second pick, he should be able to settle in the first two early and he did record a solid placing here two runs back. He is a long way off his best at present but he still has some early speed and he should be in contention off the back straight. What For showed great mid race speed in his placing here last week and he looms as the only other winning hope.
Top Four: 5 – 2 – 3 – 4
Suggested Bet: Take the even money about Rumbling Rick, looks to be a moral.
Race 8 – 525M Free For All – 9:40PM
Allen Eryk is a gun chaser and he looks perfectly placed in the red tonight. Two starts ago he smashed a quality field at Sandown when scoring in 29.43 and with an ounce of luck in the early stages he should carve them up again.
Crawf’s Bread should have enough speed to cross the red early and last week at Sandown he was far from disgraced when finishing fourth behind the exciting Mepunga Armagh. I don’t think he can hold the favourite off in the home straight but he will definitely give punters a good sight. Hawk Alone has a top record here and he is always thereabouts in this company.
Top Four: 1 – 2 – 8 – 4
Win bet on Allen Eryk
Trifecta: 1,2/1,2/Field ($12 for $1)
Race 9 – 600M Mixed 4/5 – 10:05PM
Go Mobo has continued to get stronger with every run over the 600m trip and last start at Sandown he looked impressive when posting a smart 34.32 victory. In that run he showed great early speed and he appeared to hit the line in with a little in hand, tonight I would expect him to lead all the way again.
Tick Bale is super consistent and two starts ago he scored a strong 34.40 Sandown Park victory from this draw. He has been missing the kick of late, but he has been hitting the line strongly so he can afford to miss the kick again. Rebelation races well here and he is rarely far away in this company.
Top Four: 3 – 8 – 4 – 6
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Go Mobo, should be $3 or better.
Race 10 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 10:25PM
The promising Hekate Belle is drawn to punch through to the early lead and if she can reproduce the effort which saw her win at Shepparton in a slick 25.27, she will prove very hard to reel in. She led for a long way here in May before being run down late and she should be a little stronger in the run home now.
Cobra Bale is a chaser with enormous talent, but you never know which Cobra Bale is going to show up. He has all of these covered ability wise but my concern is that he is yet to win in five tries from this draw. If he can get through the first turn unscathed he should be right in the mix. Ralphy Cinel has been racing in great form over 600m here of late and he must be respected.
Top Four: 1 – 8 – 2 – 4
Trifecta: 1/2,4,8/Field ($18 for $1)
Trifecta: 1,2,8/1,2,8/1,2,4,5,6,8 ($24 for $1)
Race 11 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 10:42PM
Exciting NSW speedster Shoulders has been freshened up with a month off and if he can reproduce the effort which saw him win at Dapto in a breathtaking 29.49 in March he should prove too good for these. His last three runs have been far from impressive but on each occasion he found bother soon after box rise, tonight from the red alley there should be no excuses.
Ever Alert has been racing in great style of late and he is armed with a big finishing burst. His past two starts here he has been posted wide for most of the trip, tonight from his rails draw he should be able to settle much closer to the speed. Dyna Yenite appears to be the only other winning hope, he can show early speed in his races and he has a solid record here.
Top Four: 1 – 3 – 2 – 7
Trifecta: 1/2,3,7/Field ($18 for $1)
Trifecta: 1/2,3,7/2,3,7 ($6 for $1)
Exacta: 1/2,3 ($2 for $1)
Race 12 – 525M Grade 5 Heat – 11:02PM
Hurricane Rhino is perfectly placed out wide and he has been racing in great heart at Wentworth Park of late. Two starts ago he showed a tremendous turn of foot soon after box-rise and assumed control at the first turn, before careering away to score a brilliant 29.95 win.
Humphrey Bale is dropping considerably in class and he has a top record over this trip. If he can reproduce his 29.98 PB here, he should be in the mix throughout. Cry Baby Jeff is normally a reliable beginner and he should be in the top two for most of the trip, his last 40m is always a worry but he should be able to hold on for a minor spot.
Top Four: 6 – 2 – 5 – 4
Suggested Bet: Win bet on Hurricane Rhino
1,2/1,2,7/5/1,2,4,7,8 ($30 for $1)
1,2,4,5,6/1,2,7/5/1,2,8 ($45 for $1)
Shepparton twilight racing is the epicentre of feature racing in Victoria this Saturday, with the final of the listed Northern Districts Cup taking place.
The 2014 running of the race will see particular interest in a hugely talented pup by the name of Dewana Result. The youngster has set tongues wagging after some very slick performances in his short career, including setting a new track record at Warragul two starts back.
Aside from Dewana Result looking a standard in terms of times, the rest of the field look very evenly poised with some very competitive heats conducted on Monday night.
