THE Group 1 Temlee will be run and won at The Meadows on Saturday night and promises to be an exciting and enticing affair, despite the current furore that surrounds greyhound racing.
Zipping Willow has been withdrawn, giving the first reserve Marcus Joe an opportunity to compete for the $100,000 winner’s cheque.
My Bro Fabio is currently the $2.90 favourite with Sportingbet and is on a hot-streak, having claimed up his third straight win earlier this month in the Group 1 Perth Cup.
The Brooke Ennis-trained chaser has a blistering personal best time of 29.69 at The Meadows and will give punters plenty of confidence from box eight, with an impeccable record of four wins from five attempts in the wide alley.
Robert Britton puts the polish on Above All, currently $3.20 with Sportingbet, which has only been beaten once at The Meadows in four starts. The son of Magic Sprite and Kara Janx is already a dual Group 1 winner and has a sizzling personal best time of 29.76 over the track and distance.
The is plenty of value to be found in the race, with Melbourne Cup hero Dyna Villa a massive $7.00 at time of publishing. A win in the race would take his prize money earnings to $736,330 – less than $10,000 away from breaking Xylia Allen’s all time record.
The race is scheduled to jump at 9.52pm (Victorian time).
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Has a love affair with this track and if he gained a start he wouldn’t be without a hope, especially if he comes up with the red draw. He has solid early speed and he can go with any of these mid race, will be big odds but is not without a serious chance if he gains a start.”
Kerry Drynan (Kennel Representative): “Happy with the box draw. She’s trialling well, but will have to step away cleanly to be competitive. Definitely not confident.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “If this race was run in November/December she would have been a short priced favourite and just about a good thing, however at present she is racing well below her best and she is lacking confidence. She can ping the lids and when she finds the lure she is a different chaser, however I’m a little worried that she is going to bump with the red soon after box rise and I dont think she can recover after that.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Absolute freak and he is the current track record holder here. If you knew that he was going to get a clear run you would absolutely unleash on him because he is the fastest chaser in the race but his box manners aren’t reliable and he will be looking to push wide at the first bend. There is a fair bit of speed draw on his outside tonight so he isn’t going to get things his own way and he is likely to get squeezed out early. He is extremely strong in the run home so even if he does find bother early he should be able to run home into a place.”
Brad Canty (Owner): “I think he will go well, but he needs to come out running to be a chance in this race.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Has been a great chaser for quite a while now and if he takes his place he is a genuine winning hope. Last time out he returned to form with a dazzling 29.39 Sandown Park win and he has the speed to get across and find the rail early. He tends to do his best racing at Sandown Park but he has raced well here in the past and if he can find the early lead he will prove very hard to reel in.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja:Absolute star and he loves racing here, his last couple of starts have been a tad disappointing but he is clearly better than that and he tends to race better from wide draws. With a slow beginner on his outside, he should get plenty of room to muster speed early and that should allow him to swoop into the early lead. He has proven in his career that he is a very fast chaser when he can dictate the terms out in front and he is always very hard to get past. I know he has been a tad disappointing of late but he should be ready to get back to his best and he might be over the odds tonight.”
Robert Britton (Trainer): “It’s a strong field. He’s feeling good so you gotta be in it with a chance.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Freak talent who has had a couple of problems in recent weeks, if he is 100% fit then he is definitely a major player. Prior to having a short spell, he did capture the Group 1 Silver Chief final here and his effort to win that final was enormous. It is going to take another big effort tonight but if he is afforded a clear run early he should get every chance to put himself into contention. He obviously has to be respected but I think he will be under the odds tonight.”
Tony Brett (Trainer): “He’s not badly boxed. If he can time the jump better than he did in his trial he will hopefully be up with the leaders heading into the first turn. He is feeling enormous and ready to run a great race.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Classy Queenslander and he really caught the eye in his trial here last week. In that effort he posted a sizzling 29.78 and I think he is capable of finding at least two lengths on that run. He only went through the first marker in 5.21, so clearly he missed the kick. With a clean getaway tonight he should be able to hit the first marker in around 5.04 and that would see him vying for the lead and he will prove extremely hard to hold out whilst running around the 29.60 mark. He is sort of the forgotten one, about six months ago he was the next big thing in racing but unfortunately he has been sparingly raced of late due to injury, I think tonight is the night he announces his arrival to the big stage.”
