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Ronray Spirit goes all the way in 2015 Warragul Cup

THE 2015 Warragul Cup was taken out in superb fashion in 25.78 by the Terrence Reid-trained Ronray Spirit (8) from a gallant Luca Neveelk (1). The first surprise in the race was Luca Neveelk being clearly crossed early by Jubilea Bale (2). Ronray Spirit started the race off extremely well from the outside and soon found himself challenging Jubilea Bale for early supremacy.

Big Ticket (5) and Sisco Rage (6) both loomed as dangers during the middle stages of the race, but both met interference, leaving the race at the mercy of the son of Cosmic Rumble and Ronray Disco.

The hard luck story of the race was the Kelly Bravo-trained Ride The Rails, which is owned by Nadine Brown and was undoubtedly the sentimental favourite of the race.

The win was the first group victory of Ronray Spirit’s career and takes his career record to 12 wins and two placings from just 18 starts. His prizemoney earnings are just short of $60,000 after pocketing connections $45,000 in tonight’s final.

Special mention to the sensational win in race seven by the Darren McDonald trained Armed And Ready in 25.57. This chaser has a big future ahead of him.

Group Two Warragul Cup Full Results

1st: Ronray Spirit (8) – Terrence Reid
2nd: Luca Neveelk (1) – Gerald Kleeven
3rd: Ride The Rails (4) – Kelly Bravo
4th: Big Ticket (5) – Steven Clarke
5th: Jubilea Bale (2) – Jenny Hunt
6th: Caustic Bale (3) – Steve Collins
7th: Narralee (7) – Stephen Creighton
8th: Sisco Rage (6) – John Galea

Time: 25.78
1st Split: 6.53
2nd Split: 11.23
Run Home: 14.55
Margins: 1 1/4 x 1/2

Scratchings: Alex’s Entity (9), Droopys Bentley (10)

Finalists announced for 2014 Victorian Greyhound of the Year

Six superb finalists have been announced for the 2014 Victorian Greyhound of the Year with the winner to be announced on Friday, February 20.

Three sprinters and three stayers make up the numbers for the prestigious title and, between the six of them, they have won eight Group One races, four Group Two races and three Group Three races.

The finalists won a combined total of more than 100 races throughout 2014 and have earned more than $2.68 million between them.

The finalists in alphabetical order are:

Awesome Project

Awesome Project won 19 races in 2014 including the Group Two Gosford Gold Cup and the Group Two Harrison-Dawson in what was a remarkable year for his trainer, Darren McDonald.

The son of Collision and Honour Phase made a further six Group race finals, most notably the Group One Topgun (3rd), the Group One Brisbane Cup (4th) and the Group One Melbourne Cup (6th).

Dyna Willow

The bonny Dyna Willow had an affinity with Wentworth Park, winning both the Group Three Betfair Cup and the Group Two Summer Distance Plate in the Harbour City in 2014.

The brindle bitch won in three different states (Victoria, NSW and Western Australia) during the year, claiming seven races overall.

Dyna Willow has since been retired and is expected to whelp her first litter to Magic Sprite within the next few days.

Keybow

The unfashionably-bred sprinter was one of the most consistent greyhounds during 2014, making eight Group finals, finishing out of the placings in only one of those, the Group One Topgun (6th), at what was his first start back from injury.

The black son of Take The Kitty and Key Exit won two Group One races, the Perth Cup and the Brisbane Cup, as well as the Group Three Silver Bullet.

He ran second in the Group One Australian Cup, the Group Two Cranbourne Cup and the Group Two Queensland Derby while he also finished third in the Group One Melbourne Cup.

Oakvale Destiny

Trained by Jeff Britton, the gutsy blue bitch won the Group One Sapphire Crown in brilliant fashion before landing further success in the Group Three SA Oaks later in the year.

Owned in SA by Nathan Wilson, she made a further six Group race finals during 2014 with her best performance arguably being a strong second in the Group One Topgun behind Buckle Up Wes.

Sweet It Is

The black powerhouse was a dominant force in the staying ranks throughout 2014, winning four Group One races (Sandown Cup, National Distance Championship, Bold Trease and Association Cup) and one Group Three race (Sydney Cup) over the 700s.

On top of this, the kennel-mate to fellow finalists Keybow and Awesome Project, made a further seven Group finals, finishing either second or third in four of them.

Xylia Allen

The versatile champion Xylia Allen rounds out the six finalists for Victorian GOTY with her biggest 2014 victory being in the Group One Gold Cup at Albion Park. The daughter of Turanza Bale and Tayah Bale also took out the Group Two McKenna Memorial.

Australia’s highest stakes earner qualified for seven other Group finals during the year, retiring in late 2014 with $743,730 to her name.

There is no doubt the six finalists for the 2014 Victorian Greyhound of the Year are all exceptional athletes, ensuring a tough battle to determine which chaser will take home top honours.

NSW, Western Australia and South Australia have also announced their finalists for greyhound of the year.

NSW has three outstanding finalists in National Sprint Championship heroine Chica Destacada, Group One Megastar winner Tommy Brislane and the Queen of Wentworth Park, Zipping Willow.

WA has three contenders in grand campaigner On Coin and the Linda Britton-trained duo Star Recall (now trained in Victoria by Jeff Britton) and Zelemar Fever.

SA’s title should be a tight finish with Cairnlea Layla, Galilee Spirit, Genghis Kahn, Sidney’s Shadow and Wild Soul all in contention to be crowned the state’s top dog.

Avondale Porche Hits Top Gear In Cranbourne Cup Heat

A new wave of hopefuls and some seasoned veterans ventured to Cranbourne today to contest six heats of the Group Two Cranbourne Cup. The six heat winners and two fastest seconds will contest next weeks $45,000 to the winner final, with ambitions of joining an already star-studded honour roll.

The first heat saw the Jason Thompson- trained Whodat Knockin’ lead all the way from box seven in 30.36, holding off the fast finishing Wind Whistler by just under half a length. It was a huge run from Wind Whistler after finding trouble on the first turn and rattling to the line late in proceedings. Recruitment ran an honest race to finish third in his first start for Darren McDonald.

Recent Ballarat Cup winner Luca Neveelk headlined the second heat and was sent out as the $2.60 favourite. As expected the Gerald Kleeven- trained speedster speared out to the early lead from box four, but was unable to clear out down the back. Hostile was always going to be very hard to hold out if he could position himself on the speed, and when he lobbed second down the back things were ominous for the early leader. Hostile finished strongly on the rails to win by over a length in 30.24, with Ride The Rails grinding home for third.

Keybow was sent out a raging $1.50 favourite in the third heat from box five but was slow to begin and found trouble early. Once the Kel Greenough- trained Avondale Porche found the front early it was goodnight, with the comeback chaser clearing out to win by nearly six lengths in a slick 30.21. Dyna Geldof and Bit Berger filled the minor placing’s, with Keybow beaten out of sight in seventh after finding constant trouble.

The 2014 Cranbourne Cup winner Banjo Boy lined up in the fourth heat at the $2.40 favourite with hopes of defending his title for Ken Virtue, however the Graham Whitford- trained Zambora Magic was having none of that. The despised 20/1 outsider ran down early leader Ibrox Digger late in proceedings by a half-length in a steady 30.54. Banjo Boy loomed up as a threat on the turn but could only manage third in the run to the line. Bunga Bunga was the unlucky runner in the event after copping a check in the home straight.

The 2007 Cranbourne Cup was won by Vapour Whirl and one of his well performed progeny in Oakvale Destiny will be attempting to etch her name into the same record books as her father. The Jeff Britton- trained star made a fantastic start to her Cranbourne Cup campaign with a dominant performance in the fifth heat of the day, winning by an ever widening five lengths in 30.32. Although she was slow early, the breaks went her way and when she lobbed second on the fence behind early leader Turbo Norris, it was a case of times and margins. Dave Burnett’s quality chaser Kiss Me Ketut was a huge run to finish second after being crossed early by Turbo Norris.

Sonic Pirate provided the second massive shock in the sixth and final heat. The Peter Reinders- trained son of Premier Fantasy and Sonic Jet chased his heart out to come again and beat the much more fancied Weblec Belle at 33/1. When Weblec Belle railed underneath Sonic Pirate to find the front clearly down the back it looked like it was going to be a one act affair, but Sonic Pirate fought back and got up in the last stride in a slow time of 30.64.

The field for the $45,000 to the winner final is as follows :

1 – Wind Whistler – Angela Langton

2 – Sonic Pirate – Peter Reinders

3 – Hostile – Darren Beasley

4 – Luca Neveelk – Gerald Kleeven

5 – Avondale Porche – Kel Greenough

6 – Oakvale Destiny – Jeff Britton

7 – Zambora Magic – Graham Whitford

8 – Whodat Knockin’ – Jason Thompson

Reserves

Dyna Geldof – Steve Collins

Ibrox Digger – Steven Clarke

Star Recall Shines In Group One Sale Cup Final

STAR Recall has finally broken through for a deserved win at the highest level, claiming tonight’s Group One Sale Cup in terrific fashion.


Beginning brilliantly from box four, the daughter of High Earner and No Recall went straight to the lead and was never headed, holding off a late surge from Star Recall to score in 37.15 over the 650 metre trip.

The race favourite was Sweet It Is which gained a start following the scratching of Zipping Spike from box three. Darren McDonald’s champion bitch began fairly but dropped back to the tail of the field in the early stages, as per usual, and was unable to reel in the leader, finishing third.


Trained by Jeff Britton, Star Recall has been in terrific form since stepping up from the sprints, winning four of her five appearances over the middle distance.

Her victory in the Sale Cup brought her career record to 44 starts for 25 wins and 11 minor placings while she has now earned over $256,000 for connections.



The bonny black speedster has been a superb greyhound for owner Kevin Dover, having been previously placed twice at Group One level.

The former WA star ran third in the 2014 Perth Cup, while she ran second to Chica Destacada in the National Sprint Championship in August while trained by Jeff’s sister Linda.

In addition to this, Star Recall has also made the finals of both the Group One Melbourne Cup and the Group Three Mandurah Cup.



It is unsure where she will be aimed at next.

2015 Gosford Gold Cup Heats Preview

Four star studded heats of the Group Two Woy Woy Poultry Gosford Gold Cup will be run and won this Friday night over 515m, with thirty two greyhounds vying for a chance to qualify for next week’s $40,000 to the winner final.

Long time greyhound enthusiast Laurie Refalo from Woy Woy Poultry Supplies has again come on board as the races’ major sponsor, with an enticing amount of prizemoney up for grabs next week.

Last year’s victor Awesome Project went onto win the Group Two Harrison-Dawson Final for Victorian mentor Darren McDonald and finished third in the Group One Topgun Final back in October 2014.

Gosford Gold Cup Heat One

Group Two Sandown Shootout Winner Iva Vision (3) will make the trip down from Queensland, after two disappointing runs at his past couple of outings at Albion Park. The son of Ivan Brown, trained by Peter Young, has the ability to recapture the form that saw him clock a sizzling time of 29.27 at Sandown Park last month.

Pocket rocket chaser Magic Display (8) will be looking for her third straight victory on Friday evening, after a very impressive 29.80 performance here last week. Spearing the lids from box two, the Evelyn Harris trained chaser, has an impeccable record at Gosford of three wins and two minor placings from seven starts and should get a beautiful cart across from the wide alley.

Chasing The Line (1) is coming off the back of two sensational wins at Wentworth Park including a sizzling 29.67 performance last week. Ideally drawn near the rails, the Loren Harborne trained speedster recorded a very strong run home of 11.70 last week and will be charging home at the finish.

Gosford Gold Cup Heat Two

Sprinting sensation Zipping Willow (4) will be looking to redeem herself this week after finishing third in the Group Three Christmas Gift Final at Wentworth Park. Making her debut at Gosford on Friday, the daughter of Goodesy and Sirocco Lass has scintillating early pace and will be looking to notch up career win number 34 from start 51.

Ritza Hattie (7) will also make her debut at the track for trainer Mark Gatt and has been consistent of late at Wentworth Park, with some solid placings in free for all company. Despite a wide box draw, this talented daughter of Bombastic Shiraz and Midnight Flare has a very strong motor and will figure at the finish.

Topper Road is beautifully drawn near the rails for trainer Anthony Azzopardi and has early speed to burn. The son of Oaks Road and Uno Emi has been consistent of late at Wentworth Park, recording a solid 29.97 victory at the track two weeks ago. Another Gosford debutant, who has only been unplaced twice in his 13 start career, could run a very cheeky race and qualify for next week’s final.

Gosford Gold Cup Heat Three

Coming off the back of another Group victory for the year, Chica Destacada (5) will again need to overcome a poor box draw to get the fly over this classy field of runners. Doreen Drynan’s chaser was simply amazing in the Group Three Christmas Gift Final two weeks ago, leading all the way from box one in a flying time of 29.62. The daughter of Cosmic Rumble and Eluthra was victorious in her only start at Gosford back in February, recording a blistering time of 29.46.

Queen Esther (3) has speed to burn and is a consistently brilliant beginner. The Noelene Holloway trained chaser had her last start at Gosford in June, where she recorded an outstanding victory over Evil Punk in 29.77. The daughter of Lochinvar Marlow has a love affair with this track, having recorded five wins and two minor placings from just eight starts.

Shoulders (2) is an extremely talented chaser who has a great opportunity to return to the winners circle this Friday night from box two. This beautifully bred son of Cosmic Rumble and Bit Stressed’ last win was a speedy 29.77 performance at Wentworth Park back in October. Making his debut at Gosford for trainer Anthony Azzopardi will need to step cleanly to ensure he’s competitive in this event.

Gosford Gold Cup Heat Four

In form training duo John and Melinda Finn have Anything Less (3) engaged in the least heat, who will be very well supported from box three after sizzling around Wentworth Park two weeks ago in 29.67. The son of Bekim Bale and Casey’s Angel has recorded 11 wins from 18 career starts thus far and has a huge motor when he winds up.

Rue De Kahn (2) returns to Gosford after a few starts at Wentworth Park and flew over the 515m distance at the beginning of this month in 29.74. Ideally drawn near the rails for trainer Dean Swain, the Group One National Futurity winner has two wins from three starts at this track and consistently finishes off her races strongly.

Silent Effective (5) comes into this heat after finishing second in the Goulburn Cup on Sunday. Despite a difficult box draw, the son of Cosmic Rumble and Best Percentage has a blistering personal best of 29.32 at Gosford and has won three out of four over the 515m. Trainer Darren Sultana will be hoping for some luck early on as this greyhound produces very strong finishes.

The first heat will commence at 8.38pm AEDT, with the winner and runner up from each event moving through to next week’s final.

2014 Group One Sale Cup Final Preview

THE early speed will be on in the Sale Cup, to be run on Boxing Day, but there are also several more than handy stayers who have claims on the $75,000 feature.

In what is shaping as an intriguing affair on paper, many of the runners are speedy sprinters, who may be tested by the 650 metre trip, while there are also a few stayers in the mix, giving the race some added strength.

Let’s see what the trainers had to say going into the last Group race of 2014.