$25,000 awaits the connections of the winning dog for the event, which is run over the spacious 450 metre Shepparton layout. The Northern Districts Cup is Race Eight and is scheduled to jump at 7:48pm.
Here is a look at each runner;
1 – Kraken Concord ($8.00) – Kevin Eyles – Returned to form on Monday with an all-the-way win in 25.52. Had been mixing box manners in his couple of starts prior to that but looks to have a penchant for the Shepparton track. Looks a place chance but it would be a surprise to see him win.
2 – Symmetry Lad ($21.00) – Sharon Kaliszewski – Has terrific box manners and has the ability to lead the race but is very shaky over the last fifty metres and is likely to get overhauled. He is yet to win in four attempts at this track and this race is probably tougher than any of those.
3 – Overdrive – ($10.00) – Ian Garland – Ran on well to defeat a handy dog in 25.46 on Monday, recording his second win from three starts at Shepparton in the process. He definitely possesses his share of talent but will need to exit the boxes cleanly here to put himself in with a genuine winning chance. More of a place hope than a winning one.
4 – Who Told Blackie ($26.00) – Michael Fothergill – Jumped well and ran wide on Monday, surprising a few by leading all-the-way to score in the time of 25.55. Looks very awkwardly drawn in this given his habit of using the track and with a lot of pace outside him, he will need a lot of luck.
5 – Quick Hitch ($16.00) – Sandra Waycott – A risky beginner who does have the ability to run on but looks very dicey from the middle box. Could find himself in the middle of a squeeze with a wide runner inside and speed outside. You could only take him on trust here.
6 – Dewana Result ($1.70) – Brendan Dewan – The one that all eyes will be on come box-rise. In just four starts he has captured the imagination of the greyhound racing community with a couple of eye-popping runs. He was slow away from this box on Monday but quickly whipped up to take over and register a lightning 25.01. The only query will be whether or not he will find the same spaces in such an even field if he misses away again. That aside, he has panels on the rest of them when it comes to times and is the one to beat.
7 – Xtreme Knocka ($5.50) – Jason Thompson – Ran home strongly on Monday night to go down by a narrow margin. Has drawn this box four times already in his nine start career but really started to motor once he found the fence last week. He is in the astute care of Jason Thompson but may be governed by what the two dogs either side of him do early in the race. Given room he is definitely a big hope.
8 – Grand Legacy ($10.00) – Peter Dapiran – Looks well boxed out wide and put in a terrific effort on Monday to score despite finding trouble during the race. If he can avoid that trouble from the outside then he may be able to put himself right in the picture here. He looks the knockout dog in the race.
9 – Be Up ($16.00) – David Warburton – Has won four from 16 at Shepparton but is yet to flatter on the clock with a best of 25.62. Has some early speed but is vulnerable late in the race. Would struggle if gains a start.
10 – Coup D’Etat ($33.00) – Brian Buchanan – Led in his heat and seemingly had every hope of winning. Would be facing a much stiffer assignment here if he gained a start.
Up and comer Happy Haswell sent out a warning to rivals that he is the one to beat in the final of the listed Flyng Amy Classic, winning the third and final heat in the fastest time of 30.15.
The heats were also highlighted by the fact that Patrick Estate mentor Peter Ruetschi not only qualified three runners for next Thursday’s final, but they are also all from the same litter. You Say So, Give You Credit and You Can Talk are all from the Outa Credit – Where Are You (Hallucinate – Duel’s Me Mum) litter and will see Ruetschi with a strong hand in the $15,000 to-the-winner event next week.
Happy Haswell is a Reg Kay trained son of Surf Lorian and Teenage Dream (Knocka Norris – Size ‘Em Up) and he did not have things all his own way, but showed class beyond his experience to win his fifth race from just six starts against much more experienced dogs.
Beginning third from box one, the 31kg dog mustered to second along the fence by the post the first time before copping some slight interference leaving the straight. He managed to hold down second and was in pursuit of early leader My Fantaziya (6) who opened up a four length break.
Happy Haswell claimed My Fantaziya on the home turn and roared away in the straight to score by 2 1/4 lengths on the line from the fast finishing Give You Credit, with You Can Talk (5) in third place.
Earlier, Nala’s Heart ran on well to take out the first heat in 30.23 for Loganlea trainer Robert Handyside.
After jumping well from box three, the daughter of Surf Lorian and Perfect Thrill (Hallucinate – Gorgas) worked her way to second early, chasing You Say So (2), who had opened up a handy break heading to the back.
Nala’s Heart found plenty in the run home and finished strongly to overhaul You Say So and win by 1 1/4 lengths, with Super Vision a further two lengths away in third place.