Jamie Ennis (Kennel Representative): “He’s come back from Perth in really good halt and he’s trial at this track during the week was very good. I’m hoping Dyna Villa cuts hard to the fence, which he normally does and I’m sure he’ll run well, just need to luck at the first corner.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Absolute beast and he turned in a monster effort to win the Perth Cup last time out. Once again he is going to have his work cut out because he is going to be giving a gun lineup a big head start, however if he can settle around mid field and avoid early bother, he should be able to put himself into contention. There is no doubting he has the talent to beat any one of these chasers but I’m a little concerned that he will be posted wide for most of the journey, I would be anchoring him for second and third in your exotics.”
SPACE Star looks set to record his first Group 1 victory next Saturday night after his tremendous display in a heat of the Galaxy at Cannington at the weekend.
Jumping well from box one, the black son of Bekim Bale and Tonto Tears was never headed and, despite racing wide for most of the trip, scored by six-and-a-half lengths in a hot 41.57.
Now trained in Victoria by Robert Britton, the powerhouse chaser is yet to miss a place since joining his new kennel in November, winning six of eight including a tenacious triumph in the Group 2 Summer Distance Plate at Wentworth Park.
Local greyhound Expect A Guess (box two) ran second for Christine Robartson ahead of Brooke Ennis’s Blinker’s On (box four) and Takahasi (box seven).
Ennis will have two runners in the $80,000-to-the-winner feature, also putting the polish on Lady Toy, which was dominant in the second heat. A renowned slow beginner, Lady Toy settled midfield early from box six, railing through into third position past the post on the first occasion.
The unfashionably-bred daughter of Our Toyman and Railway Shiraz slowly started taking ground off the leaders My Mate Cobber (box one) and Starc (box two) down the back before dashing underneath the former in the shadows of the post, winning by half a length in 41.84.
My Mate Cobber and Starc held on to fill the placings with Ash Flash also making the final for Paul Stuart. Lady Toy has now won two from two since joining Ennis’s kennel with her other success coming in the listed Maidment Memorial at Sandown over 595 metres in January.
The box draw for the Group 1 Galaxy is as follows:
Box 1 – Lady Toy Box 2 – Blinker’s On Box 3 – Expect A Guess Box 4 – My Mate Cobber Box 5 – Takahashi Box 6 – Starc Box 7 – Space Star Box 8 – Ash Flash
WHILE most of tonight’s attention will centre on Wentworth Park tonight with the semi-finals of the Group 1 National Derby and Futurity, there is still an excellent 12-race card being run at The Meadows with some talented types engaged. Lets get into our selections for the card:
Best Bet: Race 2: Targaryen
Best Value: Race 6: Love Affair
Quaddie: Leg 1: 6,7,8 – Leg 2: 1,4,8 – Leg 3: 1,3,7 – Leg 4: 3,5,6,7,8 $135 for 100%
Race No. 1Topcat Video (handicap)7:15 PM (VIC time)
Handicap event over 725 metres at The meadows Of $10,285 Prizemoney. 1st: $7,200 2nd: $2,060 3rd: $1,025.
1SHALL SHE ROCK -7m 2241142.38(7)D Crawford (Pearcedale)
4CAMBRIDGE PRINCE -10m 54238NBTA Langton (Anakie)
6TEARS SIAM -10m (NSW)74145NBTR Britton (Lara)
7SLIPAWAY MAVIS -10m 1552243.08(6)A King (Sulky)
8MAY IT BE -10m 58262FSTDA Langton (Anakie)
Tears Siam is a full sister to the gun stayer Space Star and she isn’t too far off him talent wise. She is well placed out wide and she should get every chance to lead from the front mark. Three starts back she posted a sizzling 41.91 Sandown Park win and if she can reproduce that type of effort she would put a space in this lot.