Box 1
Race Odds
$10
Heat Replay
 
Texas Titan
Trainer
Jeff Britton
Owner
Nathan Wilson
Prizemoney
$47,390
Last 10 Starts
1422861131
July
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Vapour
Whirl
- Foot
Luce
Start Fair Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,634 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
29 10 5 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
34 72
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 2 0 1
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – “He will probably want to get off the track a little bit so box one is probably not ideal, but we will just wait and see what happens.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.49 37.49 6.21 6.21
Box 2
Race Odds
$9.00
Heat Replay
 
Agent Jack
Trainer
Steven McKenna
Owner
Forte Alcock syndicate
Prizemoney
$31,975
Last 10 Starts
1816516142
March
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Bekim
Bale
- Flowering
Lily
Start Good Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,453 Rating 92
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 11 2 1
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50 64
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 1 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 5 0 1
Steven McKenna (Trainer) – “It is is favourite box so hopefully he puts his best foot forward. He seemed a little bit flat in his heat, I don’t know whether that may have just been from the travelling, but I am hoping he comes out firing on Friday night. Although I was a little disappointed with his overall time in his heat, he did what he needed to do to make the final and I think he should run out the distance strong. I’m just keeping my fingers crossed.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.31 (2nd) 37.31 (2nd) 6.11 6.11
Box 3
Race Odds
$21
Heat Replay
 
Zipping Spike
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Brad Canty
Prizemoney
$25,685
Last 10 Starts
1111327132
March
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Smooth
Fancy
- Navigator
Miss
Start Slow Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,617 Rating 87
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
16 8 3 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50 88
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 0 1 1
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
ARG Comment – “Lightly raced dog that faces a tough challenge in the final against some of the best chasers going around in Victoria at present. He isn’t quick early, so will need to stay out of trouble and get a bit of luck in the running.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.34 (2nd) 37.34 (2nd) 6.24 6.24
Box 4
Race Odds
$2.45
Heat Replay
 
Star Recall
Trainer
Jeff Britton
Owner
Kevin Dover
Prizemoney
$181,055
Last 10 Starts
1188171151

March
2012

  Black   Bitch   by   High
Earner
- No
Recall
Start Excellent Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $4,211 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
43 23 7 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
53 79
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 2 0 0
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – “I wouldn’t say it is ideal how she is drawn, there is a bit of pace drawn directly outside her and that is the last thing that we needed. It was a really good run last week, I am hoping she will just get 20 metres of clear running early in the final, I just don’t know if she is going to get it.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.18 37.18 6.15 6.15
Box 5
Race Odds
$10
Heat Replay
 
Kiltah Magic
Trainer
Kelly Bravo
Owner
Sly Fox syndicate
Prizemoney
$29,500
Last 10 Starts
4654611171
September
2012
 

Red
Fawn

  Bitch   by   Kilty
Lad
- Beltah
Magic
Start Excellent Running Wide Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,475 Rating 98
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
20 10 0 2
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50 60
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 0 0
Kelly Bravo (Trainer) – “Initially we thought it was a bad box but not once we saw how the field was drawn. Allen Deed is on her outside and she has a bit of pace on her inside so it probably isn’t too bad. We are hoping she will show enough pace to be up near the lead because I don’t think she would be able to come from behind, she seems to be more of a frontrunner.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.21 37.21 6.04 6.04
Box 6
Race Odds
$4.60
Heat Replay
 
Allen Deed
Trainer
Andrea Dailly
Owner
Jan Wheeler
Prizemoney
$198,805
Last 10 Starts
2154761521
December
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Jarvis
Bale
- Greta
Bale
Start Fair Running Wide Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $4,057 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
49 20 11 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41 63
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 1 0
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 0 0
George Dailly (Co-Trainer) – “I would rather him drawn on the outside than the inside. The way he went up the straight last week, he only had one dog on his outside and he nearly pushed him out and into the grass early. The wider he is, the better he is. I was very happy with how he went last week overall because I wouldn’t really consider him a true stayer. He had a lot of good dogs chasing him and he hung on well and ran the best of the night, he did a very good job.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.15 37.15 6.23 6.23
Box 7
Race Odds
$4.40
Heat Replay
 
Space Star
Trainer
Rob Britton
Owner
Camilla Limon
Prizemoney
$79,300
Last 10 Starts
3153212131
June
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Bekim
Bale
- Tonto
Tears
Start Fair Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $3,304 Rating 90
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
24 14 3 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
58 88
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 3 0 0
Robert Britton (Trainer) – “He has stepped up to the top level very well. He won and won well in his heat, he did it the hard way, but to be honest I thought he might have gone a little bit better. I think there is some improvement in him, I would like to see him run up to his trial time.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.34 37.34 6.23 6.23
Box 8
Race Odds
$21
Heat Replay
 
Zipping Felix
Trainer
Peter Dapiran
Owner
Hallinan Hallinan syndicate
Prizemoney
$27,385
Last 10 Starts
1455127311
May
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Turanza
Bale
- Natalie
Rass
Start Slow Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $944 Rating 89
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
29 8 4 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
28 55
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 2 0 0
ARG Comment – “Ran a top race last week to claim his heat, but his is a very strong final and he will need luck with three wide runners drawn on his direct inside.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.25 37.25 6.35 6.35
1st Res
Race Odds
$3.00
Heart Replay
 
Sweet It Is
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Two Bear’s syndicate
Prizemoney
$602,165
Last 10 Starts
2211121162
November
2011
  Black   Bitch   by  

Mogambo

-

Off
Springer

Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $12,043 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
50 16 12 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
32 64
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 1 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – “Australia’s best stayer who ran a credible second in her heat last week. That was her first start at the track so she is sure to improve. She is one greyhound that should never be discounted.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.35 (2nd) 37.35 (2nd) 6.38 6.38
2nd Res
Race Odds
$18
Heat Replay
 
Deadly Boy
Trainer
Steven McKenna
Owner
Anthony Forte
Prizemoney
$67,870
Last 10 Starts
1217151322
March
2012
  Black Dog     by  

Superman

- Dyna
Gabi
Start - Running - Finish -
Prizemoney Rating $ 1,331 Rating -
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
51 18 8 5
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
35 61
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 1 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – “Received a 28 day suspension at Sale for failure to pursue the lure with due commitment. Will not be taking his place in the field, even if there are scratchings.”
Best Sale Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
37.37 37.37 6.17 6.17

Star Recall (4) has been desperately unlucky not to have won a Group One and I think she will finally get her chance on Friday night. She is blessed with early speed and she should be up near the front early on. She may be threatened early by Kiltah Magic (5) on her direct outside, but that runner wanted to shift off the track a bit last week which shouldn’t hinder Star Recall, a railer. The Jeff Britton-trained greyhound proved that she is very strong with a 37.18 heat win, just three one hundredths off the best of the night set by Allen Deed.

Kiltah Magic was the quickest early last week in the heats, but she cannot afford to let Star Recall slip underneath her on the rails as her overall time was better.

Allen Deed (6) is a Group One winner and is better boxed here than what he would be on the inside. Last week he wanted to get off the track early on, so he will be giving ground if he does that again. He has wide runners boxed directly on his inside and outside so will have to avoid getting tangled up if they are all trying to get off the track at once. If he can get some clear galloping room, he is right in it, but will need some luck.

Agent Jack (2) ran a good race behind Allen Deed last week. He hit a few flat spots but hung on well. I think he should improve off that run and he is boxed where he wants to be tonight, his biggest issue is that he has a runner on his inside that will want to get off on the first turn.

Space Star (7) is all class but will need to be able to adapt to the step down in distance from the longer journey against the top class greyhounds. He wont be able to give any of these too much of a head start.

The Group One Sale Cup is race eight at Sale this Friday and is set to jump at 9:42pm.

Allen Deed The Fastest Qualifier For 2014 Sale Cup

Adelaide Cup winner Allen Deed has qualified fastest for the Group One Sale Cup to be run and won on Boxing Day with a superb 37.15 effort tonight over the 650 metre trip.

Starting as the $2.30 favourite from box seven, the son of Jarvis Bale and Greta Bale jumped a little awkward before recovering in the straight to race into third around the first turn. Charging into the back and the Andrea Dailly- trained chaser showed a brilliant burst of acceleration, finding the front and striding to the line two and a half lengths clear of a gallant Agent Jack in second position.

It was just Allen Deed’s second start over the track and distance after being run down by Sisco Rage at his last start. The classy campaigner seemed to derive great benefit from that hit out and will definitely be a key player in Friday’s $75,000 to the winner final.

Another impressive performance was from WA speedster Star Recall which blitzed her rivals to score by just under six lengths in a hot 37.18. It was her first start at Sale and she was ultra impressive, making it her third win from four starts since stepping up over the middle distance.

Now trained in Victoria by Jeff Britton, Star Recall has now won 24 races with 11 minor placings from 43 starts.

Jeff also won the last heat with Texas Titan too good from box one. A member of the fantastic Vapour Whirl – Foot Luce litter, Texas Titan was having his first go over the testing trip, his only other attempt at a middle distance journey being the 595 at Sandown where he won in April.

The striking black dog appeared to get a little tired in the run to the line, although that was to be expected, clocking 37.49.

Jeff’s brother Rob Britton qualified a runner for the final with Space Star claiming the opening heat. The son of Bekim Bale and Tonto Tears relished the wide draw, giving him room to move, sweeping around the outside to race to the lead on the home turn. Although he got a little weary a few metres before the line, Space Star was able to hold on to defeat Deadly Boy by half a length in 37.34.

Sweet It Is was all the rage in the fourth heat, but she was only able manage second behind the Peter Dapiran- prepared Zipping Felix. As per usual, the daughter of Mogambo and Off Springer dropped back to last early before making her move mid-race. However, Darren McDonald’s star stayer found plenty of congestion before powering home to finish under two lengths off the winner that clocked 37.25. All honours were with the winner which put in a gutsy effort himself, flashing home from midfield to score his eight win at start 29.

The remaining heat was taken out by the in form Kelly Bravo kennel with Kiltah Magic. She bounced straight on the bunny from box two and was never in danger, holding out Zipping Spike by two lengths in a speedy 37.21.

The final of the Group One Sale Cup will be run this Friday evening.

The box draw for the final is as follows:

1   TEXAS TITAN – Jeff Britton

2   AGENT JACK – Steven McKenna

3   ZIPPING SPIKE – Darren McDonald

4   STAR RECALL – Jeff Britton

5   KILTAH MAGIC – Kelly Bravo

6   ALLEN DEED – Andrea Dailly

7   SPACE STAR – Rob Britton

8  ZIPPING FELIX – Peter Dapiran

9   SWEET IT IS – RES – Darren McDonald

10  DEADLY BOY – RES – Steven McKenna

2014 Group One Sale Cup Heat Preview

Six heats of the Group One Sale Cup will be held tomorrow night over the testing 650 metre trip.

Worth $75,000 to the winner, the Sale Cup was first run 1968 with some stars of the track featuring on the honour roll such as Chariot Supreme, Miss Brook, Mantra Lad and Destini Fireball. Last year’s race was taken out by three time Group One winner Dyna Nalin.

Group One Sale Cup Heat One – 6:48pm

Rob Britton looks set to qualify for another Group One final with the brilliant Space Star (8) drawn ideally in the pink. The son of Bekim Bale and Tonto Tears is a dual track record holder with a massive motor and has been racing competitively at the top level at his last few starts. He has won 13 from 23 and should go close to recording another win here.

Zipping Maggie (4) debuted at the track last week, running fourth behind Dyna Kayla. At the start before that she finished second in the Group Three Summer Cup at Wentworth Park and, although she hasn’t won in a while, she has been racing the nation’s best stayers and has been far from disgraced. She races at her best when leading and looks capable of doing so tonight.

Deadly Boy (1) is having his first start over the track and distance, but has won well at The Meadows over the middle distance so he should be capable of running out the trip. He has a  brillant record from box one so should go well from where he wants to be.

Perfect Tess (7) has clocked 34.17 at Sandown Park so must also be respected.

Group One Sale Cup Heat Two – 7:09pm

WA bitch Star Recall remained in the care of Jeff Britton after competing in the Melbourne Cup final and has made quite an impact since stepping up to the middle distance. Although finishing midfield at her last start, she had recorded two slick wins at The Meadows (34.26 and 34.01) prior to that. She should be able to find the lead from box seven and, although it is her first start at Sale, her class should get her over the line.

Tyra Giselle (3) is exceptionally bred being out of the great Paua To Burn, she is a last start 34.64 winner at The Meadows so must be included.

Shall She Rock (2) has been mixing it with some classy chasers of late and should enjoy being drawn in box two whilst Go Jetta Go (8) has a handy record from the pink and should be finishing strongly.

Group One Sale Cup Heat Three – 7:31pm

Eliza Blanche (2) is a highly promising bitch that loves an inside draw and should go close to finding the lead early on. She has been racing against some exceptional chasers lately and has recorded wins at Sandown (34.02) and The Meadows (34.19). Under the care of Darren McDonald she should go well

Allen Deed (7) is drawn out wide where he wants to be and is a freakishly fast greyhound when at his best. He recently contested the Ballarat Cup final before stepping up to the 650 last start when finishing second to Sisco Rage. He should derive great benefit from that run and be better for it when the lids fly open tomorrow night.

Agent Jack (4) is first up since his fourth placing in the Ballarat Cup behind Luca Neveelk. He is a very strong greyhound who should relish the extra distance here.

Group One Sale Cup Heat Four – 8:14pm

Australia’s best stayer, Sweet It Is (2), will be aiming to bounce back from her last start failure in the Group Three Summer Cup and should appreciate the slight drop in grade. She has a tendency to drop out early and find a lot of trouble in running, so she always needs a lot of luck, but on her night she is better than any of these by a long mile.

Sisco Rage (4) defeated Allen Deed over the track and distance in 37.38 at his last start. The advantage of having a look at the track should favour him over a few other runners in this affair.

Ralphy Cinel (8) clocked a flying 33.94 in a heat of the Sir John Dillon Memorial at Sandown two starts back before running third in the final to the in-form Lamia Bale. He doesn’t appear very well suited out wide but he is too fast to leave out.

Group One Sale Cup Heat Five – 8:33pm

Should be a cracking heat with the likely favourites being Hostile (6) and Blinker’s On (7).

Hostile made the step up over the middle distance two starts back and won impressively in a smart 34.19 at The Meadows. He returned the following week and ran second behind Star Recall. That form is solid going into a race like this and, if he can run out the extra 50 metres, he should be in the finish despite the ordinary draw.

Blinker’s On has been knocking on the door for a feature win for a while now and gets his chance to make it through to another Group final here. He finished fifth behind Lamia Bale in the Sir John Dillon Memorial last start but is far better suited over this journey.

Kiltah Magic (2) will go close to leading from her inside draw and should be up near the front for a long way. She ran a fast 33.96 at Sandown two starts back but she is unraced over the 650 so it will be a big test for her.

Mepunga Hayley (3) is the class runner as the winner of the Group One Maturity Classic earlier this year but she is racing below her best at the moment and is a little hard to follow.

Group One Sale Cup Heat Six – 9:15pm

Dyna Kayla (6) is hard to follow but is a flying machine when she is on the task. She recorded a fast 37.11 win over the track and distance last start and a repeat of that would see her hard to beat, despite being drawn in box six.

Texas Titan (1) looks suited by the rise in distance here. He is a moderate beginner over the sprint trip but may find himself near the lead early here and he would be hard to run down if he is on the bunny.

Zipping Rory (8) is a recent winner of the Summer Cup at Wentworth Park before finishing at the tail of the field at his track debut last week. He is a classy dog but will need a bit of luck to cross from box eight.

Volksjager Blue (2) is a litter brother to Shot To Bits and he has run some handy placings over the middle distance at Geelong recently. He may not be quite good enough to win, but he can definitely run on into a minor placing.

2014 Group One Hobart Thousand Final Preview

The Hobart Thousand is the oldest race in Australia and has been won by some of the sport’s finest since it was first run in 1935.

The 2014 Group One Hobart Thousand will see a terrific lineup of some of the most promising young chasers in the country.

Lets have a look at each runner individually.

Box 1
Race Odds
$3.60
Heat Replay
 
Big Ticket
Trainer
Steven Clarke
Owner
Pat Sofra
Prizemoney
$22,785
Last 10 Starts
1122151511
December
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Fabregas - Bella
Portrait
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,753 Rating 98
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
13 8 2 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
62 85
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 3 0 1
Steven Clarke (Trainer) - He has got his box so hopefully he takes advantage of it. He can be a little bit tardy from the boxes but if he can begin with them he certainly has the speed to match it with them.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
25.90 25.90 5.12 5.12
Box 2
Race Odds
$2.40
Heat Replay
 
Dyna Villa
Trainer
Jenny Hunt
Owner
Paul Wheeler
Prizemoney
$469,060
Last 10 Starts
3181311131
October
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Collision - Roxio
Bale
Start Good Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $19,544 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
24 15 2 5
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
62 92
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 0 0
ARG Comment – Melbourne Cup winner that was very impressive in his 25.94 heat win. Has been jumping consistently well lately and would prove very hard to catch if he bounces on the bunny.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
25.94 25.94 5.07 5.07
Box 3
Race Odds
$51
Heat Replay
 
Breaker’s Tip
Trainer
Gary Fahey
Owner
G & G Fahey
Prizemoney
$14,450
Last 10 Starts
3231112211
October
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Mogambo - Dennes
Point
Start Fair Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $850 Rating 87
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
17 7 5 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41 88
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 4 4 1
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 0 1
ARG Opinion – Has won five of his last seven and began well last week but he comes up against a terrific field and looks like he will have to improve a few lengths or hope for a lot of interference to win.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
26.22 26.37 5.05 5.05
Box 4
Race Odds
$12
Heat Replay
 
Blurred Lines
Trainer
Kelly Bravo
Owner
Brett Bravo
Prizemoney
$75,860
Last 10 Starts
1712122871

March
2012

  Black   Dog   by   Batrim
Bale
- Witch
Fantasy
Start Risky Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,107 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
36 11 9 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
31 67
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 3 2 0
Kelly Bravo (Trainer) – It is probably not the greatest box for him because he needs a clear few strides early to get moving, if he gets that he goes ok.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
26.23 26.23 5.11 5.11
Box 5
Race Odds
$5.00
Heat Replay
 
Above All
Trainer
Robert Britton
Owner
Allison Lee
Prizemoney
$31,165
Last 10 Starts
1421211141
July
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Magic
Sprite
- Kara
Janx
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,833 Rating 96
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
11 7 2 0
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
64 82
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
ARG Opinion – His heat run was his first start since finishing fourth in the Group One Melbourne Cup behind Dyna Villa. He put in a terrific run last week and is right in the race if he can begin cleanly.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
26.16 26.16 5.10 5.10
Box 6
Race Odds
$18
Heat Replay
 
