Anthony Bullock Not Conceding Defeat To Buckle Up Wes

Champion chaser Buckle Up Wes (Collision – Everlong Bale) will be at prohibitive odds about winning Division One of the J G Nelson Cup (515 metres) at Monday nights LGRC meeting. Exeter based mentor Anthony Bullock, who prepares another standout in Hellyeah Bolt (Dyna Lachlan – Flash Diamond), has not conceded defeat however.

“Buckle Up Wes is better drawn than me and may very well lead. That would mean that it will be almost impossible to run him down, but I have not given up hope of winning,” he explained this week.

“I believe that there is only about two lengths between them. If my dog is spotting him four lengths in the run, he obviously can’t win, but that may not be the case.”

The outstanding chasers have almost identical Tasmanian and venue records. Buckle Up Wes has won 20 of 31 on Tasmanian soil and 11 of 15 at Launceston, whilst Hellyeah Bolt has greeted the judge at 18 of 30 Tasmanian attempts and in six of nine venue runs.

“Buckle Up Wes prevailed in the J G Nelson Cup heat but we had excuses,” Bullock explained.

“The two of them and Nooee’s Lad went hard into the first corner running a first spit of 5.05 and there was a shuffle up with my bloke coming off second best, but in saying that we are all aware that Buckle Up Wes is a star.”

The Bullock complex will also be represented by heat winner Gemstone Jack (Bit Chili – Right Way Gloria) in Monday night’s event, which carries a lucrative LGRC bonus in addition to a winners purse of almost $2,000.

Meanwhile Brighton trainer Brendan Pursell has qualified both Alonnah (Talks Cheap – Wooreddy) and Despicable Matt (Cosmic Rumble – Sky Twinkle) for Division Two of the J G Nelson Cup, drawing in the red and yellow boxes respectively.

“I am particularly happy with Alonnah of late and she should be able to sit just off the pace in the run. If Red Nitro begins like he did in the heat he may very well lead and she may sit behind him,” Pursell explained.

“Despicable Matt may also get a nice run in transit from the five box because he has a slow beginner each side of him. However it is a very even field and a difficult event to win.”

Ace Mangalore trainer Ted Medhurst has a great chance of winning Division Three of the J G Nelson Cup, with occupants of his kennel making up almost half of the field.

His kennel will be represented by Lonesome Cry-Infatuation littermates Yeah Right, Superficial and Star Chamber, who all debuted recently in impressive fashion.

However Launceston trainer Eileen Thomas, best known as the trainer of former speedster Damek, will provide very stiff opposition to the Medhurst trio with the highly promising Night Tremors (Fear Zafonic – Night Storm). The Christopher Essex owned sprinter has strung together a series of impressive victories in recent weeks.

Gary Fahey Hoping For Hobart Breeders Classic Success

Astute Mangalore trainer Gary Fahey is yet to win a Breeders Classic Final in Hobart, but has a great chance of doing just that on Thursday night when he is represented by littermates Bruny Venture and Rip And Tear in the annual feature.

“I won the Breeders Classic Final last year at Devonport with Daniel’s Bay and the Launceston Breeders Classic Final several years ago with Miki Moto Mike, but have yet to succeed in the Hobart. So here’s hoping,” Fahey explained.

Fahey considers the Island syndicate owned Bruny Venture, by Mogambo out of Dennes Point, to be the best chaser in the race, but as always he feels that luck will play a huge part in proceedings and that the blue box is not the ideal place to be.

“He leaves the boxes satisfactorily, but then gathers speed very quickly. I have no doubt that if he can take up the running he will prove to be very hard beat and it’s in his favour that he has been able to overcome bad boxes at virtually every start he has had.”

Fahey nominates the Gary Johnson prepared Buckle Up Fletch (Dyna Lachlan – Everlong Bale) as the main danger on Thursday night, but also rates the Robert Gourlay prepared Izon Destruction (Lochinvar Marlow – White Ruler) and his other runner Rip And Tear, as great winning chances.

“Buckle Up Fletch is a brilliant beginner which has drawn to suit and Izon Destruction is a very promising bitch showing heaps of potential.”

Fahey and his brother Greg purchased the very well related bitch Dennes Point from prolific breeder Barry Heawood, who has been involved with Breeders Classic glory on at least ten previous occasions.

“We bred the Mogambo litter on the proviso that Barry and the Island syndicate retain one of the pups, which has turned out to be Bruny Venture. Greg and I race the remaining four, which are also displaying plenty of talent.”

The Leith based Johnson has great respect for Bruny Venture and believes that he is the Breeders Classic testing material, a view shared by pre-post bookmakers who have installed the chaser as $2.80 favourite for the $5,000 to the winner plus breeders bonus event.

“I am very impressed with Bruny Venture and consider him a worthy favourite for the Breeders Classic, but believe that my greyhound will run a great race provided he does everything right.”

Meanwhile trainers Gaylene Townsend and Brendan Pursell took training honours at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting conducted at the Devonport Raceway when they both prepared doubles on a ten event card.

The Ranelagh based Townsend provided a major upset when the $19.50 commodity Bandit’s Revenge (Surf Lorian – Mescal Siyan) took out a Grade 5 event and then was successful with the smart chaser That Was Then (Cosmic Chief – Flippin Cool), which took out the Grade 3/4.

Former harness racing trainer-driver Pursell was seen in the winners circle with hot favourite Despicable Lea (Mogambo – Dashing Puzzle) in the Juvenile and the nicely bred Alonnah (Talks Cheap – Wooreddy) in the Grade 4.

Ryan Family Happy In Their New Home

Patrick Ryan and his family relocated to Dilston north of Launceston on the East Tamar Highway only a few short months ago, but already they have established a training complex and entered the Tasmanian winners circle on six occasions.

Originally from Townsville, they spent six years in Brisbane before returning north, but eventually decided to venture south and with the help of mutual friend and fellow trainer Neville Allison, found the property of their dreams and negotiated a deal.

Many years ago Patrick Ryan prepared a winner at his first attempt as an 18 year-old, when the bitch Rivella greeted the judge on the Townsville circuit.

“A friend of mine prepared her and set her for an almighty plunge, which unfortunately did not come off, so he gave her to me lock stock and barrel with her kennel thrown in for good measure,” he explained.

“All I did was walk her around the streets for a couple of weeks, entered her for a race and to my amazement she blitzed her opposition, meaning that I was hooked on the industry forever.”

The ensuing years saw the Ryan kennel produce many winners including the outstanding bitch Wine Glass, which made the final of both the Adelaide and Melbourne Cups and represented Queensland in the National Sprint Championship.

The Bellamy family also entrusted him with the smart bitch Barrio Fiesta, the winner of 18 of 49 lifetime outings and later the dam of outstanding chaser and sire Surf Lorian.

With the six victories under his belt and eight chasers in his kennel, Ryan is now intent on establishing himself in the Tasmanian industry and hoping to unearth an interstate connection capable of providing him with a steady stream of greyhounds.

“I am very impressed with the way that the industry is structured in Tasmania and the fact that locally bred chasers are so well catered for, but unfortunately I am a couple of years away from that situation and until I can purchase some well related bitches to breed from, I may have to rely on interstate greyhounds,” he explained.

Ably assisted by his 19 year-old son Brennan, who has spent time in Queensland with the likes of Tony Brett, Steve Williams and Ron Bell, Ryan travels to the beach at Beechford at least three days a week with members of his team.

“Our property is ideally located as far as the beach and the Launceston and Devonport tracks, meaning that travelling does not pose the problems that it did during the six years that we spent in Brisbane,” he explained.

On Tuesday at the NWGRC meeting conducted at the Devonport Raceway, Winsome Tommy (Bit Chili – Ramblin’ Ruby) provided the kennel with their sixth Tasmanian winner when he prevailed in a Grade 5 (452 metres), recording a time of 25.84 and paying a win dividend of $2.80.

“He was previously in Sydney with John Finn and probably hasn’t raced up to his ability here in Tasmania, but we now think we have worked him out and hopefully he will go on with it.”

Meanwhile Richmond trainer Margaret Rossendell’s long trip to the Devonport Raceway proved to be a profitable one when she prepared the last two winners on the ten event card in littermates Wee Fire and Janda, both by Lochinvar Marlow from Arrow On Fire.

Wee Fire recorded a time of 25.96 when she prevailed in a Grade 5 (452 metres) and then Janda upset a confident betting plunge on the Russell Watts prepared Superbowl (Kinloch Brae – Spiral Rose), by recording a time of 25.85 in winning another Grade 5 (452 metres) in brilliant fashion.

Crystal Innings Gives Launceston Friends A Buzz

Connections boasting a long association with the LGRC were seen in the winners circle at the Devonport Raceway on Tuesday afternoon when the well related bitch Crystal Innings (High Earner – Ricky’s Angel) led throughout to score an impressive victory in the Grade 5 event (452 metres).

The bitch is raced by LGRC Chairman John Newson and prepared for him by veteran Newnham mentor Doug Cassidy, who is assisted in his endeavours by his wife Pam, who occupies the position of Vice Chairman. In addition, both Doug and Pam are life-members of the club, having devoted many hours of their time over the years to what is probably Tasmania’s most financial greyhound racing organisation.

“It is a great result for all of us, we are close friends, reside in the same location and are all involved with the Launceston Greyhound Racing Club,” Doug Cassidy explained on Wednesday.

John Newson purchased Crystal Innings from John Quill early this year when attempting to procure a well related bitch, to be used ultimately for breeding purposes.

“John asked me if I was prepared to train her for him and brought her to my kennels early in March,” Cassidy explained.

“It has taken time to get her to the races because she came in season, but I have been patient with her and am naturally hoping that she can win a race or two for us before she is eventually retired to the breeding barn.”

On Tuesday Crystal Innings flew the lids and was never in danger of defeat in the premier position, recording a time of 25.91 and paying the handsome win dividend of $10.70.

“I expect her to improve further still. I take her for long walks up as far as the Rocherlea football ground and then gallop her of a Friday and she is handling the work load well.”

Two races prior Crystal Innings’ litter sister Flash Innings recorded her tenth win when successful in the Grade 2/3 event (452 metres) for co-owners Quill and Ricky Ponting and Relbia mentor Tony Dawson.

Originally declared an emergency for the event, she also led throughout, recording a time of 25.78 and paying a win dividend of $5.40.

Meanwhile another veteran of the sport in Richmond’s Steve Hutt, enjoyed a successful day at the NWGRC meeting when his kennel was represented by the winners King Nitro and Red Nitro, members of a Nitro Burst – Wind Fire litter raced by John Carr.

King Nitro prevailed in the Grade 4 (452 metres) in the time of 25.82 and Red Nitro made good use of the red box to take out the Adam Brooks Grade 4 (452 metres) in the time of 25.66.