The biggest upset of the three heats came in heat two when King Elliot (2) led all the way to claim some big scalps in the time of 30.26. The son of Dyna Lachlan and Slick Candy (Black Enforcer – Cyclone Chrissy) speared the lids and as fate would have it, that was the end of the proverbial penny section.
Red-hot favourite Flash Reality (3) missed the jump and despite making his way to second place, managed to find enough trouble to end his winning chances.
The Reg Hazelgrove trained King Elliot showed the virtue of early speed and raced away via an unhampered run to score by 2 3/4 lengths. Angvella (5) was doing his best work at the end of the race to land second and Flash Reality picked himself up to grab third place.
The box draw for the listed Flying Amy Classic is ;
1 – Angvella – Christina Harman
2 – You Say So – Peter Ruetschi
3 – You Can Talk – Peter Ruetschi
4 – Happy Haswell – Reg Kay
5 – Nala’s Heart – Robert Handyside
6 – Give You Credit – Peter Ruetschi
7 – King Elliot – Reg Hazelgrove
8 – Super Vision – Peter Young
9 – Flash Reality – Tony Brett
10 – Renatus – Robin Palmer
Greyhound Racing NSW stewards have finalised inquiries into the eligibility of Evil Punk, which won Race five at Wentworth Park on 17 May 2014.
Stewards interviewed Evil Punk’s trainer James Coyle and have confirmed Evil Punk was ineligible to compete in the event after it was presented at the weight of 30.1kg (1.3kg lighter than when it last raced) and was incorrectly afforded a 2kg allowance in accordance with the provisions of GAR 39 (2).
The greyhound Evil Punk has therefore been disqualified in accordance with GAR 64 (1) from its winning position in the event and the placings have been amended accordingly.
It was probably expected, but Xylia Allen (7) set the time standard in the heats of the Group One Albion Park Gold Cup on Thursday evening with yet another near-record run.
The daughter of Turanza Bale and Tayah Bale (Droopys Vieri – Francesca Bale) stopped the clock at 41.55, just 0.11 outside Dashing Corsair’s track record which he set way back in May of 2010.
It was not exactly a trademark run from the 31kg black bitch who actually left the boxes in last place and had to work hard early to muster up and challenge early leader Mepunga Tiara (4), which she had done by the time they passed the winning post the first time.
From that point, Xylia Allen gradually extended her lead and her victory never looked in doubt. The eventual winning margin was 6 1/4 lengths. Mepunga Tiara battled on to maintain second placing with Mullaway (5) in third.
Another Victorian, Infinite Wish (2) took out the second heat in 41.83 for Anakie trainer Angela Langton. Showing some of the early pace that she had lacked in recent times, the daughter of Premier Fantasy and Jean Jeannie (Surf Lorian – Flickering Lady) left the boxes in second place behind local hope Set Her Again (1).
The pair raced in that order all the way until they reached the 710 metre boxes for the second time, which is where Infinite Wish took over and raced away. By the time they reached the post, the Sydney Cup runner-up had put a 5 1/4 length gap on her rivals to score with ease.
New Zealander Know Class (6) made good ground, weaving a passage through the field to finish second and qualify for next week’s $75,000 to-the-winner final and Set Her Again hung on for third.
The third and final heat saw an upset when local Eleazar (7) finished strongly to take out a mixing affair at a price upwards of $17.00 for Keiron Butler in the time of 42.15. The daughter of Bit Chili and Cool Poss (Big Daddy Cool – Cool Kissy) had recently returned to Queensland after a stint in New South Wales and now finds herself in a Group One final.
Things looked to be going to plan early for punters when favourite Tarks Nemesis (2) went straight to the front with her main rival Wag Tail (6) in second. However the pair appeared to tangle and both lost ground sharply, dashing each others winning chances in the process.
Pumped Up Zarr (1) was left in front and opened up a big space from Golfing Amy (4) and Gangnam Stride (3).
By the home turn, Pumped Up Zarr was under siege and Golfing Amy took over. Just as she looked to have the race in her keeping , Eleazar found plenty in the concluding stages to jump out of the ground and salute from Golfing Amy, with Late Angel Lee (8) grabbing third.
The box draw for next week’s Group One Albion Park Gold Cup is as follows;
1 – Xylia Allen – Jenny Hunt
2 – Infinite Wish – Angela Langton
3 – Golfing Amy – Des Pollock
4 – Mepunga Tiara – Jeff Britton
5 – Eleazar – Keiron Butler
6 – Mullaway – Joanne Price
7 – Set Her Again – Bruce Linnan
8 – Know Class – James Shaw
9 – Late Angel Lee – Darren Titmarsh
10 – Auriga Doll – Geoff Draheim
The Gardens has been plagued by controversy for most of its relatively short life, but Greyhound Racing New South Wales (GRNSW) is hoping that the creation of The Gardens Greyhound Club will steady the ship.