Hellyeah Bolt
Trainer
Anthony Bullock
Owner
Hellyeah syndicate
Prizemoney
$88,090
Last 10 Starts
4656212341
September
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Dyna
Lachlan
- Flash
Diamond
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,545 Rating 93
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
57 27 9 5
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
47 72
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
19 10 3 1
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 1 1 2
Anthony Bullock (Trainer) – I give him a big chance. I think it depends on what the one (Big Ticket) and the two (Dyna Villa) do at the start…if he begins like he did last week I will be very happy.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
25.75 25.96 5.04 5.04
Box 7
Race Odds
$6.50
Heat Replay
 
Ride The Rails
Trainer
Kelly Bravo
Owner
Nadine Brown
Prizemoney
$52,165
Last 10 Starts
2132726311
October
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Cosmic
Chief
- Pearl
Napoleon
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,086 Rating 94
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
48 17 13 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
35 75
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 2 3 0
Kelly Bravo (Trainer) – His heat run was impressive. Hopefully being drawn off the track will allow him to get clear room to get into the race and he won’t find too much trouble. The Tassie dog in the pink (Señor Slamma) seems to go pretty straight, it doesn’t crash down to the fence, so as long as he (Ride The Rails) can begin with them I think he will improve a lot from his heat.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
26.05 26.05 5.12 5.12
Box 8
Race Odds
$18
Heat Replay
 
Senor Slamma
Trainer
Gary Johnson
Owner
Robyn Johnson
Prizemoney
$35,665
Last 10 Starts
1111211111
April
2012
  Fawn   Dog   by   El
Grand
Senor
- Tequila
Mall
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $793 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
45 20 2 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
44 56
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
14 8 0 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 2 1 2
Gary Johnson (Trainer) – He likes the outside but the key to the dog is that he has got to jump to win. He usually runs pretty good sections and his second section is where he usually clears out away from them.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
25.88 26.23 5.01 5.12
1st Res
Race Odds
$7.00
Heart Replay
 
Kicking Rocks
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Ryan Tredway
Prizemoney
$28,560
Last 10 Starts
2247311112
October
2011
  Red
Fawn
  Dog   by  

Cosmic
Rumble

- Really
Satisfies
Start Slow Running   Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,298 Rating 89
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 9 6 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41 82
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 1 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – A very fast greyhound that is capable of clocking some scintillating times. He is tardy at box rise but has great acceleration when he is given time and room to balance up. Will need luck if he gains a start but is more than capable on his night.
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
- 25.95 (2nd)

-

-
2nd Res
Race Odds
$7.00
Heat Replay
 
Buckle Up Wes
Trainer
Ted Medhurst
Owner
R Johnson & S Sutton
Prizemoney
$551965
Last 10 Starts
3213728124
June
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Collision - Everlong
Bale
Start Good Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $ 10,614 Rating 99
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
52 30 8 5
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
58 83
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
15 8 3 1
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – Class runner of the field that has been a little disappointing at his last two starts. Despite this, he is one of the best dogs in the race and would prove hard to beat if he gains a start
Best Hobart Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
25.77 26.01 (2nd) 5.09 -

Dyna Villa (2) is the class runner of the race. He is the winner of this year’s Melbourne Cup and is a genuine Group One star. He is drawn well in box two on Thursday night and if he can get room to move in the early stages he should get to the front and prove very hard to run down.

A few of the dogs in this race are hit and miss early but, if they time the start right, they can really fly. 

Big Ticket (1) looks to be a quality dog in the making and he has the ability to match it with any of these if he begins with them. Box one will help him but he can’t afford to let them get away from him in the early stages. He is the fastest qualifier coming into the race so must be respected.

Above All (5) ran a phenomenal race in his heat after striking trouble in the early stages. He didn’t manage to break 26 but the style of the win was amazing. You would think if he steps well he is good enough to challenge for the lead and take out the title.

Senor Slamma (8) is in terrific form as a winner of 11 of his past 12 starts, but he comes up against a whole new class of greyhound tonight and will have to make a big step up in grade.

Ride The Rails (7) has had two starts back since fracturing a hock for two outstanding wins. He is fast enough to win but he can mix his box manners and that won’t be any help in a Group One field. 

Hellyeah Bolt (6) is a quality dog but his form is hit and miss. He was back to his best last week but it is a big ask to do it again the following week and he only has an average strike rate from the green. Not saying he can’t win, but he would need to do everything right.

Beaten Brigade Make For A Quality Hobart Undercard

While all the focus will be on the Group 1 Hobart Thousand, the R.W (Bob) Brown Memorial Consolation event will again take its regular spot on Tassie’s biggest night, and as such stands as much a part of the Thousand series as the heats and final itself.

Since 1999, the consolation event has been named in memory of the late Robert William “Bobbie” Brown, the local legendary trainer whose name is etched all over the in the history of the race, and sport in the state of Tasmania.

Apart from being a stellar boxer (a winner of 69 of 72 bouts fought), Bob Brown became an inductee of the Tasmanian Greyhound Hall of Fame in 2008. He was witness to every Hobart Thousand that took place during his lifetime, from the first running in 1939 right up until his death which actually occurred on December 17, 1998; the same day 59th running of the race.

Despite winning just about everything a trainer could win on the Apple Isle, the Hobart Thousand eluded him as a trainer. However it remains a great gesture for the Hobart club to honour him with what has proven to be a high-class listed event in its own right.

One doesn’t have to look back any further than to last years’ race when a virtually unknown-at-the-time black dog named Buckle Up Wes took it out, with the eventual Launceston Cup winner, Varcoe, third in the same event.

Emerald Lee won the 2011 version for Debbie Cannan, while Penny’s Angel led all the way previous to that. Even a Victorian in Banger Harvey can be seen on the recent honour roll for the Bob Brown Memorial.

But the 2014 running of the race is arguably the best version to date, with five of the seven runners coming second in their respective heats last week.

Though Buckle Up Wes isn’t there to go back to back, there are three interstate chasers that have remained to challenge an excellent crop of local stars.

Kelly Bravo will take a duo of chasers into the main event two races later, and her chaser Hekate Belle was less than a half-head away of making it a Group 1 trio. It couldn’t quite catch Senor Slamma from box one on that occasion, but gets the chance to atone from the same draw this week. It will likely be one the favourites, with a consistent form line in the past month.

Fellow Victorian, Kicking Rocks had no problems coming out the 461-metre start last week, but found Big Ticket a touch too fast. It broke 26 seconds on that occasion being beaten narrowly and a repeat would go close to getting it back into the winners’ circle for master trainer, Darren McDonald.

While Nicole Mcrae’s veteran Walk Hard could only manage fourth in its heat, it was the manner in which the son of Bit Chili finished the event that suggests it will be hard to beat. While he may be giving away youth to his rivals, the dog is no stranger to the Elwick track and with any luck in running will be storming over the top.

The race won’t be an all-Victorian show, as Night Tremors and Bruny Venture couldn’t be racing in better fashion to defend their home turf.

Trainer Eileen Thomas would be well aware of the brilliant mid-race burst the Night Tremors possesses, and it will be right in the picture again from the outside draw. Given the amount of interstate talent, this Tassie youngster could well be the knockout dog for punters looking for a bit of value.

Likewise for Bruny Venture, who despite the six-rug should be well in the race at the half way point and well placed to capitalise on any mid-race bother that may come the way of those behind him.

The R.W Bob Brown Memorial Consolation is scheduled to run at 9.05pm as race six on Hobart’s Thursday night fixture – a race that carries a lot more weight than the $4465 on offer for the winner.

R.W Bob Brown Memorial Consolation Box Draw

Box 1 – Hekate Belle – Kelly Bravo
Box 2 – Kicking Rocks – Darren McDonald
Box 3 – Wynburn Rush – Ben Englund
Box 4 – Warehouse Mouse – Mick Stringer
Box 5 – Bit Hot Rusty – Shane Whitney
Box 6 – Bruny Venture – Gary Fahey
Box 7 – Walk Hard – Nicole Mcrae
Box 8 – Night Tremors – Eileen Thomas
Reserve
Izon Destruction – Shane Whitney

Lamia Bale Leads All The Way In Sir John Dillon Memorial

Lamia Bale (2) notched up her third victory within the space of a week when taking out tonight’s Group Three Sir John Dillon Memorial at Sandown Park.

Stepping brilliantly from box two in the 595 metre feature, the Steve Collins trained bitch strode straight to the front and was never in doubt, stretching out beautifully to record a three and a half length triumph in a scintillating 34.09.

Starting at $4.50, Lamia Bale defeated the Darren McDonald trained Awesome Project (1) which was sent out as the punter’s elect at $3.00. The son of Collision and Honour Phase railed through into second spot early and held his position well, although he was no match for the winner which was in a class of her own out in front.

The fastest qualifier from the heats, Ralphy Cinel (7), ran on well to grab third after railing underneath Joey Valdez (3) to sneak into the placings.

Lamia Bale has now won 10 races from 33 racetrack appearances. After winning her heat of the Sir John Dillon last Thursday, the daughter of High Earner and Maple Bale returned to the races last Sunday to score in a heat of the Group Two Laurels Classic in a hot 29.37.

She will venture back to Sandown Park on the weekend for her semi-final of the bitches only series where she will need to finish in the top two to secure a berth in the decider on December 21.

2014 Group Three Sire John Dillon Memorial Full Results

1. Lamia Bale (Box 2) – Steve Collins
2. Awesome Project (Box 1) – Darren McDonald
3. Ralphy Cinel (Box 7) – Joe Borg
4. Joey Valdez (Box 3) Ben Divirgilio
5. Blinker’s On (Box 4) – Brooke Ennis
6. Skyfire (Box 8) – Shane Drummond
7. Nockabout Aussie (Box 6) – Peter Akathiotis
8. Flying Twist (Box 5) – Andrea Dailly

Scratchings – Starc (1st Res), Big Kat (2nd Res)

Time: 34.09
Margins: 3 1/2 x 1 1/2

2014 Group Three Sir John Dillon Memorial Preview

A cracking field will contest the 2014 running of the Group Three Sir John Dillon Memorial tomorrow night. Run over 595 metres at Sandown Park, the race will see some of the state’s elite sprinters make the step up in trip while some of its consistent stayers will drop back down to the middle distance.

Lets take a look at the runners in this year’s race and hear what their connections have to say about their chances.

Box 1
Race Odds
$4.00
Heat Replay
 
Awesome Project
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Brad Canty
Prizemoney
$304,890
Last 10 Starts
1163131661
March
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Collision - Honour
Phase
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $5,257 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
58 29 7 8
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50% 74
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 7 0 1
Darren McDonald (Trainer) – He should go alright, he has got a good box and he has had a good week so he has no reason not to go well. He will be relying on a couple of the other dogs, the two and the three get off the track, so hopefully he can get a run through and be pretty competitive.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.23 34.23 9.13 9.13
Box 2
Race Odds
$4.00
Heat Replay
 
Lamia Bale
Trainer
Steve Collins
Owner
Paul Wheeler
Prizemoney
$58,855
Last 10 Starts
2572231711
July
2012
  Brindle   Bitch   by   High
Earner
- Maple
Bale
Start Risky Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,839 Rating 97
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
32 9 7 3
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
28 59
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 2 1 0
Steve Collins (Trainer) – “She wants the middle of the track but I still think the draw will suit her because she can angle out on the corner. I think her and the one (Awesome Project) will be the frontrunners and I think she will probably make the race for him. She runs about three wide for most of the trip, he has probably got the right draw on the inside of her. She will probably shepherd him away from the other dogs going into the corner, but it just depends on how he comes out and how she comes out.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.11 34.11 9.19 9.19
Box 3
Race Odds
$11
Heat Replay
 
Joey Valdez
Trainer
Ben Divirgilio
Owner
Sharp syndicate
Prizemoney
$43,450
Last 10 Starts
3215162112
May
2012
  Fawn   Dog   by   Dyna
Lachlan
- Miki
Thompson
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,975 Rating 96
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 9 7 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41 86
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 1 0
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 0 1 2
Ben Divirgilio (Trainer) – Box three probably suits him. There is speed in the one and two but Blinker’s On doesn’t have much pace, hopefully he can do everything right to put himself in the race. It was his first go at the 595 last week and he got a little bit lost going through the catching pen so I think he will find a little bit on that run.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.43 (2nd) 34.43 (2nd) 9.40 9.40
Box 4
Race Odds
$4.50
Heat Replay
 
Blinker’s On
Trainer
Brooke Ennis
Owner
Troy Little
Prizemoney
$52,900
Last 10 Starts
2321111262

May
2012

  Blue   Dog   by   Cosmic
Rumble
- Good
Oil
Start Slow Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,204 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
24 9 6 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
38 67
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 3 1 0
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 0 0
Brooke Ennis (Trainer) – He is drawn ok, but it is probably not his suited distance. He put in quite a good run last week, he got squeezed coming out of the boxes and he made his way though the field quite good. I think he will be better for the run, he hadn’t had much work going into his heat after the Bold Trease. He has just got to do everything right and hopefully he can be up near the leaders early.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.18 32.35 (2nd) 9.35 9.86
Box 5
Race Odds
$18
Heat Replay
 
Flying Twist
Trainer
Andrea Dailly
Owner
Kim Holloway
Prizemoney
$84,430
Last 10 Starts
1112444263
August
2011
  Black   Bitch   by   Velocette - Valley
Twist
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,508 Rating 85
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
56 15 6 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41 78
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
12 1 3 1
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 1 1 1
ARG Opinion – Does not have a great record from the draw or over the track and distance. Lacks the early zip of some of the other runners and is probably better suited over the staying trip.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.65 34.55 (2nd) 9.22 9.48
Box 6
Race Odds
$14
Heat Replay
 
Nockabout Aussie
Trainer
Peter Akathiotis
Owner
Peter Akathiotis
Prizemoney
$100,970
Last 10 Starts
1134566143
July
2011
  Blue
Brindle
  Dog   by   Knocka
Norris
- Aussie
Nicky
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,364 Rating 87
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
74 16 12 9
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
22 50
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 0 3 1
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
9 2 1 1
Peter Akathiotis (Trainer) – The draws haven’t been kind to him lately, he has been getting five, six, seven and eight and he is not really suited to them. He is not a brilliant beginner, his strength is his finish so I am hoping he can run a place. I can envisage a fair bit of trouble in the race because there are a few dogs that want to get to the lead early and they are starting on the bend so I want him to miss the kick a little bit and go back to the rail.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.21 (2nd) 34.41 (3rd) 9.41 9.62
Box 7
Race Odds
$3.00
Heat Replay
 
Ralphy Cinel
Trainer
Joe Borg
Owner
Michael Crowe
Prizemoney
$60,940
Last 10 Starts
1211116441
November
2011
  Black   Dog   by   High
Earner
- Fantasy
Parade
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,904 Rating 92
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
32 12 6 2
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
38 63
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 4 1 1
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 0 0 1
ARG Comment – Dazzling heat winner last Thursday but he does not have a great record from the outside boxes. If he can step cleanly and position himself well in the early stages he will take a power of beating but he will have to overcome his dislike of wide draws to do so.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
33.94 33.94 9.08 9.10
Box 8
Race Odds
$31
Heat Replay
 
Skyfire
Trainer
Shane Drummond
Owner
Hermanos Cielo syndicate
Prizemoney
$36,020
Last 10 Starts
2122243142
March
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Dyna
Lachlan
- Proven
Lilly
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,059 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
34 8 11 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
25 69
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 0 3 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 0 2 0
Shane Drummond (Trainer) – I just hope he gets a clear run. I think the eight will suit him because I think some of the others might crash to the rails and he doesn’t do that so hopefully he can stay wide and get a clear run around them through the first bend.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.47 (2nd) 34.47 (2nd) 9.48 9.48
1st Res
Race Odds
$7.00
Heart Replay
 
Starc
Trainer
Andrea Dailly
Owner
Chris Nutt & Shaun Evans
Prizemoney
$42,865
Last 10 Starts
534225F423
October
2012
  Black   Dog   by  

Bekim
Bale

- Glory
Of
Love
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,531 Rating 84
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
28 5 10 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
18 64
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 0 1
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – Very strong chaser but takes a while to start his motor. Probably not well suited to this distance and class.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
34.62 (3rd) 34.62 (3rd)

9.56

9.56
2nd Res
Race Odds
$21
Heat Replay
 
Big Kat
Trainer
Carl Schlensog
Owner
Carl Schlensog
Prizemoney
$46,890
Last 10 Starts
3213728124
March
2012
  Black   Bitch   by   Bekim
Bale
- Messines
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $ 1,042 Rating 82
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
45 8 8 7
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
18 51
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 0 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment – Looks outclassed and will need a lot of help if she were to gain a start.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
35.35 34.34 (4th) 9.62 9.62

Awesome Project (1) is in the best kennel in Australia and he was very good in claiming his heat in 34.23 last Thursday. He did get a little tired in the final stages but that was to be expected at his first run over the middle distance since winning over 600 at Gosford in November last year. Lamia Bale (2) is expected to shift off the track which would provide him with a trouble free run on the rails and if he steps and is able to hold his position he should take a power of beating.