Since the littermates were transferred to the Hutt complex they have recorded nine wins in total, while accumulating a purse of in excess of $14,000.

Smart chaser Pioneer Mogul (Collision – Pepper Spice) continued on his winning way at the NWGRC meeting when he upstaged some very well credentialed rivals in the Grade 4 (452 metres).

Bridport trainer Richard Hall has unearthed the key to the chaser, which has won three of his last four starts and five of 17 lifetime outings while taking stakes of in excess of $8,000.

In defeating race favourite Glitzy Bling (Dyna Lachlan – Miss Bling) and Golden Sage (Knocka Norris – Trina Sage), Pioneer Mogul recorded a time of 25.77 and paid a win dividend of $3.80.

Brendan Pursell Set For A Big Night At Hobart With “Team Despicable”

Brendan Pursell is a Tasmanian trainer on the rise and he has a big chance to add to his recent run of form on Thursday night with a strong hand at the Hobart meeting. Pursell’s “Team Despicable” loom as major chances to take out two of the GOTBAT division’s after impressive showings in the heat’s last week.

Getting these dogs was a case of being in the right place at the right time for Pursell and things have been rosy for the Brighton trainer since.

“Mitchell Pryce owns the dogs and sent them down to Mick Stringer who has since gone through the process of winding down his numbers to a much smaller team. He hadn’t done anything with Despicable Ben and Matt and I was offered the dogs”, explained Brendan.

“Once those two were going well Mitchell sent me Despicable Lea, who is in the final Thursday night. He also sent me Locky and Chris who haven’t had a race yet, but one of those goes pretty good, so we are looking forward to that. I’ve got 10 dogs in work at the moment; the five Despicable’s, Champagne Girl, Allonah, Club Foot, Limbo Maid and Bain’s Lane.”

“Champagne Girl and Bain’s Lane aren’t far away from resuming, whilst Allonah and Club Foot are in on Thursday night as well. Club Foot is another from Mick Stringer that goes well and I expect him to run a good race on Thursday.”

Despicable Lea is the first of Pursell’s GOTBAT finalist’s after winning her heat impressively in the Division 3 for Juveniles series. She will jump from box two in the final.

“If she jumps like she did in her heat and found the front she will be hard to catch. Howzat Grace has drawn perfectly and is very strong and will be the hardest to beat.”

Pursell will also play a huge hand in the GOTBAT Division 2 for grade four and five dogs after Despicable Ben and Despicable Matt won their respective heats impressively. Despicable Ben ran a best of the night 26.06 and looks the hardest to beat in the final.

“Ben is the better of my chances. He probably would have been suited drawn out wide where he can wind up. Real Caution would be the main threat after his run the other day and Matt is a place chance if things go right, but he will find it hard to beat the other two.”

“Despicable Ben is the best of the three by a country mile on what he’s done. He is very strong, but lacks a little in the second split. His run home times are as good as the really good ones and if he can improve a bit early we might have something. I might bring him over to Victoria for one of the heat and finals at The Meadows on a Wednesday or Sandown on a Sunday.”

“If he happens to win on Thursday night and everything is well we might trial next week at The Meadows and see how he goes. At least there is no excuses that way, if he has seen the track and been through the travel process we will be ready to go. He isn’t fool-proof early, so I think a trial is crucial. It would be different if he was a flying machine early and landed on the lure, but he is what he is.”

This attention to detail is sure to see Pursell with a big win in Victoria sooner rather than later.

Kalaway Ernie Completes Unique Double

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 syndicate, 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 Nagars syndicate headed by Kerry Lehman.

“I believe there are sixteen members of the syndicate which 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.

Kalaway Crusty Carries On The Good Work

Smart chaser Kalaway Crusty was successful in the Grade 4 (452 metres) conducted at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting at the Devonport Raceway and in doing so carried on the good work in recent months of the Knocka Norris – Trina Sage litter raced by the Ulverstone based The Nagars syndicate.

The particular litter has already produced five winners of a total of 22 races and stakes of slightly in excess of $45,000, with the standout at this stage of proceedings being the exceptional Kalaway Ernie, the winner of nine races including the prestigious Illingworth Classic.

Trina Sage (Clearwater Boy – Nick’s New One) was bred by prominent Tasmanian sportsman Barry Gossage and was the winner of nine races. To date she has produced three litters, the first by Knocka Norris having been bred by Gossage’s son Hilton, who was instrumental in forming The Nagars syndicate comprising 16 golfers and headed by Ulverstone’s Kerry Lehman.

When queried about the unusual syndicate name, Lehman explained that it is made up of the words “Not A Golfers ……….”.

Prepared at Penguin by master trainer Butch Deverell, members of the litter are displaying great potential and their trainer is predicting that several of them will be better suited over longer distances.

Kalaway Ernie and Kalaway George will contest the rich Tasmanian Derby Final (515 metres) to be conducted at Monday night’s LGRC meeting and have drawn out in the green and black boxes. Deverell expects them to give a great sight in the event and is not unhappy with their draws, Kalaway Ernie having won the Illingworth Classic from the identical box.

“All we need is a bit of luck in running, they are in great shape and I consider the Shane Whitney prepared Arome Peche from the check box to be the logical danger,” he revealed.

Meanwhile top trainers Ted Medhurst, Russell Watts and Benjamin Englund appear likely to dominate Tasmanian Oaks (515 metres) proceedings, with each being represented by two runners in the feature event.

Watts will box Ireland’s Force (Kinloch Brae – Shanlyn Supreme) and Silly Lucy (Premier Fantasy – Lady Arko), Medhurst will be represented by Spring Fall (Bit Chili – Wongawillilesley) and Wild Cindy (Go Wild Teddy – Sultan’s Swing), whilst Englund will rug up littermates Wynburn Rush (Collide – Hayleys Girl) and Wynburn Loco.

The Moorleah based Watts is more than happy with his pair of chasers and would dearly love to win the event, which to date has eluded him.

“I don’t think I have had many runners in the Tasmanian Oaks and I certainly have never won the race, so it would be nice to win it for sure,” he explained.

“The obvious dangers are Spring Falls from the red box and Ben Englund’s chaser Wynburn Loco which can be a brilliant beginner at times.”

Gayelene Townsend’s Long Trip Pays Dividends

Trainer Gayelene Townsend did not let the long trip from Ranelagh deter her on Tuesday when she ventured north to the Devonport Raceway with the recently acquired litter sisters That Was Then and Hannah Boden (Cosmic Chief – Flippin Cool).

Both chasers ran creditable races and obviously took no harm from the four hour journey, with Hannah Boden greeting the judge in the Grade 4 (452 metres) event and That Was Then finishing second to the well related Quick Advance (High Earner – Stylish Moon) in the Invitation (452 metres).

That Was Then and Hannah Boden are now raced by the Collis-Townsend syndicate and have both greeted the judge from their new environment.

“Mick Stringer brought them to Tasmania and we purchased the pair from Mangalore trainer Wayne Smith, who was caring for them at the time,” Gayelene explained.

“I am involved in the syndicate, along with my son-in-law and several of his friends. Our aim is to hopefully win another race or two and gradually work through the grades.”

Gayelene, who is assisted in her training endeavours by her husband Allen and other members of her family, was introduced to the greyhound racing industry by her father back in 1943 and has been involved ever since.

She has prepared several top class chasers, but none have been better than the smart bitch Queen’s Doll, a TCA specialist who won numerous races on the now defunct Glebe circuit, and the very good Tea Tree Bandit, which won a major White City event.

Top Thunder, a Puppy Championship winner, was another smart chaser to have done the Townsend kennel proud and Gayelene is quick to point out that both her mother and her father enjoyed success in that race as the trainer’s of Mad Century and then Nippy Bug.

Gayelene only has four chasers in work at the moment, but is eagerly awaiting the chance to attend to a litter of pups by Head Bound from She’s A Boomer, a daughter of the outstanding matron It’s A She.

“It’s A She threw a marvelous litter to Head Bound, so I thought I would go to him and see if history could repeat itself.”

The re-introduction of hurdle racing in Tasmania would prove to be a very popular move as far as Gayelene is concerned.

“I enjoyed a great deal of success with hurdlers and it enabled the greyhounds to race for an extra year or two, besides they really loved what they were doing and isn’t that what animal welfare is all about?”

Meanwhile promising chaser Buckle Up Fletch (Dyna Lachlan – Everlong Bale) was also seen in the winners circle at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting, when he accounted for a good field in the Juvenile (452 metres).

Raced by Robyn Johnson and Murray Mace, he is prepared at Ulverstone by Gary Johnson and has now won two of his five outings and is shaping up as a star of the future.

Everlong Bale, by Primo Uno, is best known as the dam to Collision of a highly successful litter, which includes the super chasers Buckle Up Wes and Buckle Up Mason, which have both excelled on interstate tracks in recent months.

Wynburn Rush Prevails In Devonport Country Oaks Final

Smart bitch Wynburn Rush (Collide – Hayleys Girl) maintained a family tradition by scoring a bold victory in the Devonport Country Oaks Final (452 metres) decided at yesterday’s NWGRC meeting.

Members of her particular litter, which were whelped in April 2012, have been to the fore in recent months in Tasmania and interstate. They have accumulated a total of 21 wins and appear to be improving with age and experience.

Wynyard’s Tom Englund bred the litter, which includes the likes of Wynburn Wizard (7 wins), Wynburn Rush (5), Wynburn Blaze (4), Wynburn Chaos (2), Wynburn Loco (2) and Wynburn Joker (1).

Englund’s son Ben and Scott Bryan share training responsibilities for the litter mates, which are shaping up as stars of the future.

Wynburn Rush rocketed home to take out the Country Oaks, defeating Beautiful Bella (Lochinvar Marlow – Splitting Hairs) and Hard As Nails (Bit Chili – Right Way Gloria), paying a win dividend of $7.40 and recording a time of 26.04.

The bitch qualified for the rich event by running fourth behind Hard As Nails in her heat the previous week, but improved sufficiently to provide fledgling trainer Englund with one of his biggest wins to date.

“She just seems to be able to win the important ones. We are really pleased with her, she is a great little bitch,” Tom Englund explained after the win.

Unfortunately for connections the Country Oaks favourite, the well performed Kawasaki Rose (El Galo – Magic Dust), was involved in a scrimmage mid-race and failed to complete the course.

Meanwhile boom chaser Groovy Lane (Velocette – Come Over Nova) returned to his best form to take out the Devonport Country Derby Final (452 metres) in a spine tingling finish involving three greyhounds.

Formerly prepared by Ted Medhurst, the chaser debuted in January and won his first six races in succession, before changing hands for a sizeable amount and entering the kennel of Paul Donaldson.