The Gardens was originally managed by the National Coursing Association (NCA) but GRNSW stepped up to the plate in August 2013 and axed NCA’s management of The Gardens due to concerns surrounding its financial viability. The financial mismanagement of The Gardens was used as a case study in the recent Parliamentary Inquiry into Greyhound Racing in New South Wales. The case study detailed the significant financial assistance (bail-outs) provided by GRNSW to the NCA over a period of time. There was also the well-publicised misappropriation scandal in 2012 which involved The Gardens General Manager.
After the NCA’s tenure was abruptly halted, GRNSW announced plans to invite Expressions of Interest for the management rights of the greyhound track. Three EOI’s were received (GBOTA, Richmond Greyhound Racing Club and PPB Advisory).
GRNSW has selected the submission by PPB Advisory and this has paved the way for the creation of The Gardens Greyhound Club. The new Club is comprised of four members:
Brett Lazzarini (Chairman)
Ronald Bell (Vice Chairman)
Alan Williamson (CEO/Club Secretary)
Michael Brown (Treasurer)
Many would recognise some of these names; Lazzarini has been involved in the greyhound industry for some time and most recently served as the Deputy Chairman of the GBOTA. Bell is a well known and highly respected greyhound trainer in the Hunter Valley. Brown is a businessman who set up the JB Lodge Greyhound Training and Breeding Facility and Williamson has a plethora of experience in managing sporting clubs.
The board members have been established in line with assistance from PPB Advisory. PPB Advisory provides corporate advisory, restructuring and insolvency services, so it is clearly in a position to provide the right advice to put The Gardens back on track. PPB Advisory will continue to assist throughout the formation of the new club.
Given the history of The Gardens, the new board members certainly have a big task ahead to make The Gardens financially viable as greyhound racing on its own will not make The Gardens trade in the black.
Lazzarini told the local Newcastle Herald that the board was considering its options.
“We will be oriented towards making it more of a community sporting arena,” he said.
“We just need it to make money again. That’s the black and white of it, because greyhound racing doesn’t make enough money for the track to be self-sufficient.”
The Gardens Greyhound Club will commence operations of The Gardens venue from 1 July 2014. The next year or so will prove crucial to its future.
Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) will become the first greyhound racing authority in Australia to monitor unnamed greyhounds that are inactive within the sport from July 1 2014 and will institute a late lodgement fee for members that are non-compliant with their retirement reporting.
From 1 July 2014, GRV will institute a late lodgement fee if a retirement has not been completed for a named greyhound and the greyhound has been identified as inactive in the racing industry for over six months. This will apply to all greyhounds born on or after 1 January 2011. Members will be given prior notice if their greyhounds fall into this category and will be encouraged to complete a retirement form if the greyhound is no longer a racing prospect.
The late lodgement fee for unnamed greyhounds will be introduced on 1 January 2015.
Although retirement reporting has been a requirement under the rules of racing for several years (GAR 106), GRV has focussed on educating participants in regards to their responsibilities. There will now be an even greater focus on enforcing these requirements as the organisation has become much better equipped and resourced to track all greyhounds.
General Manager ‚Äď Integrity, Racing and Welfare at GRV, Glen Canty, said this was an important step in the being able to accurately monitor all greyhounds within the racing industry.
“We are very serious about the welfare of the greyhound at GRV and will be enforcing a number of stringent reporting measures for those participants that aren’t complying with our greyhound retirement policy,” Mr Canty said.
“The five-year Strategic Plan identified Greyhound Welfare as one of the most important areas to address and we at GRV see the appropriate and timely reporting of retirements as one of the main regulatory changes that needed to be introduced to increase the accountability of its members.”
“GRV is unwavering in its desire to improve all greyhound welfare practices and that’s why we are putting systems in place to track every greyhound through its life with quantifiable statistics to assist with the determination of further strategies to address welfare matters.”
“We have the ambitious and achievable objective to decrease the number of healthy greyhounds that are euthanised by 40% over the next five years in addition to increasing the quality of litters bred in the state, leading to 70% of all greyhounds bred making it to the track.”
Given that GRV is about to commence following up unnamed greyhounds that have fallen inactive, it is important for participants to ensure that any unnamed greyhounds that have been sold or are with new owners are correctly transferred otherwise members risk being fined for non-compliance as the last registered owner. There is no fee attached to the transfers of unnamed greyhounds.
GRV take the issue of greyhound welfare very seriously and will not tolerate improper reporting of a greyhound‚Äôs whereabouts. This is a major undertaking for GRV and its Integrity, Racing and Welfare Department.