Lamia Bale (2) is in terrific form and was a dominant 34.11 heat winner at her 595 metre debut last week. She will want to get off the track a bit so it is important that she clears the field before doing so to avoid causing herself trouble.

Joey Valdez (3) has been crying out for the middle distance for a long time and was solid in his second placing behind Awesome Project last week. He did a few things wrong in his run last week and with an attempt at the trip under his belt he should improve.

Blinker’s On (4) drops back in trip which isn’t ideal but he is probably the strongest runner in the race. He can’t afford to give them too much of a start but if he gets clear room he is a major player.

Ralphy Cinel (7) is the fastest qualifier and broke the elusive 34 second barrier in his heat but he is not as good from the outside as he is from the inside. He is normally a great beginner but can’t afford to do anything wrong against this classy lineup.

2014 Group One Hobart Thousand Heats Preview

The Apple Isle’s most prestigious series, the Group One Hobart Thousand, kicks off this Thursday night at Hobart with eight heats of the time honoured feature. Each heat victor will go through to the $75,000 to the winner final which will be held the following Thursday on December 18.

The Hobart Thousand is the oldest feature race in Australia and was first run back in 1935 as the Hobart Cup at the old TCA grounds. It was first run as the Hobart Thousand in 1939 before reverting back to the the Hobart Cup in 1942 for two years. The race was not held in 1944 or 1945 due to the war but recommenced in 1946 as the Hobart Thousand and has remained under that name to this day.

The Tassie race has been won by some stars of the sport including Rookie Rebel (1958), Ophir Doll (1961-62), Benjamin John (1969), Black Aztec (1981), Brother Fox (1985) and Dyna Tron (2011).

Last year’s race saw one turn king Paw Licking defeat recent Melbourne Cup winner Black Magic Opal in track record time.

Lets have a look at the heats of this year’s race.

Heat One – 7:58pm

The first lot of Victorian raiders step out in the first heat, looking to dominate yet another feature race series.

Hekate Belle (1) is a classy bitch but she can be hard to catch as she does tend to be hit and miss at the start. Box one should be a big advantage for her and she boasts a great record from the cherry with six starts for three wins and two minor placings. As a recent 29.29 winner at Sandown, she is definitely one to keep an eye out for from the inside.

Scenic Shot (3) will start very close to favourite in the opener. She comes into the series  as a last start winner at Warrnambool where she clocked a BON 25.42. The Victorian city winner will be aiming to emulate the feats of her father, Dyna Tron, which won the race in 2011, while her trainer, Michelle Mallia-Magri, took out the 2012 running with Blackalls Boss.

Señor Slamma (8) is the best local shot in the heat and is one of the most consistent sprinters in Tasmania at present. The well named son of El Grand Señor and Tequila Mall has only been beaten once in his past 11 starts and he has run 25.88 over the track and distance. He only has one win from six starts wearing pink but he is a quality dog and should be right in contention for a berth in the final.

Heat Two – 8:19pm

The second heat will see just seven runners face the starter. 2014 Melbourne Cup winner Dyna Villa (4) is one of the most promising chasers in the country but he will have to contend with an awkward draw in box four. He comes into the race following his last start in a heat of the Ballarat Cup where he finished third behind the eventual series winner Luca Neveelk. He has trialled in 25.92 in preparation for this assignment so despite the poor draw he is right in the race if he can get some clear galloping room early.

Top Secret (2) is another Victorian which has won 11 races from 41 career starts. He has been racing a little below his best at his last few runs, albeit against top company,  but if he can find his feet he is a great shot.

Wynburn Wizard (6) is a local chaser capable of breaking the 26 second barrier which puts him right into calculations. The box won’t help but he is a very consistent boy as a winner of nine from 22 and he will only need a little bit of luck to feature in the finish.

The remainder of the field are pretty even. Pipstar (8) could provide a bit of value, she has won four at the track with a best time of 26.05 and she wont mind being drawn out wide in the pink.

Heat Three – 8:41pm

Size Does Matter (3) is a recent edition to the Rodney Ransley kennel in Tassie, transferring from Brooke Ennis late last month. Ennis still owns the son of Bekim Bale and Size It Up and will be hoping that he can go better than his Tasmanian debut where he finished fifth behind Señor Slamma. He has only won once from four attempts from box three. Looking at his box statistics, it is interesting to note that he has won eight of his 14 races from box one, which he has drawn 11 times during his 33 start career.

Blurred Lines (4) is capable of putting some slick times on the board but he can be hard to catch. He has been racing some great dogs lately so his form is probably better than it reads, but he still has a tough task ahead from box four.

Brunys Venture (7) looks to be a very promising youngster, but this will be his biggest test to date from box seven. He has run BON times at Hobart, Devonport and Launceston throughout his career and has won two of his last three over the track and distance. Definitely the leading local hope in this heat.

Heat Four – 9:05pm

Quartz Bale (2) has been dominant in his limited starts back home in WA, winning nine of 11 racetrack appearances to date.  The 38 kilogram light fawn dog is in the hands of Paul Stuart and has had a look at the track last Saturday, running 25.98 on trial morning. Being such a big boy, it does take him a while to find top gear, but he does have plenty of upside and will only need a bit of luck in running to go close to winning.

Ride The Rails (5) bounced back to his best form with a dazzling 29.23 Sandown victory last week. Now trained by Kelly Bravo, the son of Cosmic Chief and Pearl Napoleon has the potential to blow this field away if he brings his best on Thursday night.

Punk Pirate (3) heads to Hobart from Victoria as a winner of five of his past seven starts. He had no luck in his heat of the Ballarat Cup, finishing seventh behind Blue Giant. He is more than capable of reversing that result and going close here.

That Was Then (6) is a track specialist which has won eight races at Hobart while Get It Right (7) and Night Tremors (8) have had just 16 and 13 starts respectively. Both have strong strike rates and look like they can make the step up in class.

Heat Five – 9:25pm

Tasmanian champ Buckle Up Wes (1) is a dual Group One winner which will be looking to score his first success at the elite level in his home state. He put in an average run last start at Hobart but he is the class runner of the race and he is undoubtably the one to beat. He loves the track, as a winner of eight from 14 with a best of 25.77. He would probably be better boxed a few off the rails but he still has a fantastic record from the red with four wins from five starts.

Hellyeah Bolt (5) hasn’t been racing at his best recently but he has a 25.76 personal best here and is too good to leave out when on song, despite having to overcome box five.

Waymore’s Blues (6) looked like being an outstanding sprinter earlier in his career but he has been a little disappointing. I still maintain that he is capable of winning a group race, just not sure he is going well enough for this to be the one.

Punk Panther (2) is a more than handy sprinter but this will be a big test for him.

Heat Six – 9:45pm

Some great youngsters engaged in this heat including Kicking Rocks (7) from the Darren McDonald kennel. Despite winning nine from 21, I don’t think people realise how fast this bloke actually is. Earlier this year he broke his maiden in at The Gardens in an airborne 29.30, a time usually reserved for Group class greyhounds. He should be right in this race after trialling in 26.09 on a slow track.

Big Ticket (3) looks like being the real deal too and the Victorian pup will be having his first race start at Hobart  after a 25.96 trial last Thursday. He loves the inside so should be suited in box three.

Axis Bale (6) has only had nine starts but has shown promise. He will have to overcome box six but he does look to be very talented.

Heat Seven – 10:08pm

Above All (4) hasn’t had a start since finishing fourth in the Group One Melbourne Cup last month but the former Kiwi has run 25.84 in a trial to prepare for his Hobart debut. A winner of six races from just 10 starts, it is a testament of his class that he has been able to mix it with the best Australia has to offer so successfully with such  little experience. He will be a short favourite.

Good Odd Demons (1) is a little below his best and doesn’t have a great record at Hobart, but he has his favourite draw from which he has recorded five wins from seven starts.

Winsome Tommy (8) has won two at the track and doesn’t mind being boxed out wide, but he will probably need to improve on his 26.32 pb to win the race.

Heat Eight – 10:28pm

White Spyro (5) is back to her best and has had one start at Hobart for a 26.26 win last month. You would expect her to improve on that time with a look at the track.

National Time (6) has been mixing his form but is right up to this class. He has won six races from box six so, although it is not ideal, he should be able to overcome the poor draw.

Buckle Up Fletch (7) is a younger half brother to Tassie champ Buckle Up Wes and he looks to have his fair share of ability. He doesn’t mind being off the track so I can’t see box seven posing any issues.

Walk Hard (3) is yet to win in his two starts since returning from a spell but he is a very fast animal on the bunny. He made the final of the Hobart Thousand two years ago, it would be an incredible achievement to contest the 2014 edition too.

Christmas Comes Early For Kel And Keybow

Less than 24 hours after star chaser Keybow won the Group One Brisbane Cup at Albion Park, his Hunter Valley based owner Kel Lean was already driving back down to Sydney to start work.

The father of four flew back to New South Wales in the early hours of Friday morning, giving him just enough time to celebrate his speedster’s success in the Sunshine State with his wife Michelle.

Trained by Darren McDonald, Keybow started a $2.40 favourite to take out the Brisbane Cup. Despite his short quote, it was never going to be an easy race for him to win.

Also in the field was last year’s winner Kiss Me Ketut (Box 8), gun Queensland sprinter Iva Vision (Box 2) and sizzling beginner Exhibitionist (Box 4).

“I don’t get overly confident going into races because there is generally eight good dogs in these finals and I know how hard it can be to win a fifth grade final let alone a Group One final”, Kel said of his thoughts going into the race.

Punters expected Keybow to circle the field and lead from box seven, but that didn’t happen.

Stepping slightly tardy, the black greyhound mustered pace in the run to the first turn, a good feat considering he had Kiss Me Ketut applying pressure on his outside.

Down the back and he was looming as an ominous threat on the outside of the leader, You Can Talk (Box 3) but had to dig deep as Fusaichi Kahn (Box 6) joined the leading duo three wide, forcing Keybow into a high speed sandwich.

Keybow showed his might and determination, pushing through the pair to find the front and racing away to triumph by three and one quarter lengths in 29.98.

“He needed to do a lot of work and he needed a few things to go right for him to win that race, he was really gutsy in the end and he showed his class to get the win”, Kel said.

“It was a very tough performance and I had my heart in my mouth when they were down the back, not knowing if he was going to get spat out the back. He did well, he pushed through and he showed his will to chase.

“It was a gutsy win. There are a lot of dogs that would have pulled out if they got in a sandwich like that but he pushed through, came out the other side and ended up putting a few lengths on them.”

The Group One triumph took Keybow’s prize money earnings to a whopping $483,885. In addition to the Brisbane Cup, Keybow has claimed the Group One Perth Cup and the Group Three Silver Bullet during a career that has seen him face the starter 38 times for 18 wins and 11 minor placings.

To see Keybow going from strength to strength on the track is especially rewarding for Lean and his family because he was bred in their backyard from the first bitch they ever owned.

The son of Take The Kitty and Key Exit remains a part of the family and Kel said he hasn’t forgotten them either.

“We went down and saw him after the race and on his way home and he was happy go lucky, ready to go again, up on his toes and with his tail wagging a hundred miles an hour.

“As soon as he heard my voice his ears pricked up and the tail started going, even after being with Darren for twelve months he still remembers who I am.”

Kel said Darren will now give Keybow a few weeks off. It has been a tough campaign for the 30.8 kilogram rocket with his six runs back from a spell seeing him contest the Topgun (6th), Silver Bullet (1st), Melbourne Cup (3rd) and Brisbane Cup (1st).

“He is going to have a couple of weeks off, his fitness is there but he has had a pretty gruelling past month and a half with six pretty hard runs. After his few weeks off he will get set for Cranbourne in the new year.”

And Kel is set to enjoy the remainder of the journey with Keybow whose success has changed the lives of himself and his whole family.

“The ride has been unbelievable. It is life changing and just incredible, it still feels unreal.”

2014 Group Three Summer Cup Final Preview

Champion bitch Sweet It Is will highlight the field for the Group Three 2014 Summer Cup at Wentworth Park on Saturday night.

She will look to emulate her feat from the Bold Trease a fortnight ago and add another black type victory next to her name.

Victorians originally made up half of this year’s field, however the scratching of Beks will see that number reduced to three. This will give the local dogs an extra crack at the arduous task of keeping the trophy in New South Wales.

No finalists from the 2013 running of the event appear again this year. That race was won by the recently retired Dyna Willow.

$25,000 awaits winning connections for the 2014 event which is Race Eight on the card and scheduled to jump at 9:48pm

here is an in-depth look at the race with comments from connections;

Box 1
Race Odds
SCR
Heat Replay
Beks SCRATCHED
Trainer
N/A
Owner
N/A
Prizemoney
N/A
Last 10 Starts
N/A
N/A N/A N/A by N/A - N/A
Start N/A Running N/A Finish N/A
Prizemoney Rating N/A Rating N/A
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
N/A N/A
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
SCRATCHED 
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
N/A N/A N/A N/A
Box 2
Race Odds
$1.35
Heat Replay
Sweet It Is
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Two Bears syndicate
Prizemoney
$600,565
Last 10 Starts
3222111211
November 2011 Black Bitch by Mogambo - Off Springer
Start Fair Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $12,512 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
47 16 11 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
34% 66%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 3 3 1
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 1 1 0
ARG Comments: The Queen of Australian staying racing and a four time Group One winner. She showed uncustomary early speed in her heat to sizzle and run a near record 41.55. She is the class in the field and only needs a semi-clear run to win.
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.55 41.55 16.30 16.30
Box 3
Race Odds
$11.00
Heat Replay
Dusty Moonshine
Trainer
Denice Warren
Owner
Alanna Orbell
Prizemoney
$49,725
Last 10 Starts
1146111363
September 2011 Blue Bitch by El Grand Senor - Kiacatoo Pearl
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,260 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 11 3 2
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50% 73%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
9 4 0 2
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 1 0
Denice Warren (Trainer): “I have always said she is a couple of lengths of being a good group dog and that is the case again here. She should strip fitter after last week. She has had her share of injuries and that makes it hard to manage her racing. She needs to find her early pace again in this race. I have picked a couple of races out for her coming up and she will race until she comes in season. After that, her owner has a Collision straw, so that’s where she will be heading.”
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.86 42.57 16.18 16.68
Box 4
Race Odds
$21.00
Heat Replay
Greta’s Rescue
Trainer
Rod McDonald
Owner
Graham Codner
Prizemoney
$19,115
Last 10 Starts
1424132122
June 2012 Blue Brindle Bitch by Cosmic Rumble - Dana Mel
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $490 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
39 8 9 5
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
21% 56%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 1 3 0
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 0 2 2
Rod McDonald (Trainer): “She is probably the youngest and most inexperienced in the field in terms of staying racing. The draw doesn’t look too bad, she has a couple of slower ones inside. The main worry is the five, she led our heat last week. Maybe she will hold the outside dogs out and we will get a nice run though.”
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.27 42.70 16.51 16.58
Box 5
Race Odds
$26.00
Heat Replay
Joane
Trainer
Christine Proctor
Owner
David Gilders
Prizemoney
$27,735
Last 10 Starts
5123324144
June 2012 Black Bitch by Magic Sprite - Verity Chase
Start Excellent Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $792 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 3 3 2
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
20% 60%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 3 3 2
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 1 0 0
Christine Proctor (Trainer): “She is in a very hard race, I don’t know if she is up to this sort of field just yet. She was a horrible beginner over the sprints early in her career but she is coming out very well over the distance. If she can run a place, I would be over the moon.”
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.40 42.82 16.51 16.58
Box 6
Race Odds
$15.00
Heat Replay
Avondale Maurick
Trainer
Ron Bell
Owner
Keenaz syndicate
Prizemoney
$48,455
Last 10 Starts
7721261431
February 2011 Red Fawn Dog by Knocka Norris - Sirocco Pearl
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $969 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
50 15 8 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
30% 58%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
21 5 4 1
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 2 0
Ron Bell (Trainer): “We didn’t get any favours with the boxes, we have three in Saturday and they have all drawn box six. Really, he is in a very hard race, he is a 42.4 dog and you can’t win these running that sort of time. He does have some pace and he could even lead, but he would have to hold out the best dog in Australia. He did manage to hold out Space Star a few weeks ago and win but this is a lot harder.”
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.34 42.57 16.28 16.55
Box 7
Race Odds
$9.00
Heat Replay
Zipping Rory
Trainer
Bethany Dapiran
Owner
M & F Hallinan
Prizemoney
$55,715
Last 10 Starts
43515721F2
February 2012 Red Fawn Dog by Mantra Lad - Cho Chang
Start Risky Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,548 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
36 11 4 8
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
31% 64%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 1 1 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 0 0 4
Peter Dapiran (Kennel Representative): “He seems to have recovered well from his fall at Sandown, he just needs to begin as well as he can and hopefully get a clear run, he really needs that clear run.”
 