Prior to the Country Derby Final he had been a shade disappointing on three occasions, but returned to his very best with a strong finishing burst to defeat deadheaters Gemstone Jack (Bit Chili – Right Way Gloria) and Great Taylors (Talks Cheap – Wooreddy) in the time of 25.83, while paying a win dividend of $5.30.

Popular trainer Kevin McConnon of West Moonah was also seen in the winners circle at yesterday’s meeting when House Of Stark (Global Warming – Tui Jet) was successful in the final event on the programme (452 metre Grade 5).

The chaser had been displaying improved form in recent weeks and recorded a time of 25.82 in defeating Golden Sage (Knocka Norris – Trina Sage) and Bozzies Girl (Bombastic Shiraz – Miss Bel Air), while paying a win dividend of $5.90.

The big spending McConnon and his mate, former top North Hobart footballer Des Graham, are regulars at many Tasmanian greyhound racing meetings and are always willing to help out and good for a laugh.

Sing The Song Smashes Long Standing Devonport Record

It has been stated many times that Lilli Pilli Lad’s 452 metre track standard of 25.13 established in July 2000 would never be bettered, but the exceptional bitch Sing The Song (High Earner – Stylish Moon) changed all that on Tuesday afternoon when she recorded a blistering 25.01 in winning the Invitation.

Prepared by 86 year-old Robert Grubb of Launceston and raced by him and members of his immediate family, the bitch flew the lids and gave a faultless display of sustained speed to score by seven lengths as a raging $1.60 commodity.

The bitch has now won 16 of 43 outings and is probably the pick of the High Earner – Stylish Moon litter which has yielded seven individual winners and 63 wins combined.

“Establishing a new track record at Devonport came as a real surprise to us. We were aware that Sing The Song had plenty of ability, but to smash Lilli Pilli Lad’s record was great,” the trainer’s son Robin explained this week.

“She was only marginally outside the track record recently in Hobart and has also been within an ace of the Devonport distance record, but on this occasion she really turned it on for all to see.”

The Grubb family have refused several good offers for Sing The Song in the past, but opted to retain her as a prospective brood bitch for the future.

“She is a lovely leggy bitch and should make a good broodbitch and we will breed another litter from Stylish Moon by the ill – fated High Earner later in the year.”

Meanwhile two heats of the Country Oaks and the Country Derby were conducted at the NWGRC’s Tuesday meeting, with the rich finals to be decided next week.

Exeter based mentor Anthony Bullock took out the first Oaks heat with the diminutive bitch Hard As Nails (Bit Chili – Right Way Gloria) and the second was won by the very smart Kawasaki Rose (El Galo – Magic Dust), prepared at Mangalore by Debbie Cannan.

Illingworth Classic winning chaser Kalaway Ernie (Knocka Norris – Trina Sage), from the Butch Deverell kennel, was successful in the first of the Derby heats and then former interstate trainer Patrick Ryan provided somewhat of a surprise by taking out the second heat with Slash Is King (Gardam Prince – Janado Queen).

Ted Medhurst – Question Time Podcast

We got the opportunity to sit down for a chat with Ted Medhurst at the Golden Easter Egg. The man that puts the polish on Buckle Up Wes answered your questions on what could be a monster night for his kennel.

Question Time Podcast With Ted Medhurst – Ask Your Questions

Saturday night is a huge night for Ted Medhurst, with his superstar sprinter Buckle Up Wes jumping from the red box in the Golden Easter Egg Final.

We have managed to secure some time with Ted on Saturday night for another Question Time Podcast. This interview follows on from our Question Time Podcasts with Jason Mackay, Paul Wheeler, Jason Thompson, Rob Britton and Tom Dailly.

Ted’s career began as a 17 year old back in 1976 and he has trained a lot of exceptional dogs over a long career. In recent times he has had group one winners Belle Haven and Buckle Up Wes.

I asked Ted who his “favourite” dog was over the years and Blazenka’s Flyer was the instant reply. Hearing Ted tell the stories from the late 80′s was a real warm up for what should be an interesting and informative interview.

You can send your questions in via many options -

- Our Contact Form
- Our Facebook Page
- The comments section on this page

These podcasts are designed to allow our readers to get involved in the interview process and we encourage your participation.

Tony Dawson Remembers Outstanding Matron Silverdome

Relbia owner–trainer Tony Dawson’s pleasant memories of the outstanding matron Silverdome (Pat To Stop – Campus Flyer) and the Devonport Raceway were revived at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting, when Flash Innings (High Earner – Ricky’s Angel) took out the City Of Devonport Cup (452 metres).

Raced by John Quill and Ricky Ponting, the bitch recorded her ninth victory in 19 outings for the Dawson kennel, recording a time of 25.58 in defeating Club Foot (Mogambo – Von’s Angel) and Buckle Up Brett (Where’s Pedro – Buckle Up Tina).

Flash Inning’s victory in the annual feature continued the great run of success that the Dawson family have experienced at the venue, which included a Devonport Cup score with the super chaser Stylish Doctor (Stylish Teddy – Kenny’s Best Pal).

“I know Flash Innings is not a member of the Silverdome dynasty, but I immediately thought of her and her progeny and the success that they experienced at the Devonport Raceway, which appeared to suit them ideally,” Dawson explained this week.

“Ken Imlach bred Silverdome and I prepared her to win fourteen races before enjoying great success with her progeny, including both Stylish Teddy and Stylish Doctor, which I believe are the only father and son combination to win a total of one hundred races between them in Tasmania.”

Great stayer, the ill-fated Chinatown Lad (Lilli Pilli Lad – Chinatown Babe), is another standout which has emerged from the dynasty, which also includes members of the Stylish Dotty (Stylish Teddy – Kennys Best Pal) litter by Where’s Pedro, which accumulated in excess of 150 wins between them.

The astute Dawson, who is currently preparing a small team of three greyhounds, has no grandiose plans for Flash Innings other than to contest the Illingworth Classic Series, which commences at the LGRC meeting on April 21.

Meanwhile patrons at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting were treated to a thrilling finish to the Betta Milk Grade 5 (452 metres), when several of the field crossed the line locked together.

The judge finally opted for the Ian Johnstone owned, Joanne Ivory prepared, bitch Jonk’s Ginger (Bit Chili – Painted Shaza), which prevailed in the time of 26.06 at odds of $7.80.

The bitch had previously raced on six occasions at the venue without running a place and the victory proved to be a welcome change of luck for both the owner and the Ulverstone based trainer.

The Nagars syndicate, also based at Ulverstone, were once again seen in the winners circle at the meeting when the smart chaser Kalaway Ernie (Knocka Norris – Trina Sage) saluted the judge in the Tasfreight Grade 4 (452 metres) event.

It was the Butch Deverell prepared chasers fifth win in 20 outings since debuting at the Devonport Raceway in October and increased his earnings to almost $10,000.

Mangalore mentor Mick Stringer, who has reduced the size of his team in recent months, also experienced success at the meeting with the promising Underclass Hero (Collision – Topline Doovee), who took out the final event on the card, the Seba Sheetmetal Grade 5 (452 metres).

The chaser recorded the fastest time of the day, a sizzling 25.28, in winning the event and in doing so brought up a hat trick of victories for the Mills–Stringer syndicate.

Vale Chinatown Lad

The loss of former Tasmanian staying champion Chinatown Lad this week evokes great memories of the brilliant half miler who, along with his litter sister Fallen Zorro, took the Australian staying ranks by storm in 2008.

As greyhound fans, the thrill of watching a powerful athletic stayer at the peak of their powers is just about the most perfect sight we could ever hope to witness in greyhound racing, and for many, Chinatown Lad was the embodiment of this ideal.

The brindle chaser, bred by Shane Whitney, was from a mating of Lilli Pilli Lad out of Chinatown Babe and was whelped on December 3, 2005, from the Dams first litter. The litter of eight comprised five dogs and three bitches, and would go on to secure Chinatown Babe as the Australian Greyhound Racing Association (AGRA) broodbitch of the year in 2008.

While all in the litter were talented, two proved to be superior to the rest, namely Chinatown Lad, and Fallen Zorro.

Chinatown Lad began his race career on August 9, 2007 at Hobart in a Juvenile stake over the flying 340 metre course, winning on debut off the red box in a handy 19.90 seconds. He would win his next two starts at Hobart over the 457 metres in good times and shortly after went to Launceston winning over the 515 metres in a flying 29.75, saluting by over 15 lengths.

It wasn’t until February 2008 however, when his staying ability was initially put on display, with a win at Devonport over the 580 metres in a sensational 33.00 seconds, equalling the track record and winning by over 14 lengths. His connections had no reservations about his ability to get the long distance and he was produced in Perth shortly after for a crack at the staying riches on offer during the Perth Cup Carnival.

The heat and final of the Swan Challenge, a Group Three event over 715 metres at Cannington, saw two victories chalked up for the rising staying star, with the final won in track record time of 41.42 seconds.

Chinatown Lad then ventured to Brisbane for the Group One Albion Park Gold Cup over 710 metres, which he won in brilliant style. His heat was stunning, winning by over 16 lengths, and then he claimed victory in the final over his litter sister, Fallen Zorro.

The super staying duo would again quinella a Group One Race, this time it would be the Sandown Cup in May, which he won leading throughout, in a super run of 42.14 seconds, with his sister Fallen Zorro again runner-up.

The big race occasions continued for Chinatown Lad, finishing third in a Group 2 AWM Distance title at The Meadows in July and then winning the Chairmans Cup at Wentworth Park over the 720 metres in September. He also broke the Wentworth Park track record over the 720 metres in his first run at the track, completing the journey in an incredible 41.93 seconds, the first greyhound to ever break the magical 42.00 seconds barrier at Sydney’s premier track.

Chinatown Lad retired with 47 starts for 21 wins and 17 minors with stake earnings in excess of $220,000.

Australian Racing Greyhound spoke to owner Katrina Gregory for her recollections of her champion chaser.

“He was given to me to train by Gavin Whitney, who had been a lifelong friend of our family. I knew very little about greyhound racing, having come from a harness racing background and I was a little unsure of how to go about it.” Katrina explained.

“I realised pretty quickly he (Chinatown Lad) was special, because people kept making offers for him in the car park when I would trial him.”

ARG asked Katrina about her biggest thrill with Chinatown Lad.

“For me the one of the biggest thrills was his first start, when he won over the 340 metres. It was my first starter as a trainer and he won from the red box. Then we got swabbed.” She said jokingly.

“The other great thrill was when he went to Perth and broke the track record in the final of the Swan Challenge.”

“After sixteen starts I gave him to Gavin and Shane (Whitney) to train as I realised he was a pretty special dog and they both had so much more experience as trainers than I did.”

Katrina explained to ARG about the loss of Chinatown Lad.

“Unfortunately he developed a lump on his neck, and after being examined it was found to be cancerous. It was terrible news for us, especially for my son Brayden who looked after “Max” on a daily basis, feeding him and the broods and attending to their everyday needs.”

Katrina also explained that while having a champion greyhound is a great thrill, the experiences and lifelong friendships she enjoyed via the deeds of Chinatown Lad is something money can’t buy.

“Greyhound people are like a large a family and I have travelled around the country and met and become friends with many wonderful people including Jason and Seona Thompson, Paul Felgate, Tina Womann and Dennis Trewin to name a few.”

While the passing of the former champion is difficult to accept, Katina said his legacy would live on through his pups.

“He has served a few bitches, but being a stayer and a Tasmanian greyhound he has not served the numbers some sires enjoy. We have a couple of litters here, and there are still straws available should anyone want to breed a litter by him.”

Vale Chinatown Lad, gone, but will live on in the memories of greyhound lovers forever.

Young Trainer Ben Englund Experiences Feature Race Success

Young Wynyard trainer Ben Englund may have only held a licence for a year, but it did not prevent him entering the winners circle following the rich Breeders Classic Final (515 metres) conducted on Monday night at Launceston, with the highly promising chaser Wynburn Rush (Collide – Hayleys Girl) saluting in style.

Drawn the red box in the annual feature, the black bitch sped to an all the way victory, defeating her litter mate Wynburn Wizard by a length, in the time of 29.89.

Filling third spot was the Debbie Cannan owned and Ted Medhurst prepared Spring Fall (Bit Chili – Wongawillilesley), a further five lengths back.

Wynburn Rush and Wynburn Wizard are raced by the Wynburn Racing syndicate headed by Scott Bryan, who also prepares the latter.

Ben Englund’s father Tom, who in years gone by raced the outstanding chasers Wynlee Wonder, Wynlee Spirit and Wynlee Raider, bred this particular litter. At the time of writing they have won a total of 15 races between them.

A former Burnie Dockers footballer, Ben Englund has no grandiose plans for Wynburn Rush, but admits that the entire litter are improving with age and racing.

“We have no forward plans for them, other than to contest the Illingworth Classic Series, which will be conducted in Launceston in the near future,” he explained.

“The entire litter are improving and I am hoping that we will have a bit of fun with them yet.”

Meanwhile promising chaser Lou James (Nitro Burst – Mega Yellow) was responsible for a giant run in winning the Grade 5 (452 metres) conducted at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting at the Devonport Raceway.

A noted slow beginner, he was a conspicuous last on settling down in the back straight, but unleashed an amazing sprint in the lane, running his rivals down in spectacular fashion.

It is not the first time that the Margaret Rossendell prepared chaser has performed in this way and repeat efforts will surely see him in the winners circle again.

A feature of Tuesday’s meeting was the fact that several long priced winners were seen to prevail on the day.

The Allan Anderson prepared and Chris Chilcott owned Chilly Vibration (Velocette – Cheeky Vibration) took out the first event on the card, a Grade 5 over 580 metres, paying a lucrative $30.10 for the win.

Three races later veteran Sheffield mentor Ged Mace was seen in the winners circle with Arnold Bibby (Bit Chili – Speedy Vixen), which paid $16.60 and then the Anthony Bullock prepared Said You Wood (Bit Chili – Painted Shaza) surprised at odds of $16.10.

The Exeter based Bullock then delivered the final knockout blow as far as punters were concerned when Big Tsonga (Big Moose – Tsonga Queen), put paid to his opposition from the red box as a friendless $29.20 commodity.

Wynburn Syndicate Chasers To The Fore In Breeders Classic Final

The Wynyard based Wynburn Racing syndicate have qualified three greyhounds for the rich Launceston Breeders Classic Final (515 metres) to be conducted at the LGRC meeting on Monday night.

All three are members of the successful Collide – Hayleys Girl litter bred by Tom Englund and will be competing for stakemoney in excess of $9,000 and a breeders bonus in excess of $8,000. It promises to be a highly competitive event.

Wynburn Wizard, Wynburn Chaos and Wynburn Rush had won a total of six races between them until the heats of the Breeders Classic were conducted last Monday night, when all three greeted the judge in impressive fashion.

Wynyard plasterer Scott Bryan prepares Wynburn Wizard, whereas Wynburn Chaos and Wynburn Rush are prepared by his mate, former Burnie Dockers footballer Ben Englund.

“Members of this litter qualified for the Devonport Breeders Classic Final but failed to finish in the placings. We are naturally hoping to improve on that performance and feature in the finish on Monday night,” Scott Bryan explained this week.

“It is a great race and one that owners and breeders must target if they are to recoup some of their expenses.”

Of the three Wynburn syndicate chasers, Wynburn Wizard ran marginally faster on Monday night when he recorded a time of 30.04 in winning his heat by two lengths. Wynburn Chaos recorded an easy seven length victory in the time of 30.06 and Wynburn Rush also recorded a time of 30.06 in establishing a two length advantage.

Master trainer Ted Medhurst prepared the fastest qualifier, the promising Debbie Cannan owned Homeward (High Earner – In Top Gear), which put four lengths on his rivals in a sizzling 29.97.

“Obviously Ted Medhurst’s greyhound will prove to be the testing material on Monday night, however we have drawn the red box with Wynburn Rush which is an advantage.”

“I consider Wynburn Wizard to probably be the pick of our three, but on this occasion he has not been favoured by the draw.”

Meanwhile former jockey Pat Hall was seen in the winners circle at Monday’s NWGRC meeting conducted at the Devonport Raceway, when Waratah Boy (Dyna Lachlan – Coulta Sky) was successful in the Grade 4/5 (580 metres) event.

Raced by Victorian owner Jarrod Sharp, the chaser has now won six of 27 lifetime outings and has proven to be a welcome addition to Hall’s Old Beach kennel.

Former New South Wales trainer Rod Bragg, who prepares his team in the Midlands town of Tunbridge, was also seen in the winners circle at the meeting when Boom Boom Kitty (Take The Kitty – Noisy Tiger) was successful in the Juvenile (452 metres).

Raced by prominent Oatlands sportsman Peter “Barney” Carnes, the chaser has now won two of eight lifetime outings and is likely to score again in the not too distant future.

LAUNCESTON BREEDERS CLASSIC FINAL (515 METRES)

 

1. Wynburn Rush Ben Englund
2. Homeward Ted Ted Medhurst
3. Wynburn Chaos Ben Englund
4. High Sierra Michael Louth
5. Wynburn Wizard Scott Bryan
6. Topline Star Mick Stringer
7. Spring Fall Ted Medhurst
8. Arome Peche Shane Whitney
9. Mystic Falls Ted Medhurst
10. Underclass Hero Mick Stringer

Hellyeah Bolt Home In Ivory Classic

Classy chaser Hellyeah Bolt (Dyna Lachlan – Flash Diamond) continued on his winning way at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting conducted at the Devonport Raceway, by winning the $5,760 Reg and Aileen Ivory Classic (452 metres) in brilliant fashion.

Challenged for the lead early in proceedings, the Anthony Bullock prepared speedster eventually found the premier position and then asserted his authority in the lane, winning by two lengths in a slippery 25.31.

Smart bitch Sing The Song (High Earner – Stylish Moon) ran on nicely to make up the quinella, with Captain Thomas (Collision – Lightning Moss) securing third stake a further length away.

Hellyeah Bolt has now won 18 races and stakes of in excess of $51,000 for the North West Coast based Hellyeah syndicate headed by Rick Donaldson.

The Exeter based Bullock, one of Tasmania’s leading mentors, announced ambitious plans for Hellyeah Bolt following his Ivory Classic victory.

“Hellyeah Bolt will fly out this week for Sydney with an Easter Egg campaign in mind,” he declared.

“Brian McKivat will look after him for me and he will trial at Wentworth Park before contesting an Easter Egg prelude the following week.”

The chaser has campaigned interstate previously, winning an Angle Park feature back in September.

Bullock also revealed that the 2014 Devonport Cup winning chaser Are Ate (Lochinvar Marlow – Long Long Mama), will also leave his complex this week, transferring back to Queensland to contest the Ipswich Classic.

“Two of my best greyhounds will be vacating my place, so I guess I will have to replace them with a couple of slow ones,” he joked.

Meanwhile Brighton trainer Shane Whitney, best known as the trainer of the former top stayers Chinatown Lad and Fallen Zorro, prepared three winners at Tuesday’s meeting.

Whitney set the ball rolling, winning the first event on the card with the speedy Arome Peche (Dyna Lachlan – Last Serenade), which recorded 26.01 in winning the Diane Rockliff Juvenile Stake (452 metres) by five lengths.

The black dog gave nothing else a chance in the event, justifying his $1.40 quote and recording his third win since debuting in Hobart in January.

Whitney was seen next in the winners circle with Direct Current (El Grand Senor – So Seductive), which prevailed in the King Ricky Grade 5 (452 metres).

The former Victorian chaser also won by five lengths and in doing so recorded a fastest of the day time of 25.20 and his fourth win in seven Tasmanian outings.

Aston Fury (Bombastic Shiraz – Aston Beauty, also a former Victorian greyhound, completed the Whitney treble by winning the Mersey Mist Grade 4 (452 metres).

He recorded a time of 25.53 in winning by four lengths and has now won both of his two Tasmanian outings.

Australian Cup Trophy On Display At Devonport

The magnificent 2014 Australian Cup trophy was on display for all to see at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting conducted at the Devonport Raceway.

In recent days the trophy has been shared around by the proud owners of Buckle Up Wes and their families. Part-owner Sharon Sutton was in attendance at the meeting for the purpose of firstly “doing a John Singleton” and shouting the bar and letting the general public view the trophy.

The success of Buckle Up Wes will do wonders for the greyhound racing industry in Tasmania and in particular the North West Coast region, the home of the Johnson and Sutton families.

Meanwhile two heats of the annual feature, the Reg and Aileen Ivory Memorial Classic, were conducted at Tuesday’s meeting and the $5,700 final will be conducted next week.

No doubt the Ivory family would have been extremely proud of their grand-daughter Sharon, had they been around in this day and age to participate in the Australian Cup celebrations.

Launceston’s Grubb family qualified litter-mates Sing The Song and Quick Advance for the Ivory Memorial Classic, when they ran the quinella in the first of the heats.

Quick Advance led from box one, but was collared in the straight by the bitch Sing The Song, which recorded a time of 25.51 in winning the 452 metre affair.