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.75 42.49 16.13 16.44
Box 8
Race Odds
$6.00
Heat Replay
Zipping Maggie
Trainer
Peter Dapiran
Owner
M & F Hallinan
Prizemoney
$90,875
Last 10 Starts
6221436223
May 2012 Dark Brindle Bitch by Turanza Bale - Natalie Rass
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $3,029 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
30 12 5 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
40% 70%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 2 1 2
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 0 2 1
Peter Dapiran (Trainer): “I would probably prefer her drawn underneath Zipping Rory just in case he holds her out a little bit, but hopefully she can begin well and find the lead.”
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.78 42.57 16.00 17.02
1st Res
Race Odds
$26.00
Heart Replay
Raramuri
Trainer
Ian Morgan
Owner
Victor Peruch
Prizemoney
$16,260
Last 10 Starts
4415213325
August 2012 Dark Brindle Bitch by Trewly Special - Now Quoted
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $625 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
26 4 7 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
15% 58%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
9 3 1 2
Box Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
ARG Comment: A young stayer who has not won since September and is yet to be proven in the top grade. She gets her chance against the best in the country here but she will need to improve on her best of 42.15 to be a hope.
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.15 42.76 16.23 16.35
2nd Res
Race Odds
$11.00
Heat Replay
Pumped Up Zarr
Trainer
Neil Staines
Owner
William Miller
Prizemoney
$60,210
Last 10 Starts
3551651115
August 2010 Black Dog by Big Daddy Cool - Midnight Drama
Start Good Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,204 Rating X
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
50 15 8 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
30% 54%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
14 7 2 1
Box Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
ARG Comment: Veteran chaser who had been in some of the best form of his career before a fifth to Avondale Maurick in the heats. He will need to jump and hope for luck if he gets a gig in this one.
Best Wentworth Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.07 42.91 16.04 16.78

The speed in the race is likely to come from Zipping Maggie (8), Joane (5) and Dusty Moonshine (3). Zipping Rory (7), Avondale Maurick (6) and Greta’s Rescue (4) should also be close to the speed.

The equation for the race is simple, if Sweet It Is (2) can secure a reasonably clear passage in transit, the race is hers for the taking.

If she finds too much trouble, it is wide open for those up front to pinch. Zipping Maggie is the obvious class runner of the others but will need to find her best to win.

Keybow Unlocks Top Honours In The Group One Brisbane Cup

Keybow (7) has finally cracked his second Group One victory following a tenacious performance in tonight’s Brisbane Cup at Albion Park.

Stepping a touch slow from box seven, the son of Take The Kitty and Key Exit was given a bit of room to move early when Fusaichi Kahn (6) crashed left just after the start.

Despite Kiss Me Ketut (8) racing stride for stride with him in the run to the winning post on the first occasion, Keybow was able to muster pace and slip into a handy position behind lamplighter You Can Talk (3) around the first turn.

Entering the back straight and Keybow loomed up beside You Can Talk, eyeballing the leader as they both chased with all their might. Halfway down the back and the Perth Cup winner looked to be in a spot of danger as Fusaichi Kahn applied pressure three wide with Kiss Me Ketut hot on the leaders heels in fourth position.

But Keybow dug deep and showed his class, pushing his way from between the Queensland pair and striding a length clear around the home turn. As he stormed to the line, Keybow extended his lead to two and three quarter lengths in a time of 29.98.

Fusaichi Kahn ran a terrific race to nail second for Glenda Dart while Kiss Me Ketut, last year’s Brisbane Cup winner, lost no supporters back in third.

Trained by Darren McDonald and owned by Kel Lean, Keybow has now won 18 of his 38 starts with the $75,000 winner’s cheque taking his earnings beyond $480,000. It was the seventh Group final he has contested during his career and, amazingly, Keybow has been in the money on six of those occasions.

He is now expected to head towards the Group Two Cranbourne Cup, which he finished second in last year, before heading to Wentworth Park for the 2015 Group One Paws of Thunder in January.

Group One Brisbane Cup Full Results

1. Keybow (Box 7) – Darren McDonald
2. Fusaichi Kahn (Box 6) – Glenda Dart
3. Kiss Me Ketut (Box 8) – David Burnett
4. Cyndie’s Special (Box 1) – Bill Elson
5. Iva Vision (Box 2) – Peter Young
6. Le Sirenuse (Box 5) – Tom Tzouvelis
7. You Can Talk (Box 3) – Peter Ruetschi
8. Exhibitionist (Box 4) – Darryl Chapman
Scratchings: Happy Haswell (1st Res), Clash Of Kings (2nd Res)

Time: 29.98 Margins: 2 3/4L x 1 1/4L

 

2014 Group One Brisbane Cup Final Preview

The 2014 Brisbane Cup looms as a terrific final with eight supremely talented chasers all looking to secure the riches.

Four locals will take on four interstate contenders where the winner will walk away $75,000 richer.

The race is set to jump at 9:16pm QLD time, lets look at each of the runners and see what their connections have to say.

Box 1
Race Odds
$15
Heat Replay
 
Cyndie’s Special
Trainer
William Elson
Owner
Cynthia Elson
Prizemoney
$64,765
Last 10 Starts
6235742662
November
2011
  Black   Bitch   by   Premier
Fantasy
- Regal
Silver
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,199 Rating 91
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
54 14 18 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
26% 70%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
42 10 14 5
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 2 3 0
Bill Elson (Trainer) – You can’t beat box one. She should go with them and if she can keep her position on the rails around the first turn then she will have a chance. She has plenty of mid- race strength but they are all good dogs in it.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.86 30.07 (2nd) 5.54 5.69
Box 2
Race Odds
$3
Heat Replay
 
Iva Vision
Trainer
Peter Young
Owner
Conton Miller Young syndicate
Prizemoney
$117,925
Last 10 Starts
1181121121
March
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Ivan
Brown
- Visualization
Start Modeate Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $5,896 Rating 96
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
20 13 4 0
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
65% 85%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
12 9 1 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 2 0 0
Peter Brown (Trainer) – It is a good field. I think he will go alright but we are definitely not confident of winning the race, there are too many speedsters in there. It all depends on how he gets to the first corner. He rails good, hopefully when he hits the first turn he can weave his way through.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.62 30.15 5.55 5.72
Box 3
Race Odds
$34
Heat Replay
 
You Can Talk
Trainer
Peter Ruetschi
Owner
Kenneth Crawford
Prizemoney
$75,385
Last 10 Starts
5613325221
March
2012
  Red
Brindle
  Bitch   by   Outa
Credit
- Where
Are
You
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,538 Rating 92
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
49 19 11 7
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
39% 76%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
31 13 6 5
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 1 1 1
Peter Ruetschi (Trainer) – She has been a good bitch for us. It will be a hard race for her to win, but she is in it because she has got early pace. She can’t go as quick of some of the dogs but she is there, that’s the main thing.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.94 30.20 5.52 5.55
Box 4
Race Odds
$6
Heat Replay
 
Exhibitionist
Trainer
Darryl Chapman
Owner
Darryl Chapman & Darren Scells
Prizemoney
$75,385
Last 10 Starts
5613325221

December
2011

  Red
Fawn
  Bitch   by   Superman - Naughty
Nicki
Start Excellent Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,753 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
43 16 7 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
37% 63%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
15 6 1 1
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 2 2 0
Darryl Chapman (Trainer) – It’s all about her start, if she gets far enough in front she wins. I don’t think the box really matters if she jumps because she will just go to the lead but if they crowd her we will have a problem.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.91 29.91 5.49 5.49
Box 5
Race Odds
$31
Heat Replay
 
Le Sirenuse
Trainer
Tom Tzouvelis
Owner
Toni Graham
Prizemoney
$41,675
Last 10 Starts
1F15841211
January
2012
  Black   Bitch   by   Pure
Octane
- Absolute
Style
Start Fair Running Rail Finish

Good

Prizemoney Rating $1,302 Rating 85
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
32 13 9 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41% 78%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
18 6 4 1
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 2 1 0
Tom Tzouvelis (Trainer) – She is an outside chance. She will try her best but she has got an awful draw, but you have got to contend with what you have got. Her main chance is if she can lead, she can come from behind, but you can’t afford to give these sorts of dogs a start.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
30.06 30.17 5.58 5.58
Box 6
Race Odds
$17
Heat Replay
 
Fusaichi Kahn
Trainer
Glenda Dart
Owner
Michael Laffey
Prizemoney
$34,715
Last 10 Starts
2232472311
February
2012
  White
And
Brindle
  Dog   by   Where;s Pedro - Daydream
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,119 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
31 8 12 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
26% 74%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
17 6 7 2
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 1 3 0
ARG Comment - Claimed his heat at double figure odds. The well bred chaser isn’t blessed with much early speed and will have to contend with an awkward draw. While he has plenty of ability, he will need clear galloping room and a lot of luck to cause an upset two weeks in a row.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.88 29.96 5.57 5.57
Box 7
Race Odds
$2.50
Heat Replay
 
Keybow
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Kel Lean
Prizemoney
$408,885
Last 10 Starts
1415361131
December
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Take
The
Kitty
- Key
Exit
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $11,050 Rating 98
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
37 17 7 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
46% 76%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 2 1 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 1 0
Darren McDonald (Trainer) – I think he has got a really good chance. He is well drawn, if he can come out of the boxes well he should be right. He is very good when he gets on the bunny.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.67 29.81 5.57 5.60
Box 8
Race Odds
$7.50
Heat Replay
 
Kiss Me Ketut
Trainer
David Burnett
Owner
David Burnett
Prizemoney
$157,345
Last 10 Starts
6375811522
August
2011
  Black   Dog   by   Bombastic
Shiraz
- Spiral
Siyan
Start Good Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,579 Rating 93
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
61 22 8 9
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
36% 64%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 2 1 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
11 6 1 1
David Burnett (Trainer) – He didn’t quite box the way he needed to in his heat but he will be better for the run this week. If I had to pick what box I wanted I would have picked box eight, I couldn’t have asked for a better draw. Keybow is the main danger but there are a couple of local dogs that know the track and have early speed that can make or break the race.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.82 30.06 (2nd) 5.58 5.59
1st Res
Race Odds
 
Heart Replay
 
Happy Haswell SCRATCHED
Trainer
Reg Kay
Owner
Reg Kay
Prizemoney
$89,930
Last 10 Starts
2111811152
November
2012
  Blue
Brindle
  Dog   by  

Surf
Lorian

- Teenage
Dream
Start Slow Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $ 4,087 Rating 99
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 15 4 0
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
68% 86%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
12 7 2 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Opinion – Boom chaser that put in a great performance in his heat, running second to Exhibitionist. He is a slow beginner which will not help him if he gets a start but he has a copious amount of talent.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.64 30.23 (2nd)

5.57

5.65
2nd Res
Race Odds
$12
Heat Replay
 
Clash Of Kings
Trainer
Stephen Whyte
Owner
Stephen Whyte
Prizemoney
$48,610
Last 10 Starts
1121132572
July
2012
  Black   Dog   by   Fear
Zafonic
- Queen
Lauryn
Start Moderate Running Middle Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $ 2,701 Rating 86
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
18 8 4 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
44% 72%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 1 0
Box – Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comment: Regally bred chaser which ran a solid second in his heat last week. Has plenty of talent but is yet to win over the track and distance so will need a bit of luck if he gains a start against some of these seasoned Albion Park experts.
Best Albion Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
30.30 (2nd) 30.30 (2nd) 5.61 5.65

While Keybow (7) is set to start as favourite, I think Exhibitionist (4) can land the cash if she begins like she did last week.

She has began flawlessly at her last two starts and if she can make it three in a row I think she will lead the field. Once in front, they will all have to catch her.



Keybow is the obvious danger. He should relish the wide draw and will get every chance to muster speed and circle the field going around the first turn. 



Iva Vision (2) is a class animal but he will need to bring his best box manners as he can’t afford to give these type of dogs too much of a start. 



Kiss Me Ketut (8) is aiming to go back to back in the Brisbane Cup and is drawn perfectly in box eight. He is better than his last few starts read and he is right in the race. 



You Can Talk (3) should put herself into the race early, she will need a bit of interference behind her to be able to hold on.

When Will Racing Bosses Address The Facts?

As thousands of our readers would know, this column has been campaigning for some time about the unwise practice of forcing so-called stayers to back up in week to week 700m-plus races. The problem being that at least nine out of ten of them cannot do it – they are physically and physiologically incapable of reproducing their best.

The sub-text here is that the nation is no longer producing enough well-bred stayers. In turn, that is a reaction to the increasing concentration on sprinters – or sprinting sires – which can hopefully bring in a quicker return on the owner’s investment.

The sub-sub-text is that all this is the reason for the widespread increase in sub-400m races on TAB programs. Cannington had three 297m races at its Saturday meeting last week. Wentworth Park has been slipping 280m races into its Friday meetings. Albion Park actually built a new start for 331m races, as did Angle Park for 388m races. 300m-400m races now dominate most provincial meetings. All these are new trends.

Despite all the evidence, the industry is ignoring the massive shift in breeding patterns, except that it has been offering bonus prize money for provincial distance races (which generally means 650m or so) in the hope that the dogs will welcome a boost to their bank accounts by running further. But it is not working. Fields are hard to fill and, in the main, they are getting only those dogs that are not much good over shorter trips.

More importantly, clubs/authorities (cross out one) are still doing the wrong thing. Just last Saturday we saw The Meadows run the final of a Grade 5 heat/final series over 725m with seven days between the two runs. Here are the differences in times between those two runs.

1. +0.19 Big Kat 2nd

2. +0.35

3. +0.44 Julie Bale 3rd

4. -.09

5. +1.33

6. +0.37

7. +0.36

8. +0.18 Starc Ist

That was not the only distance race on the program. Another ordinary Grade 5 race over 725m followed. Of those eight starters, only one had a break of more than seven days prior to the distance race (Global Lad – 9 days). Four other starters had breaks of only four days. Here are the difference between Saturday’s times and those run in their previous race (corrected for a change in distance as appropriate).

1. +0.21 Reap the Benefit 2nd

2. +0.45

3. +0.29

4. +0.39

5. +0.22

6. +0.06 Global Lad 3rd

7. -0.13 Heaps of Ability 1st

8. -0.04

Before you get too excited about that win note that Heaps of Ability ran 43.25, which is pretty pedestrian. It ran past a bunch of tiring leaders on the home turn.

In other words, following short breaks, there is a heavily defined pattern of running poor and/or worse times the second time around. Previous checks reported in this column have shown comparable results.

Wentworth Park also ran two heats of a heat/final distance series on Saturday night and with similar results to those at The Meadows – barring the amazing win by Sweet It Is. Amongst the placegetters were Zipping Maggie, Zipping Rory and Dusty Moonshine, each of which ran worse time than the week or race before, and much worse than their best. Next week will see the final of that series, where the only interest will be on Sweet It Is’ winning margin (providing it does not run into too many backsides).

What, then, is the point of scheduling heats and finals seven days apart? Of the 32 dogs listed above only one, Sweet It Is, is capable of turning on two good runs. Or, 3% can do it, 97% cannot.

Of those four races, three favourites – Reap The Benefit $2.10, Julie Bale $2.30 and Zipping Maggie $2.10 – all failed, while Sweet It Is won at $1.30, so punters would not have been impressed. Again, what is the point?

Most racing schedules are organised a long way ahead, particularly for major events. But many are not and can easily be changed.

We already have a few welfare rules preventing quick backups, more which address high temperatures as well as frequent enforced outages for injury or illness, so why not expand those a little to stop this senseless practice with distance dogs?

There is a dual or triple challenge here because all three levels of racing are involved in one way or another – national, state and club – whether for rule changes or week to week management.

Postscript:

Trainer Darren McDonald seems to have done a good job in encouraging Sweet It Is to leave the boxes more quickly these days. But I would take issue with him when he claims she is better off from outside boxes. I suggest the more correct claim would be that she either (a) does not like being crowded or (b) does not handle getting through a field very well, or (c) both. Perhaps this may have been the result of an incident as a pup?

Whatever it is, she has developed an Elektra-like habit of jumping well then easing back when she does not have clear air. At Wenty on Saturday none of that happened. She jumped well and was out free as a bird behind the leader and well clear of other dogs. Hence the lightning 41.55 time after a neat 16.30 sectional! Next week with a full field in the final may be different. That’s why you should never take anything less than even money about her.

From the inside three boxes, Sweet It Is has won 6 of 16 attempts, or 37%. From the outside three boxes she has won 8 of 23, or 35%. It’s the running that matters, not the box.

In passing, note that her six-dog race on Saturday at Wenty attracted a miserable $9,157 on the Win tote. You might have expected double that figure. Also related to 720m races at Wenty, why are we still offered 16 sec-plus sectional times when a timer is available at around the 5 sec mark – as evidenced in results published for 280m races which use the same boxes? The shorter time is much more relevant to a dog’s beginning ability.