Buckle Up Brett, from the Johnson kennel, filled third berth and along with the fourth placegetter Captain Thomas, has earned the right to contest the final.

The second heat was taken out by the smart chaser Hellyeah Bolt, which proved to be too strong in the concluding stages for Golden Sage and Woodleigh Doll in the time of 25.47.

Oscar Ralph, an occupant of Maurie Strickland’s Bracknell kennel, finished a close up fourth and will also join the fight for the big bucks on offer.

Robert Grubb, who along with his son Robin, tends to the superb High Earner – Stylish Moon litter, is of the opinion that Sing The Song will be suited in box 7 next Tuesday.

“She likes it out wide and will give a great account of herself, with Anthony Bullock’s dog Hellyeah Bolt the obvious danger,” he explained.

“We have probably won fifty or sixty races with members of this litter and Sing The Song is the quickest, although the ill fated Kiss Me Elvis, which broke a leg, also had an abundance of speed.”

Meanwhile the Brian Crawford prepared Alvin Benz appears to have turned the corner and was very impressive in winning The Advocate Grade 5 (580 metres) event at Tuesday’s meeting.

Raced by Crawford in partnership with his son Justin, the son of Big Daddy Cool has now won two races in succession and is finally revealing his true potential.

The chaser put six lengths on his rivals while running a personal best time for the journey of 33.04 and is one to follow in coming months.

 

$5,700 REG AND AILEEN IVORY MEMORIAL CLASSIC (452 METRES)
1. Hellyeah Bolt                      Anthony Bullock
2. Woodleigh Doll                   Dennis Wood
3. Captain Thomas                 Alison Walker
4. Buckle Up Brett                 Gary Johnson
5. Golden Sage                        Butch Deverell
6. Quick Advance                   Robin Grubb
7. Sing The Song                     Robert Grubb
8. Oscar Ralph                        Maurie Strickland
9. Stylish Abbey (Em 1)       Robin Grubb
10. Gracie (Em 2)                   Donna Goodluck

You Little Beauty Wes

Ted Medhurst answers the phone and after the introductions he simply says, “you little beauty Wes!”

That statement symbolises the excitement Medhurst has felt since Buckle Up Wes, a dog he trains in Tasmania, won the 2014 Group One Australian Cup at The Meadows on Saturday night.

“It was just a dream come true. You watch it happen to others, and to have some small involvement with St Pierre, it was just incredible, but to be there on Saturday evening and be part of it, it was just sensational” Medhurst told ARG.

“When he led it was, I must say, just mayhem. The part owner Robyn Johnson was standing with me and we just started barracking for him, which I never do. I never barrack and that’s why my voice is hoarse the way it is, I think I’ve barracked myself hoarse.”

Buckle Up Wes led the field for the Australian Cup but Medhurst was well aware that a race isn’t over until the dog has passed the finishing post.

“You just thought deep down he’d win, but being in racing for so long, until they get across the line you’re just never sure. When he went across the line the feeling was just of total elation.”

Immediately after the race, the celebrations started, with Medhurst recalling the jubilation felt by all involved.

“There was a lot of embarrassing jumping around and hugging after the race I can tell you. It is something that won’t ever leave you, that feeling. It’s just there forever, it’s great.”

Wes wasn’t forgotten in the celebrations either.

“He’s a very good boy and he got treated accordingly. He had a million pats and kisses. Having said that, when he got home yesterday all he wanted to do was get fed. His number one love is food and that was all he was waiting for.”

Medhurst commended the atmosphere at The Meadows on Saturday night and said it bought back some good memories of the ‘old days’.

“The atmosphere was huge. In Tassie we’ve sort of lost that. Our tracks are inside galloping tracks that are inside trotting tracks. Back in the old days we had that. At the old Launceston track you could lean over the fence and touch them. I grew up with that sort of atmosphere and back in them days the crowds were massive. But Saturday night bought back a lot of that. The crowd and Marg Long and her committee were just sensational and looked after us before and after the race.”

Medhurst indicated that the preparation and lead up for Buckle Up Wes was good in that the dog had built some confidence coming into the final, despite missing out on making the Launceston Cup final in February.

“It’s just meant to be. Everything happens for a reason and it just all fell into place. He probably had his confidence up after winning in the consolation of the Launceston Cup and he went sensational and then in two runs at The Meadows he just improved enough to be where he had to be. He travelled well and it couldn’t be more perfect.”

Medhurst noted that it’s has been a big month for him and Debbie Cannan, who handled Buckle Up Wes on Saturday night.

“It’s been a pretty big month. We won the Maiden Thousand, Launceston Cup (Varcoe) and Bell Haven’s had a heap of pups. She’s a mummy now and she has 11 little tykes running around. She’s as good a mum as she was a race dog too. She went to Kinloch Brae, an imported dog.”

Bell Haven was a star stayer for Medhurst and it was Medhurst’s regret at not watching her race more often that led him to attend The Meadows on Saturday night to watch Buckle Up Wes.

“What I probably regret is not going over to watch her (Bell Haven) race more often. A couple of weeks ago before the series started, I said if Wes makes the final, I’m going this time. I’m so glad I did.”

Buckle Up Wes has pulled up well after his big win and he will now have a short spell and then begin preparations for the Golden Easter Egg.

“He’s ready to go again. I’ll give him a little let up and prepare him ready for the Easter Egg at Wenty. He’s had pretty full on racing since December and I’ll just ease up for a week or ten days and then we’ll get him ready again.”

Winning an Australian Cup is a huge achievement and one that will see Buckle Up Wes’ name etched onto the illustrious honour roll for eternity and it’s only fitting to finish with one last quote from the trainer of the Group One champion.

“He just showed the other night to the rest of Australia what we knew he had. It’s good that that’s happened.”

Greyhound Betting Tips Thursday 27th February

Great night of racing ahead with some quality greyhounds engaged.

Recent Vince Curry Memorial winner Jungle Junction is engaged to run in the heats of the Queensland young guns. All eyes will be on the daughter of Cindeen Shelby and Cosmic Rumble, as she tries to continue on her winning way.

Albion Park Greyhounds Race 3 Box 2 Dulcie Dee, 7.25pm

Most of the races look to have a standout winner in them tonight here at Albion Park. Dulcie Dee for trainer Frank Hancock looks the one to beat in this. The daughter of Collision has all ready stopped the clock in a impressive 29.95 here, and has won eight from seventeen starts. She’s well drawn in the two box, and is likely to trail early leader Chant into the first turn. Once she positions in behind Chant she should prove to strong in the run to the line.

Chant however gets his chance to win, and will make full use if the red box. He has a PB of 30.08, two lengths slower then Dulcie Dee, but he doesn’t find the line all that well, so he will need a little luck to hold her off.

These two however look the standout pair, so I suggest taking a few multiples around these two, running first and second.

Angle Park Greyhounds, Race 8 Box 2 Jimmy Lane, 9.44pm

Jimmy Lane is a high quality chaser and he won nicely when we tipped him here last week. It’s taking the son of Dyna Lachlan a while to get use to Angle Park, but now he’s found winning form, expect him to keep winning and improve his PB.
He run a solid 30.09 here last week from box eight, and a dog of his quality should get down around the 29.80 mark here tonight, if he jumps straight to the front. Suntory Gold looks the danger, but she will be giving Jimmy quite a substantial lead in the early part of the race, and is unlikely to be able to peg it back.

These two again look the two so stick to taking multiples with them.

Dapto Greyhounds Race 5 Box 6 Little Elsie, 8.55pm

I really liked the way in which this girl won last start here. She showed top early acceleration to burn off Exhibitionist and race away here last week and I see her being able to do the same tonight. Box six won’t cause any issues to her, and there’s very little speed around her. It’s never easy finding winners over the scamper trip, but she’s in form and looks the one.

Eachway.

Hobart Greyhounds Race 9 Box 2 Nooee’s Lad, 9.41pm

I often mention how fast a beginner this this dog is, and he should once again spear the lids and find himself a long way in front. He does however have a flat spot after about 200 meters, so as long as he remains in front, he should just win. He has a great PB here and this is the sorta race he can dominate on.

Likely favourite and should win.

Best of luck

$$ Another Day Another Dollar $$

Andrea McConnon Enjoying Almost Instant Success

Despite having been involved in greyhound racing for only a year, Triabunna owner–trainer Andrea McConnon has already experienced a great deal of success.

The fledgling trainer prepared her initial winner back on November 12, when Tan Tiki (Talk’s Cheap – Olga Doll) put seven lengths on her opposition at the Devonport Raceway and then on Monday night, her kennel recorded it’s second victory when Make A Cuppa (Cosmic Rumble – Rotkara Milly) prevailed at the combined greyhound – harness racing meeting conducted at Tattersalls Park in Hobart.

Andrea had previously had no involvement in the industry, however her partner Trent Anthony had a liking for the sport and suggested that they become involved in a small way.

The trainer now has a team of four in work at the East Coast township, which is known as a fishing and tourist destination and has probably never been the home of racing participants of any code.

“We started by perusing greyhound racing publications and web sites, and selecting greyhounds from interstate that we thought would be suited to the environment here and the style of racing”, she explained this week.

“I either walk my team around the streets here at Triabunna or take them to the beach and it appears that the majority of them love what they are doing.”

Cherry Picker (Regal Thyme – Hot Ride), is another former interstate greyhound which may respond to McConnon’s training methods.

“Cherry Picker was regarded as a short course chaser, but he appears to be stronger now and is about to resume following a minor injury,” Andrea explained.

As well as tending a small team, Andrea and Trent are also embarking on a breeding programme and are rearing a litter of pups by Talk’s Cheap from Darley Whistler (Slater – Minnie Minor).

“The pups were whelped in December and despite the fact that Darley Whisper is five, she is jumping out of her skin and may be put back into work,” Andrea explained.

A water treadmill is also on the agenda, in fact it has been ordered from the United Kingdom and Andrea intends to make it available to other trainers wishing to speed up the recovery of injured greyhounds.

“It will be one of only two water treadmills in Tasmania and will prove to be a great acquisition – far too many greyhounds are missing from the track each year due to injury,” she explained.

Meanwhile Penguin trainer Butch Deverell was back in the winners circle at the Devonport Raceway on Tuesday afternoon when Kalaway George was first home in the Dowling and McCarthy Juvenile (452 metres).

Raced by the Ulverstone based Nagars syndicate headed by golfer Kerry Lehman, the chaser is one of a big litter by Knocka Norris from the well related bitch Trina Sage, which includes the other winners Kalaway Crusty, Kalaway Ernie and Kalaway Knocka.

Time to Buckle Up – It’s Tassie’s Australian Cup Duo

Unlike the Melbourne Cup where runners need to travel over for a prelude before getting a start, the Australian Cup gives all interstate dogs a chance to be graded on their interstate efforts and line-up in one of the highest profile series on the calender.

For two states like South Australia and Tasmania, this is a big deal.

However, out of those two, it is the Apple Isle contenders that would be frothing at the mouth to have their dogs unleashed upon The Meadows next Saturday night, with both Buckle Up Wes and Buckle Up Mason being selected upon the 56 seeds granted a walk-up start into the heats.

OK, now before everyone emails in frantically, saying that Buckle Up Mason is a Victorian greyhound, it needs to be said that the dog is Tasmanian owned and Tasmanian bred by the well-known Robyn and Gary Johnson partnership. Despite the dam of the pair, Everlong Bale, doing most of its racing in South Australia, as long as they carry the ‘Buckle Up’ name, they will forever be part of the Tasmanian crusade.

Focussing on Buckle Up Mason firstly, his career has been carried out almost entirely in Victoria under the care of Graeme Bate. Like most of the Bate army, he is now being guarded by Peter and Jenny Hunt. His form has been a model of consistency through 2013 and into the new year, with several victories at Free For All level including a Melbourne Cup Prelude.

On the other hand, Buckle Up Wes has predominantly raced on home soil with Ted Medhurst putting on the finishing touches. His résumé looks a little more imposing, with wins in the Paws of Thunder and Launceston Cup heats, and took out the Launceston Cup Consolation last night just to prove he’s ready to go.

Apart from both runners racing best when on the bunny, and both chasers wanting the rail, both of them have also amassed $64,000 in prizemoney. Buckle Up Wes got to that total via 18 wins and 9 placings from 32 starts, at a strike rate of 52%, while Buckle Up Mason has done it more steadily scored on 13 occasions with 18 placings out of 50 tries, in other words a 26% winning rate.

They are no flashes in the pan for the Johnson team. The ‘Buckle Up’ moniker has been around for some time now, and it’s not unusual for them to find a bit of success on the highest stage. Buckle Up Tina had a great career for Robyn and Gary when it competed from 2006 to 2008, making three Group 1 finals in a 98 start career that yielded 32 wins along the way.

Then there is the host of runners that remain on home soil via the different litters, with the likes of Buckle Up Myke, Gaye, Kade, Brett and Grace all paying their way week in, week out.

But back onto the star duo, who are by far the standouts from the Collision x Everlong Bale litter. They will line up in heat two and five of the Australian Cup. Mason will have his work cut out from box three, with Peter Rocket and Marcus Joe drawn inside. Meanwhile, Wes has come up with box six, hoping to out-pace Farmor Las Vegas, Banjo Boy and Temlee winner, Zelemar Fever.

While on the topic, Dark Warrior who started his career in Tasmania is also nominated, and will be desperate to hold out Paw Licking around the first corner in the fourth heat.

As mentioned earlier, there was space in this article for the chances of the South Australian entrants in the Australian Cup. However with the injury to pin-up boy Ernie Bung Arrow, the croweaters will be sadly left with no representation.

While every state has their peaks and troughs, anytime an interstate chaser can conquer the Victorian stranglehold is always a popular result. For the sake of Tasmania, let’s hope the Johnson team can do just that.

Debbie Cannan’s Great Run Of Success Continues

Mangalore trainer Debbie Cannan’s run of major race successes continued at the Tote Racing Centre on Monday night when the lightly raced but highly promising chaser Varcoe, blitzed his opposition in the $57,000 Curtains and Blinds Group 2 Launceston Cup (515 metres).

Cannan won the 2011 Devonport Cup with the super chaser St. Pierre, which then graduated to national elite class by taking out the 2011 Australian Cup at The Meadows.

Both Varcoe and St.Pierre are raced by New South Welshman Chris Nutt, a great supporter of Cannan’s Ballyhooly Road establishment.

Varcoe, a son of El Galo, is now the winner of eight of only 17 lifetime outings and is expected to also embark on an interstate campaign in the future.

In what was one of the most open Launceston Cup’s for years, Hellyeah Bolt, Black Rip, Mighty Lomar, Are Ate and to a lesser extent Varcoe, all received plenty of support in wagering on the event.

Varcoe and the Shane Whitney prepared Black Rip went hammer and tongs for the premier position, with the former prevailing in a sizzling 4.99 initial split.

The feature then became a procession, with Varcoe high balling in the lead and the former New South Wales chaser Black Rip, boasting an unbeaten record at the venue, attempting to keep in touch.

At the wire six lengths separated the pair, with the well related Bain’s Lane finishing off nicely to secure third stake, the winner’s time was a personal best 29.69.

Meanwhile the Ted Medhurst prepared chaser Buckle Up Wes showed that he would not have been out of place had he qualified for the Launceston Cup, by taking out the Consolation in a sizzling 29.33.

The son of Collision was sent out a raging favourite for the event and did not let his supporters down by scoring by nine lengths, in what was a wonderful display of sustained speed.

Raced by North West Coast women Robyn Johnson and Sharon Sutton, Buckle Up Wes has now won 18 of 32 lifetime outings while accumulating a purse of well in excess of $60,000.

Medhurst was also seen in the winners circle with the smart bitch Chosen Jewel, which looked good in winning the Wayne and Maxine Groves Stake (515 metres).

The daughter of Big Daddy Cool has now won two of four starts and nine of 42 overall, since being transferred back to Tasmania from Western Australia and is expected to continue winning while in her present form.

At her previous outing Chosen Jewel had no luck in running when fourth behind the speedy Nooee’s Lad and as a result was well supported into a final quote of $2.30.

One For The Locals – Tassie’s Best To Create A Memorable Launceston Cup

This year’s Launceston Cup is a bit different to other years. Not because it has been conducted over three weeks, but because the 2014 version will see eight locals vying for the title.

To some this might mean the race doesn’t hold the ‘profile’ of other years, with no ‘big’ names to steal the limelight. The trainers’ column contains no Bate’s, Dailly’s, Britton’s or Thompson’s. You won’t  see dogs with Group One formlines, track record runs or six-figure bank accounts.

But for some, this will be the best race of the year. Despite the lack of the obvious, what you will see is eight dogs giving their all, trying to change the lives of their connections. A $40,000 reward for those that work hard week in and week out, usually hoping to snag a $1,400 race on a Monday night.

This will be Tasmania’s race. It will be a local chaser winning the spoils on the local track. The question remains though; which one?

Most pundits will instantly lean towards Hellyeah Bolt. The Anthony Bullock runner has given the Hellyeah syndicate a terrific ride in the past 12 months. His top speed and chasing ability are unparalleled and given an ounce of luck he’ll take some toppling.

But this race doesn’t look ideal on paper for the son of Dyna Lachlan and Flash Diamond. The semis were dominated by early speed, and from box seven, Hellyeah Bolt might find himself in the last few in the first 50 metres of the race.

It creates an interesting conundrum; perhaps the lead will be the best place to be, with few dogs likely to storm home.

If that’s the case then there are none faster out of the boxes than Nooee’s Lad. Butch Deverell’s chaser is without a doubt the fastest box dog in the state, and the middle draw won’t trouble him if he spears out like normal.

The issue for the Craig French owned chaser is whether he can run an overall time fast enough to hold out a Group Two field, with his best around the 515-metres being 29.87 over a year ago.

In a similar boat to Nooee’s Lad is Shane Whitney’s recent acquisition Black Rip. He has really hit his straps since coming across from NSW, and is unbeaten in five starts at the Mowbray circuit.

His early speed has helped the dog win race after race in the past three months, but as mentioned, his best time of 29.96 might need improving. Having box two will help his cause no end at a track where positioning on the first turn is so crucial.

The fortunes of the two runners will no doubt shape the race.

With that in mind, the chances of Mighty Lomar have been hurt by drawing the widest box. The former Victorian has been impressive since arriving with Mick Stringer, and is another that relies on her blistering early speed. Her semi-final time of 29.76 was a vast improvement from her previous efforts, and would suggest that she is ready to fire at this level of racing.

Mighty Lomar’s owner, Nathan McMenamin, has provided many runners to the Tasmanian greyhound scene over the years, and few people would begrudge him a landmark victory come Monday night.

Are Ate has come up with the prized cherry exit for the main event, and will be looking to make it two Group race wins in as many months. Like his Devonport Cup win that came as a surprise to many, Are Ate will be in double-figure territory from a betting perspective.

The second of the Anthony Bullock runners qualified for the final with an unlucky third in the heat, followed by a second behind Black Rip a week later. Are Ate adds more intrigue to this race, as the dog is a reliable starter and will be part of a furious charge into the first turn.

So too will be the baby of the field, Varcoe, who has just turned two in January. His run in the semi-final was brilliant, narrowly going down to Hellyeah Bolt in 29.81. That race also contained the likes of Buckle Up Wes, Sing The Song and Whodat Lass showing the class of chaser Varcoe had to overcome.

Owned by Christopher Nutt and trained by Debbie Cannan, Varcoe has been incredibly consistent for his entire career to date, and is certainly capable of causing an upset if the breaks go his way.

Brendan Purcell will be represented by Bain’s Lane who will exit box three. He comes into the final with two seconds by his name; the first was a long way behind Fighting Fang, while the other was a comfortable second behind Mighty Lomar.

While the dog is consistent and ran 29.87 in defeat last week, being drawn between Nooee’s Lad, Varcoe and Black Rip is going to make life very tough. Furthermore, he lost ground to the leader in both the heat and final, and without the likelihood of leading it seems like Bain’s Lane will have his work cut out.

Rounding out the field is the Peter Phillips owned and trained Faolan. A winner of 5 of 21 starts, the son of Surf Lorian and Portent will struggle to overcome box six in a field full of early bullets. Interestingly, Faolan has had a run since the semi-final and was impressive by dispatching a Grade 5 field at Hobart on Thursday.

While that completes the starting lineup, there is another element to the race; Buckle Up Wes starting as first reserve. Probably the name best known amongst the field, the black speedster will be inserted as favourite if he gets a start, especially if given an inside draw. It doesn’t seem the same without a Ted Medhurst runner in the Cup, but if anyone could steal it with a reserve runner, it would be the veteran trainer.

It’s bound to be a fantastic race that should be decided by the time the field enters the back straight. By then, we’ll know if Hellyeah Bolt can muster enough pace early to find the rail and if Nooee’s Lad or Black Rip get a big enough break to hold them off.

Whatever the result, we can’t wait to find out.