Stewards Report, The Meadows, Race 8

“Radinka Bale crossed to the rail approaching the first turn, causing Skinny Vinnie and Buckle Up Mason to collide”.

No it didn’t. The other two made their way directly to the turn without hindrance, and well behind Radinka Bale.

Sweet It Is Scorches In 2014 Summer Cup Heats

Champion bitch Sweet It Is went within a whisker of the Wentworth Park 720 metre track record, when she dominated Heat Two of the Group Three 2014 Summer Cup on Saturday night.

The four-time Group One winning daughter of Mogambo and Off Springer (Flying Penske – Skullring) stopped the clock at a sizzling 41.55, just 0.02 seconds outside the record held by Xylia Allen.

The 28kg black bitch, renown for her lightning run home, surprised many when she jumped well from box one and held down second place early before taking up the ascendancy at the post the first time and exploding away.

Once she had done that, it was more a matter of whether or not she could break the track record as opposed to winning the race.

In the wash-up, she scored by no less than 15 lengths from Zipping Rory (2) with Dusty Moonshine (4) 1 1/4 lengths further astern in third placing. Beks (5) grabbed fourth place to advance to the final.

The win takes the Darren McDonald trained super star’s earnings beyond $600,000, an amount which could easily grow by another $25,000 after the final next Saturday night. There is a little doubt that she is in the best form of her career, winning five of her last six races and the Group Three title looks to be at her mercy next week.

Earlier in the night, the Ron Bell trained Avondale Maurick upset his more fancied rivals to take out the opening heat in 42.57.

The son of Knocka Norris and Sirocco Pearl (Malfoy – Pacific Style) exited box seven in the lead early before he was challenged and headed by Joane (2).

Joane maintained the lead down the back straight, however as the field swung for home, she was under siege from a quartet of dogs including Avondale Maurick on the fence and Greta’s Rescue (8) out wide.

Avondale Maurick railed superbly into the straight and kicked clear to land the event by two lengths from the youngster Greta’s Rescue with Zipping Maggie (4) finishing the race off well to grab third. Joane managed to hang on for fourth and claim a spot in next Saturday’s $25,000 to-the-winner final.

Qualifier’s for the 2014 Group Three Summer Cup Final (in no particular order) are as follows;

Avondale Maurick (Ron Bell)
Greta’s Rescue (Rod McDonald)
Zipping Maggie (Peter Dapiran)
Joane (Christine Proctor)
Sweet It Is (Darren Mcdonald)
Zipping Rory (Bethany Dapiran)
Dusty Moonshine (Denice Warren)
Beks (Patrick Bouchier)

Reserves
Raramuri (Ian Morgan)
Pumped Up Zarr (Neil Staines)

2014 Group Three Summer Cup Heats Preview

Group staying racing hits the Harbour City this Saturday night when Wentworth Park hosts two heats of the Group Three Summer Cup.

With next week’s final worth $25,000 to-the-winner, there is a great opportunity for greyhounds to qualify. Only 13 runners will contest the two heats with eight advancing to the decider.

Here is a look at the two heats;

Race 3 – Schweppes Summer Cup Heat 1 – 8:08pm

1 – My Miss Diva (John James) - A winner of six from 34 who has done most of her racing in northern New South Wales. She has only won one race here from six attempts and is likely to need luck to feature.

2 – Joane (Christine Proctor) - A young run on type who has been consistent at Wentworth Park, winning three and placing in five of her nine appearances there. She has been sharpened up for this with a few runs over the sprint trips and could be a rough hope at double figure odds.

3 – My Boy Brodie (Mick Player) - A winner of just two races who comes into this having never raced over the longer trip. He is yet to win in town and faces a sharp class rise here. He looks hard to have based on that data.

4 – Zipping Maggie (Peter Dapiran) - A Wentworth Park Group winner who took out the Chairman’s Cup here back in September. She has the pace to lead and boasts a personal best at the track of 41.78. Her recent performances have been slightly below her very best but she did make the Group One Bold Trease final last week at Sandown Park. She drops in class here and has to be considered as one of the main hopes.

5 – VACANT

6 – Pumped Up Zarr (Neil Staines) - Grand old campaigner who has been in great form of late, winning his last three over this journey. He will be up challenging for the lead early and loves the track with seven wins from 13 appearances there. He is a big hope again in this.

7 – Avondale Maurick (Ron Bell) - Does not win out of turn with four victories from 20 goes at this trip. He is also yet to flatter on the clock with his best of 42.34 unlikely to be good enough to win this. Place chances appear his best hope.

8 – Greta’s Rescue (Rodney McDonald) - An interesting youngster who has been bought along slowly by astute mentor Rodney McDonald. Has done most of her racing in the country with a win and two placings from her four Wentworth Park distance efforts. She is likely to be a fair way back but, with a clear run, could well run into a placing.

Selections: 4-6-8-2

Race 4 – Schweppes Summer Cup Heat 2 – 8:29pm

1 – Sweet It Is (Darren McDonald) - The undisputed Queen of Australian staying races who notched up her fourth Group On win last week. She possesses a freakishly strong finish and will relish the small field. She will start at a very short quote here and should be winning.

2 – Zipping Rory (Bethany Dapiran) - A consistent Victorian chaser who returns after falling in a heat of the Bold Trease a fortnight ago. He did spear the lids to win a heat of the Chairman’s Cup here in a rapid 41.75 and is very capable when he lands on the lure. That has been his only placing in four starts at Wentworth Park which is some sort of concern.

3 – VACANT

4 – Dusty Moonshine (Denice Warren) - Talented local bitch who returns from a six week break for this series. She has won four from eight at the track with a best of 41.86 and is usually very close to the lead in her races. Given the right breaks, she is a knockout chance.

5 – Beks (Patrick Bouchier) - Another Victorian who comes into this after making the final of the Group One Bold Trease last week. His strike rate is only fair and he makes his Wenty debut here so he is the type that would have to be taken on trust in this heat.

6 – VACANT

7 – Luzaka Icon (Marien Sullivan) - A seasoned distance campaigner who only yields moderate results in easier classes than this. She will be well back early and is unlikely to trouble the class dogs in this race.

8 – Raramuri (Ian Morgan) - A young up-and-comer who takes the plunge into Group racing in this event. She has won three from eight over the journey and boasts a best of 42.15. This will be a real litmus test for her but she has the ability to run a place.

Selections: 1-2-4-5

Keybow Claims Time Honours In Brisbane Cup Heats

The 2014 Group One Brisbane Cup looms as one of the most exciting editions on paper after six heats were run and won at Albion Park last night.

Favourite punters got off to a flying start in the first heat with Keybow saluting comfortably for leading Victorian mentor Darren McDonald.

Beginning evenly with the field from box three, the son of Take The Kitty and Key Exit quickly put the paw to the floor and crossed to the rails around the first turn. Once he found the front it was a case of times and margins, with the Perth Cup winner cruising to the line three and three quarter lengths clear of a gallant Cyndie’s Special in a slick 29.81.

Cyndie’s Special qualified for the big final next week, running a top race from box one for trainer Bill Elson.

The second heat saw boom Queenslander Happy Haswell sent out as the $2.20 favourite from box seven.

As he usually does, Happy Haswell came out a fraction behind the field before mustering pace to sit in fourth spot around the first turn.

However, by that time, the Darryl Chapman- trained Exhibitionist had already speared to the front and had a substantial break on the classy field chasing her.

Despite his best efforts, Happy Haswell couldn’t catch her in the run to the line as Exhibitionist scored by just under five lengths in a quick 29.91.

The consistent Bill’s Fantasy and reigning Brisbane Cup champ Kiss Me Ketut duelled for favouritism in the third heat with honours going to the former by the time the lids flew open.

Both were in the top half of the field in the early stages, with Kiss Me Ketut doing the better of the two as he sat second behind the leader Fusaichi Kahn.

It was another race where you had to be on the bunny, with Kiss Me Ketut unable to reel in the lamplighter in the home straight.

Starting at double figure odds, Fusaichi Kahn, a regally bred son of Where’s Pedro and Daydream, clocked a fast 29.96 in recording his eighth win from 31 starts.

Kiss Me Ketut did enough to earn his spot in the feature final where he will be aiming to become just the second chaser to win two Brisbane Cups since its inception in 1972.

Punters only wanted to be on one greyhound in the fourth qualifier and that was the Peter Young-trained Iva Vision which started at a skinny $1.20.

Stepping well from box two, he had plenty of time to find top gear in the run to the line on the first occasion and, once he found the front, it was all over. The son of Ivan Brown and Visualization stopped the clock in a handy 30.15 at what was his first run back in the Sunshine State since claiming the Group Three Sandown Shootout and running second in a heat of the Melbourne Cup.

Gun Victorian chaser Awesome Project was another short priced favourite in the fifth heat, looking to give Darren McDonald two through to the $75,000 to the winner final.

The son of Collision and Honour Phase raced in an ideal third position throughout the race but, just as he was about to start his run approaching the home turn , he was dragged down by another greyhound and lost all chances, ultimately finishing sixth.

His misfortune enabled the leader, Le Sirenuse, to skip away and record a three length triumph in 30.17.

The sixth and final heat lost its star attraction when My Bro Fabio was withdrawn due to injury earlier in the week. This opened the race up for the local stars, all looking to secure their spot in next week’s big one.

Beginning beautifully from box seven, You Can Talk found the front in the early stages and the daughter of Outa Credit and You Say So was never headed from that point onwards.

Race favourite Clash Of Kings tried gamely tried to chase her down but had to settle for second as You Can Talk triumphed by one and three quarter lengths in 30.20.

The box draw for next week’s Brisbane Cup is as follows:

1. Cyndie’s Special
2. Iva Vision
3. You Can Talk
4. Exhibitionist
5. Le Sirenuse
6. Fusaichi Kahn
7. Keybow
8. Kiss Me Ketut
Reserves
9. Happy Haswell
10. Clash Of Kings

It will be a big night at Albion Park next Thursday, with an additional two races added to the card.

ARG will have a full preview of the race prior to the final.

Group Two Ballarat Cup Heats Preview

The Group Two Ballarat Cup series kicks off tomorrow night with eight fantastic heats ensuring a terrific night of racing at the Morshead Park facility. First run in 1960, last year’s race saw an epic battle between one turn champs Paw Licking and Ronan Izmir down the straight with the latter ultimately victorious.

Ahead of tomorrow night’s action, lets have a quick look at the key players in each qualifier. To have a bet on any of the runners in the heats, open an account with Sportingbet for up to $700 in bonus bets.


Heat One – 8:17pm (VIC time)



King Surfa (2) is a litter brother to boom youngster Over Limit and this fellow seems to have plenty of ability himself. Trained by Darren McDonald, he has recorded victories in nine of his 17 career starts including a last start 30.10 triumph at The Meadows. He generally has great early zip and from box two he should be up there early.

Magic Diva (1) is drawn to perfection and will aiming to prevent King Surfa from finding the rails in the early stages. Magic Diva was the winner of this year’s Warrnambool Classic, she relishes box one with five wins and three minors from nine starts and she has enough pace to hold the lead.

Ultima Bale (6) is unbeaten from two starts over the track and distance but can’t afford to do anything wrong from the draw, while Punk Panther (7) boasts a quick 25.12 personal best.

Heat Two – 8:41pm (VIC time)



What a race this will be! Melbourne Cup hero Dyna Villa (3) will jump from box three off the back of his sensational success last Friday at Sandown. He has been stepping much better in his last few starts and appears to be maturing into a serious race dog. The regally bred youngster has had one start here for a third but expect to see a big improvement.

The obvious danger is drawn directly on his outside and that is Luca Neveelk (4). The blue speedster shows blistering early dash and is suited perfectly by the drop in distance on his last start appearance in The Melbourne Cup. He has never seen the track, but that shouldn’t worry him; he went into the heats of both the Melbourne and Geelong Cups without a trial and made both finals, taking out the latter.

Maximum Lil (1) is a last start 30.03 winner at The Meadows from the same draw so she can’t be ruled out, while Shameless Bandit (2) shows tremendous early dash but this is a definite rise in both class and distance.

Heat Three – 8:58pm (VIC time)

Some highly promising youngsters will take part in the third heat with Secret Spell (1) likely to start as favourite. A winner of seven from nine, the daughter of Batrim Bale and Wicked Witch clocked a flying 29.26 at Sandown two starts ago before finishing at the tail of the field in a heat of the Melbourne Cup.She has good early speed and looks the real deal.

Tiggerlong Await (7) faces a big step up in class but has won six from nine around the Victorian provincial circuits and has won one from one over the track and distance.

Ollie Bale (6) mixes his form but could easily feature if he brings his best on the night. The middle alley won’t help, but he is a Group One winner and should never be discounted.

Darcy’s Entity (3) has only missed a place in one of his 12 career starts thus far and he also shows pace once he hits the ground.

Sisco Rage (4) is a classy chaser but this is a big drop in distance from his recent starts.

Heat Four – 9:18pm (VIC time)



The fourth heat will see the return of Walk Hard (4) which has not been seen since September. He possesses freakish ability, having broken the track record at Warragul in January in a heat of the Cup which he won a week later. Box four won’t be much help as he takes a few strides to find top gear but being fresh might help him begin a little bit better. He doesn’t have much speed drawn around him, so that should help too.

Take Charge (1) should be able to go close to leading from the ideal draw while Allen Deed (5) is one of the fastest dogs in the country but will need everything to go his way from box five.

Heat Five – 9:41pm (VIC time)

Hekate Belle (2) is hit and miss at the beginning but if she gets the start right she should blow them away. The inside draw should help, despite the fact that her record from the two is only ordinary. She seems to do her best racing from odd numbers, whether this is a coincidence or the fact that she may need the extra time in the boxes to settle, I’m not sure, but she is definitely the one to beat. Two starts ago she scored a fast 29.29 win at Sandown over Chica Destacada before finishing third behind Star Recall in a Melbourne Cup heat. That is terrific form coming into this race and makes her hard to go past.

Mepunga Armagh (5) has done plenty of travelling lately and has performed solidly at the elite level. His form doesn’t look fantastic but when you consider the calibre of dogs he has been racing he comes right into calculations for this race.

Caustic Bale (4) has only had nine starts but has two BOD performances to his name at Geelong. He isn’t quick early, but with a clear passage he will make his presence felt.

Agent Jack (8) has a 29.27 win at Sandown to his name but he is another that doesn’t always begin well, while Hawk Alone (1) hasn’t won since June but is always thereabouts.

Heat Six – 9:58pm (VIC time)



The speed should come from the inside pair Dyna Nico (1) and Bills Back (2) which are both blessed with blistering early toe.

Bills Back has won his last three starts, all in best of day times, at Horsham, Warrnambool and Geelong and he has won 12 from 19 overall. He has run 25.64 in the past at the track and I think he can improve on that with a favourable draw.

Dyna Nico led but was run down at her last start at Sandown by Awesome Project. The step down to 450 metres should suit and if she can find the front she will go close to winning.

Marcus Joe (7) and Crackerjak Dak (8) have the class edge but neither can afford to give the inside pair too much of a start. Deadly Boy (4) and Quarrel Bale (3) both have claims and have recorded slick times throughout their careers but both are tardy early.

Heat Seven – 10:20pm (VIC time)

National Time (6) is a litter brother to Magic Diva which lines up in heat one and, like her, he is capable of some sizzling early sectionals. He has had a horror run with boxes throughout his 57 start career but has still managed 18 wins and 16 minor placings including six victories and one second wearing green. If he can reproduce his 25.16 performance here from three runs back he is clearly the one to beat.

Musquin Bale (1) mixes his distances but he can still sprint well, winning in 29.29 at Sandown last month. The inside draw should help.

Fleetwood Storm (7) is facing his biggest test to date but he looks to have a fair bit of ability. He can show pace and he should get a nice run into the race on the outside of National Time.

Nockabout Aussie (4) bounced back to his best with a 29.40 win at Sandown last Friday but he still didn’t step well on that occasion and, in a shorter race like this with plenty of early speed, I am prepared to risk him.

Heat Eight – 10:37pm (VIC time)

Blurred Lines (2) has been mixing it well against the top class and is better than his recent starts suggest. His last two runs have resulted in a seventh and eighth at Sandown but those performances were in a Prelude and heat of the Melbourne Cup respectively. In October he went straight to the front in a heat of the Adelaide Cup and returned the following week to run a terrific second behind Allen Deed in the final. He mixes his box manners but should get a good run from the two.

Innocent Til (6) is a superb greyhound and he will give this field a shake if he is at his best, but he hasn’t been seen since August which raises some concerns. Nonetheless, he is in astute hands with Jason Thompson who wouldn’t have him in unless he thought he was capable of winning. The son of Premier Fantasy and Proven Polly has won three from five over the trip and has a fast 25.11 to his name. Despite the awkward draw he must be respected.

El Grand Seal (1) is drawn to lead and should do so for most of the trip. She could pinch the race if she gets close to her 25.24 personal best.