2014 Curtains and Blinds Group 2 Launceston Cup

Monday night 10.01pm ADST

1)      Are Ate – Anthony Bullock

2)      Black Rip – Shane Whitney

3)      Varcoe – Debbie Cannan

4)      Bain’s Lane – Brendan Purcell

5)      Nooee’s Lad – Butch Deverell

6)      Faolan – Peter Phillips

7)      Hellyeah Bolt – Anthony Bullock

8)      Mighty Lomar – Mick Stringer

Reserves

9)      Buckle Up Wes – Ted Medhurst

10)   Mental As Ben – Ricky Martin

Bullock Hoping For Initial Launceston Cup Success

Exeter trainer Anthony Bullock is yet to experience Launceston Cup success, but has qualified two runners for Monday night’s $57,000 feature and has an undeniable chance of being seen on the podium.

Following last night’s semi – finals, both Hellyeah Bolt ( Dyna Lachlan – Flash Diamond) and Devonport Cup winner Are Ate (Lochinvar Marlow – Long Long Mama) have made it through for the Bullock kennel, with the former a likely favourite, in what will be a keenly contested affair.

Hellyeah Bolt, which claimed the speedy Varcoe (El Galo – Magic Dust) within the shadows of the post last night, recorded a winning time of 29.81 and the remaining three semis were won by Mighty Lomar (Where’s Pedro – Worldclass Lomar) in the time of 29.76, Nooee’s Lad (Knocka Norris – Break Of Dawn) in 29.98 and Black Rip (Goodesy – Richmond Fox) in 30.00.

Second place getters also qualified for a tilt at Monday night’s rich finale, which is sponsored this year by the local business Curtains and Blinds.

“I would naturally love to win my first Launceston Cup, but it is a particularly tough assignment,” Bullock explained on Tuesday.

“The field includes several chasers with explosive early speed and I am not even certain that the normally brilliant Are Ate can lead, despite him having drawn favourably in the red box. I’m hoping that Hellyeah Bolt can avoid early interference and be positioned within striking distance of the leaders, because he normally finishes his races off nicely.”

Raced by the Hellyeah syndicate, headed by Rick Donaldson, Hellyeah Bolt has now won 16 of his 25 lifetime outings and is shaping up as one of Tasmania’s better greyhounds.

Meanwhile, in direct contrast to Anthony Bullock, Penguin trainer Butch Deverell, who will be represented by Nooee’s Lad on Monday night, boasts a wonderful Launceston Cup record, having won the race twice as a trainer and once as an owner.

“I was successful as an owner with the top bitch Two Codes and have since prepared both Big Moose and Akka Boy to win the race,” he explained.

“I have had problems with Nooee’s Lad, but believe that they have finally been sorted out and despite the fact that he has drawn box five, he has some chance of winning.”

Normally a brilliant beginner, the chaser is raced by Burnie businessman Craig French and is the winner of 15 of his 51 outings.

Mangalore trainer Mick Stringer’s luck changed for the better with the semi-final victory of the former Victorian chaser Mighty Lomar, which was impressive in winning the fastest of the four contested.

In recent weeks Stringer had the misfortune to lose the top chasers Yappin Jack (Aston Galilee – Patsy Anne) and Archie Gumballs (Where’s Pedro – Come On Roxy), which were both being prepared for a Launceston Cup campaign.

$57,000 GROUP 2 CURTAINS AND BLINDS LAUNCESTON CUP FINAL (515 METRES)

1. Are Ate Anthony Bullock
2. Black Rip Shane Whitney
3. Varcoe Debbie Cannan
4. Bain’s Lane Brendan Pursell
5. Nooee’s Lad Butch Deverell
6. Faolan Peter Phillips
7. Hellyeah Bolt Anthony Bullock
8. Mighty Lomar Mick Stringer
9. Buckle Up Wes Ted Medhurst

Tassie’s Finest Progress To Launceston Cup Semis

Two of Tasmania’s finest chasers have graduated in brilliant fashion to the semi-finals of the 2014 Launceston Cup Final to be conducted next week.

Both Buckle Up Wes (Collision – Everlong Bale) and Hellyeah Bolt (Dyna Lachlan – Flash Diamond) blitzed their rivals in their respective heats of the prestigious event, which were conducted at Monday night’s LGRC meeting.

Raced by North West Coast women Robyn Johnson and Sharon Sutton and prepared by Mangalore mentor Ted Medhurst, Buckle Up Wes recorded a sizzling 29.59 in scoring by 11 lengths and enhancing his lifetime record to 17 wins from 30 outings and stakes of in excess of $60,000.

Raced by the Hellyeah syndicate headed by Rick Donaldson and prepared by Anthony Bullock, Hellyeah Bolt put 13 lengths on his rivals and recorded his 15th win from 24 outings and increased his earnings to almost $42,000 in the time of 29.97.

Other heat winners were Black Rip (30.22), Heidi Go Seek (30.25), Varcoe (30.16), Mental As Ben (30.39), Fighting Fang (30.28) and Mighty Lomar (30.10).

Black Rip (Goodesy – Richmond Fox) displayed his customary early brilliance and ran his rivals ragged for Shane Whitney and the Ripping syndicate.

The former New South Wales chaser has now won seven of 12 outings, including the Angus Evans Memorial, since debuting in Hobart during November and is proving to be an excellent investment for connections.

Heidi Go Seek (Talks Cheap – Ceejay’s Vixen) ran down the flying Nooee’s Lad (Knocka Norris – Break Of Dawn), to record her 16th victory from the kennel of Anakie trainer Angela Langton.

The lightly raced Debbie Cannan prepared Varcoe ( El Galo – Magic Dust), led throughout to score his seventh victory and appears to have struck form at the opportune time.

Young Rosevale trainer Ricky Martin was seen in the winner’s circle with the improving Mental As Ben (Cosmic Rumble – Aspen Gold), which has now won six of 23 lifetime outings and stakes in excess of $12,000.

The Gary Johnson prepared Fighting Fang (Collision – Fang Meehan) ran on strongly to score an impressive victory in his particular heat. Virtually unwanted in wagering on the event as an $11 chance, the chaser ran down the speedy Bain’s Lane (Bit Chili – Wooreddy) in the straight and is now beginning to reveal his undoubted potential, despite having only won on four occasions.

The final heat on a great night’s racing was taken out by Mighty Lomar ( Where’s Pedro – Worldclasslomar), which has won two of four Tasmanian starts since arriving from interstate and contesting the Devonport Cup last month.

The first four greyhounds home in each of the eight heats will contest one of four semi-finals next week and then the first two home will graduate to the $40,000 to the winner Launceston Cup Final on February 17.

2014 Group 2 Launceston Cup Heats Preview

Tasmania’s second-biggest series rounds out a huge four days of racing. Once you’ve battled through the Perth and Healesville Cups over the weekend, it’s time to reload with eight full fields for the Group 2 Launceston Cup on Monday night.

The change in format to a three-week series has altered the dynamics of this year’s race. Firstly, there is only four interstate entrants, with two of those originally from the Apple Isle, greatly bucking the trend of recent years. This shows not only the crowded nature of the calendar, but also the preference of the big kennels to travel only two consecutive weeks with their stars.

On the positive side of the equation is that the local trainers have gone all out for the state’s only two-turn Group-level feature. With the Adelaide Cup, Brisbane Cup and Hobart Thousand all providing six or less heats, the change can only be seen as a success at this stage with a maximum 64 runners to face the starter.

For those unfamiliar with the tight Mowbray circuit, let it be known that inside draws are worth their weight in gold. It is awfully hard to come from further back than third around this place, so early speed combined with enough strength to run out the 515-metres makes results hard to predict.

Nonetheless, here is a summary of what punters may face come Monday night:

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT ONE

Black Rip from the Shane Whitney kennel looks hard to beat in the opener. He’s consistent from the boxes and will get plenty of room to move in the early stages from box three. He should be good enough to win from there in around the 30-second mark.

Sing the Song is the obvious danger, although the six-alley will make life tough. Given a clear run he has got the ability, but can only be taken on trust with Black Rip likely to be highballing early.

Tiger Toes races much better around the two-turn tracks and must be included for trifecta players. Street Talk is next best. Be prepared to risk Classic Spence from the poor draw, despite the 30.04 win last start.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT TWO

Buckle Up Wes deserves to make the finals and should do from box three. All the speed in the race is out wide, so if he can hold the rail, the race is over. Fast Turtle (box six) and Miss Kiss (box eight) will fly out of the boxes, but both struggle to run out the 515 in sub-30 time. Miss Kiss is the better of those two.

Look for Maurie Baba, Mumford’s Son and Wynburn Wizard to run on late and put value into the trifecta.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT THREE

Heidi Go Seek for Angela Langton flies the flag for Victoria here. While being the most talented dog, and drawn to perfection in one, she will be very short and might be unders at her first look at the track and first run over more than 400 metres since September.

Nooee’s Lad anticipates the start, and if he gets it right, will be literally three lengths in front by the time the others get off the mat. He will represent value, along with Hellyeah Missile from box eight. The Anthony Bullock-runner struggles to put two good runs together sometimes, but won last start by 14 lengths in 30.08 and with a repeat of that would go close.

Hard to find enthusiasm for anything else, although To Be Trew races best at here and only ever wins when no one expects it.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT FOUR

Hellyeah Bolt should bounce back here.

Last week, he missed the start by half a step and was bashed from every direction for the rest of the race. Forget than run ever happened and focus on the 29.55 personal best. He’ll find the rail unless Lashing Illusion gets in the way, but she is well up in grade.

Dominator Girl looks a certainly to run a place with the rails draw. She loves the track and will win if the favourite gets tangled up again.

Chosen Jewel has returned from W.A and belted a field on Thursday at Hobart. Looks a better dog at home again and will get a nice run into the race.  Meanwhile, Sober Moment and Champagne Girl will be coming home hard at could run a place at odds.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT FIVE

Varcoe draws the red here at looks a great bet. His last start effort at Devonport was brilliant and there isn’t a heap of strength in this one. Has been racing in the best grade possible for the majority of his career and this race is well within his capability.

Proven Fantasy is desperate for the rails, so this will give Teddy Tom Boy and Cosmic Fire a lovely passage in the frantic opening stages from boxes five and six respectively. Teddy Tom Boy is the better of those two greyhounds and has been in form of recent weeks.

If there is one to take a risk on, it could be Jeff The Tipster. Despite being the strongest dog in the race, it’s hard to see him getting a crack at them from box eight. He looms as a first turn victim here.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT SIX

Definitely one of the trickier races on the card, with a case to argue for every runner.

Pinto Pronto is the first dog to stand out with the good draw; however he hasn’t been seen since December and wasn’t going that well before the layoff. If the price is right and the dog is back to his best, should be a good bet.

Are Ate will probably be favourite after his Devonport Cup win, but prefers the one turn tracks and is drawn the yellow. Could well lead the race for a long way, but won’t set the clock on fire and others will be lining him up in the home straight.

Palooka gets the privilege of the cherry rug and races well at this course. Despite being up in class, and down in distance could well be the dog to upset the apple cart.

Chances also given to An That and Alvin Benz in a tough race.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT SEVEN

Bell Oh Moss looks the certain leader here, but that won’t necessarily guarantee a final berth. She hasn’t been the same dog for the past couple of months and is suddenly suspect at the 515.  She’ll probably be favourite, but this isn’t an open-shut kind of affair.

Bain’s Lane has hit a purple patch of form and won’t be too bothered by the wide draw. There isn’t much pace around him and he’ll get a lovely sit behind Bell Oh Moss.

Tic Tac Thomas was only a juvenile when he previously raced on the Apple Isle and has improved while racing in Victoria. Only being moderate from the boxes will work against the Jeff Britton trained chaser here, but he still appears a solid chance.

Those three should really fight it out, but you can add Hellyeah Fiona and Victorian Micky Mambo if looking for a surprise.

LAUNCESTON CUP HEAT EIGHT

Onto the final heat and it wouldn’t surprise if the favourite was $4.00 when they jump.

While there are a host of possibilities, anyone who saw the run of Whodat Lass over the 600 two starts back will jump on board the Graeme Moate runner here. Despite the lack of early speed, it should get a nice trail behind Mighty Lomar and run over the top barring any bad luck.

Mighty Lomar won’t be that easy to get past though and comes into the race with good form, especially the 25.30 run at Devonport two starts back. Expect improvement with this being his second look at the track.

Rumbling Rick draws box seven here and is as capable as any of his rivals in this. Will need luck to get across but if it manages to do so, will break 30 and progress with ease.

Tiza Gold is back from NSW and armed with good early pace and an affinity for Launceston brings this chaser right into calculations. She did struggle a little when in top grade during her Tassie days and looms more as a place chance.

From the others, Heliski is talented, Frytson is drawn well and Tiny Tilly can pull out a run. Should be a nice dividend if one can find a collect in the last heat.

Medhurst Quartet In Maiden Thousand Quest

The might of champion trainer Ted Medhurst’s kennel has never been more evident than in Thursday night’s $10,500 Maiden Thousand Final (461 metres) to be conducted at Tattersalls Park in Hobart.

Half the field are occupants of Medhurst’s Mangalore complex and to make it harder for the opposition, they will occupy the two inside and the two outside boxes, in what promises to be a wonderful contest.

Medhurst will box Groovy Lane (Velocette – Come Over Nova), Homeward (High Earner – In Top Gear), Mystic Falls (Bit Chili – Wongawillilesley) and Real Caution (Dyna Lachlan – Topline Relly), with the former the fastest qualifier with a time of 26.06.

Despite the dominance of the Medhurst kennel during the qualifying events, Brighton trainer Shane Whitney is quietly confident that his representative, Arome Peche (Dyna Lachlan – Last Serenade), will give connections a great sight.

Best known for his previous association with the outstanding stayers Chinatown lad and Fallen Zorro, Whitney has been enjoying a great run of success in recent weeks with his small team and is naturally hoping that it will continue in Thursday night’s feature.

Raced by Les Winter and Frank Katranjac, Arome Peche has raced on only two occasions for a win and second placing and is generally regarded as a big improver.

“He is usually a very fast beginner, but last week he was slow out and headed for the rail, which ultimately brought about his undoing.” Whitney explained this week.

“I know the yellow box is not ideal, but I believe that he has the speed to lead this field and if that happens, he will take plenty of catching. My father Gavin won the race about fifteen years ago with Tick Two Five, so I am naturally hoping that I can also be seen in the winners circle on Thursday night.”

Another of the Whitney team that has excelled in recent weeks is the former New South Wales chaser Black Rip (Goodesy – Richmond Fox), whomade it three in a row by taking out the Big Dog Front Runner Oil Invitation (515 metres) at the LGRC meeting on Monday night.

“I heard on the grapevine that Black Rip was for sale, so I arranged a syndicate headed by my father to purchase him. We are all having plenty of fun because he has won six of eleven starts for us,” he explained.

The chaser will now contest the Curtains and Blinds Launceston Cup Heats which commence on Monday night and culminate in a $40,000 to the winner final on Monday night February 17.

Meanwhile astute Moonah trainer Graeme Moate was seen in the winner’s circle at the NWGRC meeting on Tuesday afternoon when the smart bitch Whodat Lass (Big Daddy Cool – Shanlyn Lass) was successful in the $4,340 Betfair Distance Championship Final (580 metres).

The bitch gave nothing else a chance after finding the premier position early in the event from the pink box and has now won seven of 20 Tasmanian outings since debuting here in August.

$10,500 MAIDEN THOUSAND FINAL (461 METRES)

1. Mystic Falls (Bit Chili – Wongawillilesley) TedMedhurst
2. Real Caution (Dyna Lachlan – Topline Relly) Ted Medhurst)
3. Wee Fire (Lochinvar Marlow – Arrow On Fire) Margaret Rossendell
4. Midnight Bird (High Earner – Superlicious) Michael Dobson
5. Arome Peche (Dyna Lachlan – Last Serenade) Shane Whitney
6. Captain Dylan (Collision – Lightning Moss) Allan Anderson
7. Homeward (High Earner – In Top Gear) Ted Medhurst
8. Groovy Lane (Velocette – Come Over Nova) Ted Medhurst
9. Pacha Queen (Dyna Lachlan – Wicked Witch) Em 1 Harold Cameron
10. Spring Fall (Bit Chili – Wongawillilesley) Em 2 Ted Medhurst

Gift Greyhound Turns Richard Hall’s Luck Around

Bridport owner-trainer Richard Hall was experiencing no luck at all with members of his team until gift greyhound Ninja Bear (Ninja Jamie – Moonlite Bear) entered the winners circle at the NWGRC meeting on Devonport Cup day.

“I hadn’t won a race for eighteen months and wasn’t really confident that Ninja Bear was the greyhound to solve the problem, but he was really impressive that day and now looks like he may develop into a handy performer,” he explained this week.

On Monday night at the LGRC meeting conducted at the Tote Racing Centre, Ninja Bear was once again on his best behaviour when he surprised many observers, by scoring a last to first victory in a heat of the Big Dog (515 metres ) event.

“Admittedly several of his rivals on Monday night suffered severe interference, however Ninja Bear ran on strongly to take out the event, albeit in the slowest of the heats and he has now qualified for the final on Monday night,” Hall explained.

The chaser has now won two of his six outings since debuting at an LGRC meeting six months ago and has joined litter mates Jack Reacher, Bridport Reine and Moonlite Bell in the winners list.

Hall was given four of the litter when they were nine months old, but decided to offer three of the pups to fellow owner-trainers in the Bridport area.

A beef cattle farmer with a large holding on the outskirts of the popular holiday resort, he has been involved in the sport for only four years, but is finding it a welcome form of relaxation away from the property.

“I was at Mick Taylor’s place and saw an advertisement in a greyhound racing publication and decided immediately to purchase a chaser from interstate, without even knowing that I had to be a licensed person to do so,” he explained.

Hall did not experience much joy with that initial investment, but enjoyed success as a trainer not long after with the litter mates Mackie Slater and Gypsy Slater.

“Mackie Slater won six out of his first seven outings and 13 races total and Gypsy Slater won five races, so they set the ball rolling for me,” he explained.

“I sent Mackie Slater to Western Australia to contest the Mandurah Cup, but it took him time to become accustomed to the heat and he did not fire early on, but made amends once he had settled in.”

Hall likes to breed a litter of pups each year and is currently rearing seven by Bekim Bale from the very well performed Elite State bitch Kyra Shiraz.

“Messrs Stamford and Mills bred several litters from Kyra Shiraz with good results and I am hoping that she can carry on the good work for me,” he explained.

Previous to obtaining Kyra Shiraz for breeding purposes, Hall purchased the well related bitch Flick The Switch from New South Wales, however she died before he was able to breed a litter from her.

Hall prefers to prepare only a small team, but is also in the process of offering rearing facilities to other participants.

“I consider my property to be the ideal environment for rearing pups, I have an abundance of space and access to plenty of fresh meat, so what more would I want,” he said.

Are Ate In Devonport Cup Boilover

Queensland owned chaser Are Ate provided a major upset at the Devonport Raceway on Tuesday afternoon by recording an all the way victory in the prestigious Dowling McCarthy Hankook Tyres Devonport Cup (452 metres).

The Anthony Bullock prepared son of Lochinvar Marlow flew the lids from box 7 to take up the premier position and was never headed, eventually strolling to a comfortable 25.57 score and paying a handsome win dividend of $23.20.

Are Ate, raced by the Quad Dog syndicate, was one of three Bullock kennel occupants to qualify for the North West’s premier greyhound racing event after running second to the Russell Watts prepared Jeff The Tipster in the previous week’s heats.

Most pundits declared the race a match in two between Hellyeah Bolt and Yappin’ Jack, but those chasers winning hopes were dashed following an early scrimmage.

The Mick Stringer prepared Yappin’ Jack did well to recover and run into fourth placing behind second placegetter An That and the previously mentioned Jeff The Tipster – the Tattsbet First Four paying a massive $21,650.

Anthony Bullock has only returned to the ranks of Tasmanian trainers recently following a three month stint on the sidelines and is currently enjoying a great run of success.

“I’m happy to win a maiden, but the Devonport Cup’s at the top of the tree,” he explained after the race.

“I won the Tweed Heads Galaxy race a few years ago, but to win a Tasmanian Cup is far better than winning a race interstate.”

When interviewed last week about his Devonport Cup chances, Bullock declared Are Ate the certain leader in the rich event and it is common knowledge that once in front the majority of greyhounds are in with a winning chance at most venues.

Are Ate will now be aimed at the Launceston Cup series which commences at the Tote Racing Centre on February 3rd.

Meanwhile Tuesday’s Tasracing Angus Evans Memorial (452 metres), considered the Devonport Cup Consolation, was taken out by the Shane Whitney prepared Black Rip, which gained a start with the graduation of An That to the main feature.

Heavily supported into a win dividend of $2.70, the son of Goodesy defeated Varcoe and Teddy Tom Boy and recorded a slick 25.48 in doing so.

Raced by the Ripping syndicate headed by the trainer’s father Gavin, Black Rip has now won four of nine Tasmanian outings and is proving to be a worthwhile conveyance.

The big betting Whitney kennel has enjoyed great success in recent years with the likes of outstanding stayers Chinatown Lad and to a lesser extent the bitch Fallen Zorro.

Fastest time for the day at the NWGRC meeting was recorded by the interstate chaser Mighty Lomar, which recorded a sizzling 25.30 in winning the tattsbet. Com Grade 4 event.


2014 Devonport Cup Final


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