Dyna Yemin (8) is unproven from out wide but he has been racing against some of the state’s best dogs in recent starts and can’t be left out.

The winner of each heat will progress through to next Wednesday’s $60,000 to the winner final.

Buybacks Blast The Ready 2 Race Sales At Bendigo

The Ready 2 Race sales is a fantastic concept and the day was a credit to the GRV and Bendigo Club from a hospitality point of view. Full race day style catering, a fully stocked bar and an open TAB provided breeders, trainers and buyers with everything they could have wanted.

Except for the opportunity to buy the dogs that they had come to purchase.

Plenty of dogs “went under the hammer”, but plenty didn’t. They might be listed as sold, but when they are being bought back does it really count?

One young bitch with plenty of early pace attracted a stack of attention and was sure to be a good buy for someone. Nup, bought back for $17,250. This is utterly ridiculous on many fronts, but isn’t the fault of the owner in any capacity.

High profile trainer Darren McDonald arrived with quality performers Bremer and Sig Sauer. Both were bought back and remain at Darren’s place according to Fasttrack. These two sons of Kinloch Brae – Great Gunns will now contest the potentially weak $25,000 race next year.

What are the options to make this fairer for those wanting to buy and sell legitimately? There were a few thoughts being thrown around by various people in attendance Saturday.

1 – Buybacks aren’t eligible to race in the series.
2 – Buybacks are charged at 25% instead of 10%.
3 – Make the auction an optional reserve auction. But those that place a reserve can’t race in the series.
4 – Option of withdrawing from auction if unhappy with the performance. Again, can’t race in the series.
5 – Buybacks pay full price of the purchase on the day and receive a 90% rebate the following week from the GRV. Buyers can’t pay 10% on the day, so it should be fair for all.

One thing is for sure, the current system makes it tough for genuine buyers to purchase a dog. There were instances where genuine buyers sat back and didn’t even get to “raise a paddle”. Another instance resulted in a buyer genuinely bidding to $15,000 and copping frowns from a person that was obviously buying back regardless of price.

It’s blatantly obvious that people don’t want to lose a young pup with genuine ability that hasn’t fired a shot in the sales heats. However, there needs to be something in place to separate the genuine buyers from the buybacks.

Also of note is that Dave Burnett was at the sales to buy, but left empty handed. He has been heavily involved in past sales at Bendigo and races group performer Kiss Me Ketut who has won in excess of $200,000 in prizemoney. Linda Britton was at the sales and didn’t buy.

Rob Britton was at the sales and bought one of Robert Crawford’s lots, Zelemar Storm; who he is currently syndicating to potential new clients.

However plenty of industry leaders left without buying despite intending to do so and this indicates a significant problem. If it isn’t broken you don’t fix it, but these sales need some changing. The concept is fantastic, but it’s time to make some adjustments.

2014 Group One Melbourne Cup Is Dyna Villa’s

Dyna Villa (8) has taken out the Group One Melbourne Cup in style, carving across from box eight to streak away for a two length victory in 29.36 at Sandown Park on Friday night.

The Collision and Roxio Bale (Droopy’s Vieri – Francesca Bale) dog came into the race unbeaten at the track. He had also never had his colours lowered wearing the pink stretch vest.

The money had been coming for Dyna Villa all day and at box-rise he was just shy of starting as the favourite. That honour went to Keybow (1) who punters had supported well due to the prime rails draw.

Dyna Villa forged out a fast first section of 5.04 to lead clearly into the first bend, just ahead of NSW bitch Chica Destacada (2). Rounding the turn, there was a little bit of interference between Above All (3) and Luca Neveelk (7), which left space for Keybow to hunt up along the rail into third.

Down the back, Dyna Villa got out to a six length lead and at this stage it was clear we were looking at this year’s Melbourne Cup winner. Chica Destacada tried her heart out, maintaining second position and pocketing connections $120,000 while Keybow filled the last of the minors.

Dyna Villa, trained by Jenny Hunt, has now won his first Group race. Prior to the Melbourne Cup, he had made the final of the Group 2 Geelong Cup. The generous prize-money of $420,000 takes his earnings over $460,000. He has just turned two years of age and the big win takes his career record to 15 wins from 23 starts. He looks to be the next star for the famous Wheeler family and little wonder given he is closely related to the recently retired Xylia Allen.

Full Results

1st: Dyna Villa (8) – Jenny Hunt
2nd: Chica Destacada (2) – Doreen Drynan
3rd: Keybow (1) – Darren McDonald
4th: Above All (3) – Robert Britton
5th: Cosmic Wise (5) – Jeffrey Britton
6th: Awesome Project (4) – Darren McDonald
7th: Star Recall (6) – Jeffrey Britton
8th: Luca Neveelk (7) – Gerald Kleeven

Time: 29.36
1st Split: 5.04 (8)
2nd Split: 18.62
Margins: 2 x 2
Scratchings: Cawbourne Whip (9), My Bro Fabio (10)

Sweet It Is Takes Out 2014 Bold Trease

She has done it again.

The bitch that trainer Darren McDonald described post race as a “Bold Trease re-incarnated” unleashed her trademark run home to clinch the 2014 Group One Bold Trease at Sandown at Sandown Park on Friday night.

A clear run in transit is always the key for the daughter of Mogambo and Off Springer (Flying Penske – Skullring) and, while she was slightly hampered leaving the home straight the first time, she could not of asked for a much better trip.

Ever the consummate professional, Sweet It Is took full advantage of the uninhibited run home to give the early leaders a cold and storm away to salute by a cool 5 1/2 lengths in a rapid 41.56.

After leaving the boxes reasonably well, Sweet It Is settled in seventh place as Zipping Maggie (2) took the ascendency, leading from Space Star (4).

Halfway down the back straight, Space Star took over and looked a big hope. Sweet It is began her move as the field passed the 715 metre boxes and made ground in a hurry.

Swinging for home, that familiar lightning turn of foot was as evident as ever as the 28kg black bitch hooked to the outside and put paid to her rivals in the twinkling of an eye en route to her fourth Group One victory.

Space Star hung on for second placing with rank outsider Reap The Benefit (5) working home for third placing.

Of the beaten brigade, excuses could not really be made for any of the runners with the winner simply too good and interference reasonably minimal.

The win was Sweet It Is’ 15th from 47 career outings and sees her career earnings reach a whopping $584,065.

2014 Group One Bold Trease – Full Results

1st – Sweet It Is (3) – Darren McDonald

2nd – Space Star (4) – Robert Britton

3rd – Reap The Benefit (5) – Michael Chilcott

4th – Zipping Maggie (2) – Peter Dapiran

5th – Beks (1) – Patrick Bouchier

6th – Blinker’s On (8) – Brooke Ennis

7th – Mystic Twist (6) – Mark Cauchi

8th – Coulta Rock (7) – David Curtain

Time: 41.56

1st Split: 6.17 (2)

2nd Split: 15.88 (2)

3rd Split: 30.62 (4)

Margins: 5 1/2 x 3 1/4

Scratchings: Dyna Kayla (9), Manila Express (10)

Will It Be Lucky Number Seven For Awesome Project?

Tonight is the night that we have all been waiting for. Tonight one star sprinter will be crowned the 2014 Melbourne Cup champion and one set of connections will walk away $420,000 richer.

Eight superb canines are ready to do battle. For most it will be a nerve-wracking experience, for Awesome Project it will just be like any other race.

The Darren McDonald- trained chaser knows a thing or two about racing at the elite level.

Tonight will be his seventh appearance at Group level where he will be chasing his third victory. 

The veteran of 55 starts has already tasted success in the Group Two Gosford Cup and the Group Two Harrison- Dawson with that all important Group One honour so far alluding him.

His closest finish at the highest level was last month where he finished a gallant third in the Group One Topgun at The Meadows.

His owner and former trainer Brad Canty knows just how special the son of Collision and Honour Phase is. Rarely putting in a bad performance, he goes into the Melbourne Cup as a winner of 28 races with 15 minor placings.

“He is very consistent and he has been consistent all the way through his career since I sent him down to Darren after the Gosford Cup. He has probably only had three weeks off this whole time and if you go right through his form and he has just about made all the big group finals”, Canty said.

“I don’t think I will ever own a better dog than him, not a more consistent one anyway. He is very reliable.”

Awesome Project was an all the way winner of his heat last week clocking a slick 29.39. While he loves the track at Sandown, where he is yet to miss a place from 13 starts, it will be a tough ask to claim the final jumping from box four.

“The draw is not good for him with the six, seven and eight going to be crashing across from out wide with pace.

“He has speared the lids and come out running a couple of times like when he won the Harrison- Dawson and in a heat of the Brisbane Cup he came up two in front, but I think whatever dog leads that race will probably win.

“They are all basically leaders in the race, he is probably the strongest dog in the race, but they are going to be running 29.3 so whatever dog goes to the front will be hard to run down.”



Canty, who is based in New South Wales, has made the trip to Melbourne to cheer on his charge.

While it is going to be a tough race, Awesome Project should never be discounted. 



“Luck is going to play a big part in it, you couldn’t have hand picked a better eight dogs for the race but if he can come out and hold his position to the first turn he will be a big chance.”


And for a rising four year old, a win in the sport’s most coveted feature could lock in a future career at stud.

“It’s the richest greyhound race in the world. I would love to win it for the dogs sake, if he wins this race his stud career is locked in, so it would mean a lot for me for the dog to win it.”

2014 Group One Bold Trease Final Preview

While the Melbourne Cup takes centres stage at Sandown Park tonight, greyhound fans will be treated to a double dose of Group One racing.

Just two races earlier, $100,000 is up for grabs for stayers in the 2014 Bold Trease.

Darren McDonald will rug up the favourite Sweet It Is from box three. Despite having won almost every important race on the calendar, the Bold Trease has been one that has so far eluded the astute Devon Meadows mentor.

Rob Britton will look to make it back-to-back wins in the race after he won the 2013 final with Cheetah Zorro. Britton is the only trainer in the race who has won the event in the past.

The Bold Trease is Race Six on the card and is scheduled to jump at 8:38pm.

Here is a look at each dog in detail with comments from connections;

Box 1
Race Odds
$12.00
Heat Replay
 

Beks

Trainer
Patrick Bouchier
Owner
Patricia Bouchier
Prizemoney
$39,360
Last 10 Starts
3152325241
32 Months   Black   Dog   by   Bekim Bale - Flaming Doll
Start Slow Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,270 Rating 91
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
31 6 6 7
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
19% 61%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 1 2 2
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 1 1 2
ARG Comments: Made the most of his opportunities to flash home and score in 42.04 last week. That was his first win at the track in six attempts. He will need to begin well to be an chance of competing here.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.04 42.04 6.34 6.37
Box 2
Race Odds
$10.00
Heat Replay
 
Zipping Maggie
Trainer
Peter Dapiran
Owner
M & F Hallinan
Prizemoney
$90,025
Last 10 Starts
1111432642
30 Months   Dark Brindle   Bitch   by   Turanza Bale - Natalie Rass
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $3,215 Rating 90
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
28 12 5 3
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
43% 71%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 2 1 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 1 1 0
Peter Dapiran (Trainer): “The draw looks to have helped her, it is what you want to be drawn close to the fence with both Sweet It Is and Beks usually reasonably slow away. She should get a good look at the lure. She got a little bit tangled up last week and, by the time she balanced up the run on dogs had a little bit too much momentum and just got her on the line.”


Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last

41.85

42.08 6.13 6.19
Box 3
Race Odds
$2.10
Heat Replay
 
Sweet It Is
Trainer
Andrea Dailly
Owner
Paul Wheeler
Prizemoney
$484,065
Last 10 Starts
1232221112
36 Months   Black   Bitch   by   Mogambo - Off Springer
Start Risky Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $10,523 Rating 99
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
64 18 10 6
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
30% 63%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
11 5 4 0
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 2 2 0
Braden Finn (Owner): “I spoke to Darren yesterday and he said the bitch is as good as ever and jumping out of her skin he’s just hoping for a clear run! It looks a very good race with the 2 dogs on the rise Space Star and Blinker’s On improving all the time should be a good final all dogs worthy of their spot in the race. I think the six should come out and lead and give the pink a nice cart over which will make him hard to beat.”

Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.46 41.94 6.23 6.23
Box 4
Race Odds
$4.40
Heat Replay
 
Space Star
Trainer
Robert Britton
Owner
Camilla Limon
Prizemoney
$36,800
Last 10 Starts
1111315321

29 Months

  Black   Dog   by  

Bekim Bale

- Tonto Tears
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,840 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
20 12 2 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
60% 85%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 02 0
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 4 0 0
Robert Britton (Trainer): “It was exciting to have a dog with so much ability come into the kennel, you often get pups who are a little more average so it was great to have him come in. We knew he had a big motor and it was good to see him get off the track last week where he wants to be, that allowed him to show what he can do. It was a good field in his heat but when you are running 41.6 then you wouldn’t be too disappointed if you got beat. To be honest I am not too happy with this week’s draw with the pace on his outside. I am hoping he can get a clear run early but you just wonder how it will happen. It could be a big night for us, but I have learnt over many years to not get too excited, they don’t give these sort of races away, that’s for sure.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.65 41.65 6.20 6.20
Box 5
Race Odds
$101.00
Heat Replay
 
Reap The Benefit
Trainer
MIchael Chilcott
Owner
Geoffrey Collins
Prizemoney
$19,450
Last 10 Starts
4231212252
32 Months   Black   Dog   by   Bekim Bale - Zarbo
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish

Good

Prizemoney Rating $648 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
30 5 7 7
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
17% 63%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 1 0
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 1 0 1
Michael Chilcott (Trainer): “He has drawn the worst box and is between the two fastest dogs in the race but you can not do much about that. He has enough pace to be up there but got shuffled back from second to second last in the heat, if he is sitting midfield heading for home, you never know.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
NBT 42.81 6.35 6.35
Box 6
Race Odds
$34.00
Heat Replay
 
Mystic Twist
Trainer
Mark Cauchi
Owner
Kim Hollway
Prizemoney
$61,615
Last 10 Starts
1511737371
37 Months   Brindle   Bitch   by   Velocette - Valley Twist
Start Good Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $1,760 Rating 81
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
35 12 5 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
34% 57%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 0 0
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 0 0
ARG Comment: Front running bitch who looks the likely leader in the race. Led all the way in her heat, winning in 42.07. That was her first win over the trip in three attempts. She will have to improve on that time to take this race out.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.07 42.07 6.06 6.06
Box 7
Race Odds
$23.00
Heat Replay
 
Coulta Rock
Trainer
David Curtain
Owner
David Curtain
Prizemoney
$40,235
Last 10 Starts
431F341251
27 Months   Black   Dog   by   Velocette - Coulta Sally
Start Good Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $1,150 Rating 86
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
35 10 5 8
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
29% 66%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 0 1 0

David Curtain (Trainer): “He has a lot of ability and is maturing all the time. I think nearly every dog copped some interference in his heat and he did well coming back but that is why the time isn’t real flash. There is no stress and no expectation, whatever he does is a bonus.”

Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.75 42.75 6.30 6.30
Box 8
Race Odds
$3.40
Heat Replay
 
Blinkers On
Trainer
Brooke Ennis
Owner
Troy Little
Prizemoney
$50,590
Last 10 Starts
7123211112
30 Months   Blue   Dog   by   Cosmic Rumble - Good Oil
Start Good Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,300 Rating 93
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
22 9 5 1
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41% 68%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 2 2 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 1 0
Jamie Ennis (Kennel Representative): “If you could draw the field the way you wanted to, this would have to be close to it. He should get a great cart over and be right in the race. He trialled over 600 before last week and was simply outstanding, he was very unlucky last week and probably should have won easily. But you have those nights and it was one where nothing went our way. He should get a lot more luck this week given the way the field is drawn. You can never be too confident with Sweet It Is in the race, she can do freakish things and run down anyone when things go her way.”


Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
41.71 42.18 6.28 6.28
1st Res
Race Odds
$11.00
Heart Replay
 
Dyna Kayla
Trainer
Andrea Dailly
Owner
Brendan Wheeler
Prizemoney
$136,285
Last 10 Starts
6411142173
28 Months   Blue   Bitch   by   Surf Lorian - Amity Bale
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $4,867 Rating 94
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
28 14 4 2
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50% 71%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 0 1
Box Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comments: Quality race bitch who found trouble when crossing to lead last week. She has plenty of Group racing experience and would be far from the worst if she gained a start.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
42.11

42.16

6.13 6.19
2nd Res
Race Odds
$101.00
Heat Replay
 
Manila Express
Trainer
Captain Abbott
Owner
Captain Abbott
Prizemoney
$23,645
Last 10 Starts
1234121413
32 Months   Black   Bitch   by   Bekim Bale - Flossy
Start Slow Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $430 Rating 80
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
55 15 6 8
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
27% 53%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 0 0 1
Box Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
- - - -
ARG Comments: A run on type who does most of her racing in easier classes. She will be a fair way back in this type of field and looks tested.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
NBT 42.32 6.27 6.27

The early pace in the race looks likely to come from Mystic Twist (6) and Zipping Maggie (2).

This should give Blinker’s On (8) a beautiful cart across into the action. Should he be afforded a clear run, he will take some running down.

Champion bitch Sweet It Is (3) will be worse than midfield early and is sure to be running home like a hungry school kid. If she gets a clear run in transit, she will add a fourth Group One title to her impressive curriculum vitae.

Space Star (4) set the time standard in the heats and had tons of ability. He will need to avoid dogs cutting across him early if he expects to use the track as usual.

2014 Group One Melbourne Cup Final Preview

The eagerly anticipated Group One Melbourne Cup is scheduled to jump at 9:24pm (VIC time) tonight at Sandown Park.

A whopping prize-money pool of $600,000 is available for place-getters. The winner receives $420,000, the runner up will receive $120,000 and third grabs hold of $60,000 – not too shabby for a 29 second run.

The Melbourne Cup was first conducted at Sandown Park in 1956. The race has come a long way since. In this year’s edition a number of story lines thread their way into the race.

If Keybow wins, he will break the Australian prize-money record and will make his trainer, Darren McDonald the first trainer to win four Melbourne Cups. If Above All wins he will become just the second greyhound from New Zealand to take out the great event. That feat was last achieved 40 years ago.

Recent winners of the Melbourne Cup include Black Magic Opal, Got A Moment, Dyna Tron, El Grand Senor, Lord Ducal, Surgeon, Betty’s Angel and Closing Argument.

We will soon know who the 2014 winner is. Here is a look at the form of each of the finalists;

Box 1
Race Odds
$3.10
Heat Replay
 
Keybow
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Kelvin Lean
Prizemoney
$343,635
Last 10 Starts
2414153611
35 Months   Black   Dog   by   Take The Kitty - Key Exit
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $9,818 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
35 16 7 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
46% 74%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
8 3 1 2
       
Box 1 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 1 0
Kelvin Lean (Owner): “It is a good draw, it’s unbelievable. I think in these big races you have got to be on the inside and there is so much speed in this race that the inside is definitely the place to be.”

Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.36 29.36 5.05 5.11
Box 2
Race Odds
$4.80
Heat Replay
 
Chica Destacada
Trainer
Doreen Drynan
Owner
Dee and Pee syndicate
Prizemoney
$145,655
Last 10 Starts
6311156821
29 Months   Black   Bitch   by   Cosmic Rumble - Eluthra
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $4,699 Rating 91
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
31 12 5 3
       
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
39% 65%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 1 0
       
Box 2 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 1 1 0
Doreen Drynan (Trainer): “It is the same box that she won the National Sprint from but she seems to go better when she is drawn out on the track a little bit. She seems to be able to pace up a lot quicker because she is inclined to step a bit to the right when she comes out of the boxes.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.22 29.22 5.02 5.02
Box 3
Race Odds
$5.50
Heat Replay
 
Above All
Trainer
Robert Britton
Owner
Alison Lee
Prizemoney
$29,510
Last 10 Starts
1F14212111
27 Months   Black   Dog   by   Magic Sprite - Kara Janx
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,951 Rating 94
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
10 6 2 0
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
60% 80%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
6 3 2 0
Box 3 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Robert Britton (Trainer): “He doesn’t have the early pace that others have in this field. What he has shown me is that he is fearless in taking gaps, so hopefully he can get a soft early run into the first turn and take any gap that may be presented to him.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.33 29.38 5.11 5.11
Box 4
Race Odds
$8.50
Heat Replay
 
Awesome Project
Trainer
Darren McDonald
Owner
Bradley Canty
Prizemoney
$297,690
Last 10 Starts
1711163131

43 Months

  Black   Dog   by   Collision - Honour Phase
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $5,412 Rating 94
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
55 28 7 8
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
51% 78%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
13 8 3 2
Box 4 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
9 5 0 0
Bradley Canty (Owner): The draw is not good for him with the six, seven and eight all going to be crashing across from out wide with pace. He has speared the lids and come out running a couple of times like when he won the Harrison- Dawson and in a heat of the Brisbane Cup he came up two in front, but I think whatever dog leads that race will probably win.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.35 29.39 5.00 5.12
Box 5
Race Odds
$34.00
Heat Replay
 
Cosmic Wise
Trainer
Jeff Britton
Owner
Brona Lane Racing syndicate
Prizemoney
$110,645
Last 10 Starts
4131115311
38 Months   Black   Bitch   by   Cosmic Chief - Wise Penny
Start Good Running Rail Finish

Strong

Prizemoney Rating $1,875 Rating 91
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
N/A N/A N/A N/A
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
34% 64%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
19 6 2 1
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 2 0 0

Justin Wright (Owner): “Box one helped her last week and I would imagine the track was a bit quicker than it normally is but we were still chuffed with how she went. It will be very different this week and I don’t think she has the pace to beat the other seven to the first corner. There is going to be a lot of early speed and she is a mad railer, she will look for the rails straight out of the boxes. I reckon her only hope is if she misses it a little bit and then goes straight to rail and if there is a little bit of trouble on the corner that she can rail up underneath. It is going to be tough but you have got to be in it to win it. She will give 100% and whatever happens, happens.”

Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.40 29.40 5.07 5.07
Box 6
Race Odds
$9.00
Heat Replay
 
Star Recall
Trainer
Jeffrey Britton
Owner
Kevin Dover
Prizemoney
$158,305
Last 10 Starts
1221111881
30 Months   Black   Bitch   by   High Earner - No Recall
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $4,166 Rating 95
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
38 21 7 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
55% 84%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
2 1 0 0
Box 6 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 4 2 1
Kevin Dover (Owner): “Hopefully she can ping the lids and get up with them near the lead going into the first turn. She is not a mad railer, she holds her line to the first turn, so that should help her too.”
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.34 29.34 5.05 5.05
Box 7
Race Odds
$16.00
Heat Replay
 
Luca Neveelk
Trainer
Gerald Kleeven
Owner
Paul Kleeven
Prizemoney
$128,865
Last 10 Starts
1113111131
29 Months   Blue   Dog   by   Talk’s Cheap - It’s A Neveelk
Start Excellent Running Rail Finish Good
Prizemoney Rating $4,772 Rating 97
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
27 22 0 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
81% 93%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
1 1 0 0
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
4 3 0 0

Gerald Kleeven (Trainer): “I reckon he can get across and I like him out there. It depends on what the pink (Dyna Villa) does but he (Luca Neveelk) is a pretty big dog so the pink shouldn’t push him out of the way. He just needs clear room in the first one or two strides and then he has got that massive early pace. Whatever gets out in front will win, there is no two ways about it, because you have got seven other dogs with equal ability behind you and they usually all look to go to the rails and they will be in a bunch. If you are lucky enough to get to the front I’d imagine you would be laughing.”

Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.42 29.42 5.00 5.00
Box 8
Race Odds
$6.50
Heat Replay
 
Dyna Villa
Trainer
Jenny Hunt
Owner
Brendan Wheeler
Prizemoney
$46,635
Last 10 Starts
4333181311
25 Months   Black   Dog   by   Collision - Roxio Bale
Start Good Running Middle Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,220 Rating 92
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
21 13 2 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
62% 86%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 7 0 0
Box 8 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 3 0 0
ARG Comment: Dyna Villa is unbeaten at the track and unbeaten from the box. He showed tremendous pace last week from box six to defeat My Bro Fabio by 1 1/4 lengths. He recorded his best time in the process. A repeat of the pace from last week will see him contesting the lead in the early stages. He has to be considered a big chance based on his form.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.21 29.21 5.00 5.00
1st Res
Race Odds
$26.00
Heart Replay
 
Cawbourne Whip
Trainer
Anthony Azzopardi
Owner
Jodie Lord
Prizemoney
$83,305
Last 10 Starts
1124634432
34 Months   Black & White   Bitch   by   Dyna Lachlan - American Spot
Start Moderate Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $2,136 Rating 88
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
39 16 5 4
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
41% 64%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
3 0 1 2
Box 7 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
5 0 1 1
ARG Comment: Does not have the pace to match some of the speedsters in the final and will be well and truly at double figure odds if she gains a start.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
NBT 29.29

5.10

5.10
2nd Res
Race Odds
$4.60
Heat Replay
 
My Bro Fabio
Trainer
Brooke Ennis
Owner
Michelle Jones
Prizemoney
$202,075
Last 10 Starts
2111151112
31 Months   Black   Dog   by   Turanza Bale - Flamenco
Start Risky Running Rail Finish Strong
Prizemoney Rating $4,811 Rating 100
Career Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
42 21 9 3
Strike Rates
Win % Place %
50% 79%
Track & Dist.
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
13 5 2 3
Box 5 Record
Starts 1st 2nd 3rd
7 2 3 0
ARG Comment: Will rocket right into contention if he gets a start. Although he is tardy at box-rise at times, he is a freakishly fast dog that is capable of anything.
Best Sandown Park Times
Best Last Sect. Best Sect. Last
29.09 29.29 5.15 5.24

Keybow (1) is currently the favourite from the prized rails alley. He just needs an ounce of luck early to stamp his authority on the race but there will be plenty of others in the field looking to challenge him.

Dyna Villa (8) is boxed out wide and possesses the best record of any dog in the race as he is unbeaten at the track and unbeaten from the draw. He is the fastest qualifier going into the final after stopping the clock at 29.21 in last week’s heats. His sections across the board were great and he will prove hard to beat if he repeats last week’s efforts.

Luca Neveelk (7) will be challenging for the lead early. He needs to be in front at the first turn to be any chance.

Awesome Project (4) has a mile of ability and seems to be flying under the radar a little due to the focus on his kennel mate. He came out last week to lead all the way and he is more than capable of doing that from box four.

Chica Destacada (2) was impressive last week and she is drawn to go well again. Her trainer has indicated that she may step right out of the boxes but she has the form from the box, winning the National Sprint earlier this year from the same draw.

The Kiwi’s will all be cheering for Above All (3). While he will need some luck in the early stages, he has made the final and certainly has a big future ahead of him as he has come into the race with just 10 starts under his belt.

Cosmic Wise (5) and Star Recall (6) both have Western Australian connections and will be aiming to give the West something to cheer for. The draws are not great for either chaser but, as with all the other chasers in this final, they are in with a chance.

It should be a great race so be sure to tune in or get trackside.

What Omens Will The 2014 Melbourne Cup Winner Follow?

Approximately 29 seconds will stand between eight of the country’s best greyhounds and immortality when the lids fly open in the Group One Melbourne Cup tomorrow night at Sandown.

Only the best have won the Melbourne Cup, the races’ honour roll contains more stars than you will see littered through the night sky, and in 2014 another set of powerful paws will carve their name alongside the greats.

Keybow is currently the $3.30 favourite with Sportingbet to take out the race that paw-ses a nation. The son of Take The Kitty and Key Exit will jump from box one, a box he has only started from twice throughout his 35 start career, resulting in one win and one second.

Keybow’s sire finished fifth in the Melbourne Cup in 2009 and, incidentally, both father and son will start from the same draw. Box one has not won the Melbourne Cup since Closing Argument stormed to victory in 2005 however, prior to that year, it had saluted in the previous three runnings.

One of those was in 2004 when the race was taken out by Hallucinate for Darren McDonald, who will put the polish on Keybow in Friday’s $420,000 to the winner feature. McDonald, who also trains Awesome Project in the final, will become the first conditioner to have trained four winners of the Melbourne Cup should either of his charges salute.

Awesome Project is currently rated a $9 shot with Sportingbet and has a tough task ahead of him from box four. The striking black chaser has been ultra consistent throughout his career and relishes the track at Sandown where he is yet to be unplaced from 13 appearances. He also boasts five wins from his draw and if, he can salute, he will join former greats such as Betty’s Angel and Go Wild Teddy to have won the Cup wearing blue in recent years.

Interestingly, the last two Melbourne Cups have been won in a time of 29.37 by greyhounds starting from box two. If this trend continues, your winner will be the Doreen Drynan- trained Chica Destacada which is $4.80 with Sportingbet to taste success. Boasting blistering early sectionals and a 29.22 PB at the track, this bitch means business.

Kiwi chaser Above All is right in contention, rated a $5.50 pick with Sportingbet. Trained by Rob Britton, the classy black greyhound is by Magic Sprite, the same sire as last year’s winner Black Magic Opal. A winner of his last three in a row, he is one from one wearing the white where he will jump from in the final, but box three has not won a Melbourne Cup in 19 years since City Blitz triumphed in 1995.



Rob’s brother Jeff will have two starters in the Cup but they are both drawn awfully in the five and six. Cosmic Wise (5) and Star Recall (6), which are both owned in WA, will both need luck and are rated $20 and $9 with Sportingbet to win the race respectively.

It takes a brilliant dog to win from either box. The last winner of the Melbourne Cup from box five was Classic Capri in 2001, while the most recent to triumph from the six was Shanlyn Prince in 2007.

Luca Neveelk, currently a $16 chance with Sportingbet, should be the early leader and will be hoping for scrimmage on the first turn so he can dart clear down the back. His sire, Talk’s Cheap, is a half brother to Betty’s Angel which took out the Cup in 2006. He also comes into the race as the winner of the 2014 Geelong Cup with last year’s winner, Black Magic Opal, seizing the same double that Luca Neveelk will be aiming to complete tomorrow night.

Last, but certainly not least, is Dyna Villa which is rated a $6 chance with Sportingbet. He is by Collision, who has sired two of the last three winners of the Melbourne Cup, and he will be aiming to score success from box eight where he is unbeaten. If he is to win, he will be the first to triumph from the pink since Surgeon in 2008. If he does, lets hope he has better manners in the home straight.

Australian Racing Greyhound will have a full preview of the Melbourne Cup tomorrow morning. 


Doreen Hoping For An Outstanding Night

Chica Destacada, whose name means ‘Outstanding Girl’ in Spanish, gave veteran trainer Doreen Drynan her first taste of glory at Group One level when she brilliantly claimed the National Sprint Championship at Cannington in August.

This Friday Chica Destacada will be aiming to add to that triumph when she exits box two, the same box which she used to score success in the National Sprint Championship, in the Group One Melbourne Cup at Sandown Park.

The NSW trained speedster was a phenomenal winner of her heat last Thursday. Exploding from box six, the bonny black bitch was too strong for the Anthony Azzopardi trained Cawbourne Whip, winning by just over one length in an airborne 29.22.

Drynan said she was expecting her kennel star to go well in the race, having run a great second in a Melbourne Cup Prelude the week prior, but was shocked to see her perform so dominantly.

“She didn’t trial too bad and then it was a good run when she raced there the week before, but it was a bit of a surprise that she got up for us on Thursday night. It was a very pleasant surprise though, I can tell you that!”, Doreen laughed.

Chica Destacada has been a wonderful performer for Drynan winning 12 of her 31 career starts, including seven triumphs at Wentworth Park, while she also made the final of the Group One Topgun at The Meadows last month.

Since finishing at the tail of the field in that event, Doreen has entrusted leading Victorian trainer Darren McDonald with looking after her pride and joy.

“I left her down there with Darren after the Topgun so she could have a trial at Sandown and a look at the track”, Doreen explained.

“He has done a top job with her. The advantage of sending her to Darren as well is that we more or less do the same thing in regards to the working of the greyhounds and feeding them, so there wasn’t a great deal of change for her as far as that is concerned.”

Doreen also expressed concerns that travelling around the country was starting to take its toll on Chica Destacada, providing another reason to leave her in the care of McDonald for the past few weeks.

“She has done a bit of traveling lately and I think that effects them.

“The Melbourne Cup is the biggest race in the entire greyhound industry so you have got to give her every chance you can to perform well.”

However, Doreen, who bred the daughter of Cosmic Rumble and Eluthra with her daughter Kerry, feels that she is not as well boxed in the two as some may think.

“It is the same box that she won the National Sprint from but she seems to go better when she is drawn out on the track a little bit.

“She seems to be able to pace up a lot quicker because she is inclined to step a bit to the right when she comes out of the boxes.”

As for who she rates as the biggest danger, Doreen concedes that it may be one of two that Darren McDonald has in the race himself.

“I think Keybow (Box 1) is going to be the hardest to beat because all the speed is drawn on the outside. With that being said it is hard to say and a lot of it is having luck into the run to the first turn.”

Doreen waited 48 years for her first Group One win but she may very well get her second within the space of three months if Chica Destacada puts her best paws forward on Friday.

At this stage, the thought of winning the sport’s highest honour still feels like a surreal concept for Drynan, who is already thankful for the excitement ‘Chica’ has given her.

“She has given us a lot of thrills and the biggest thrill is the fact that we bred her too, it makes it even more special.

“If I happened to win the Melbourne Cup I just hope I don’t have a heart attack! It would be the greatest thrill ever, I have been in greyhounds for that long.

“It was an absolutely great thrill when she won the National Sprint final at Cannington but to win the Melbourne Cup as well would just be awesome, I can’t even imagine what it would be like.”

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