Shall She Rock will give them a bit of a head start but she has a great record here and she should be able to drive through into a prominent position as they go past the post the first time.
Cambridge Prince has enough speed to settle in the top two early and if he does lead them up he should give them something to catch, he can be unreliable but he should get every chance from the front marker.
Berry Blitz rounds out the chances, she recently posted a strong 42.69 victory here and with some luck early she should be able to make an impact.
Grade 7 event over 525 metres at The meadows Of $7,150 Prizemoney. 1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.
1TARGARYEN (NSW)12NBTR Britton (Lara)
2BALLY MO TOWN (NSW)34321NBTM Wallworth (Gisborne)
3WHY NOT LUCY 37375NBTW Gray (Wendouree)
4HAWK TANA 23313NBTB Harley (Axedale)
5HAKATA BALE (NSW)53734NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
6WHY NOT FRANKLIN 47344NBTW Gray (Wendouree)
7TANTRUM TOMMY 8522630.42(8)A Dailly (Anakie)
8CRAY CRAY 32134FSHR Britton (Lara)
9BIT OF ALRIGHT Res.75683NBTP Formosa (Lalor)
Targaryen has recently joined the powerful Robert Britton kennel and he comes here after scoring a brilliant 26.41 Bulli win on debut. On Wednesday he went around this track and trip and he was far from disgraced when finishing second. From the red tonight he should be able to push through and hold the early lead and I think if he finds the bunny early he will be running some serious time.
Bally Mo Town is armed with smart early speed and he broke through for a well deserved win at Shepparton in 25.68. He is likely to match motors with the red for most of the trip and he should hold on for the quinella spot.
Tantrum Tommy doesn’t win very often but he is very strong and he has been placed in seven of his 14 tries here, he might be a good anchor for third and fourth in your exotic bets.
Hakata Bale could be the value in the event, his recent form isn’t that great but he does possess early speed and if he finds the early lead he may prove hard to catch.
Grade 6 event over 525 metres at The meadows Of $7,150 Prizemoney. 1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.
1NEOLISIOUS 25152NBTR Crisafi (Pakenham)
2TIGER’S HERO 2711430.22(7)R Britton (Lara)
3FLASH ZOE 5736630.48(8)R Britton (Lara)
4DYNA BRAINIAC (NSW)15275NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
5SCHUMACHER 13413NBTJ Shaw (Anakie)
6GIRTHY 34662NBTB Jones (Pyalong)
7VELVET HAMMER (NSW)7171FSHS Fisher (Lara)
8GANGNAM STYLE 63272NBTC Capuano (Anakie)
Neolisious is drawn perfectly in the red and she is improving with every start. Two starts back she overcame a slow start to score at Bendigo in 24.19 and tonight I am expecting her to begin a lot better and lead at the first turn. She isn’t known for her strength but she is hitting the line a lot better of late and this class should suit.
Dyna Brainiac has the class edge and he has been placed in five of his seven starts here to date. The box draw hasn’t done him any favours but he does muster speed well and he should be able to follow the three across in the run to the first bend.
Schumacher has a heap of talent and if he gains a clear run from the squeeze box he should be able to run a big race, he will go around at big odds and he could be the value.
Tiger’s Hero round out the chances, he has won two of his past three here and he does possess a great turn of speed soon after box rise.
10STARZAR DIAMONDS Res.74T82NBTK King (Langwarrin)
Repayments is an exciting prospect who has won five of six to date and his latest victory was here in a blistering 29.87. His first sectional of 5.17 wasn’t overly impressive but he did bomb the start last time and from the red he should be able to begin a lot better. He is going to be quite short but it’s hard to tip against him so it may be worth anchoring him up front in your exotic bets.
Tiggerlong Fix is a highly talented speedster who has been sparingly raced to date. Last time out he showed dazzling mid race speed when posting a handy 30.22 and if he can begin well tonight he should give the favourite a minor scare.
Tiggerlong Ketut has enough speed to cross early and he should be able to improve on his smart 30.15 heat win, he got quite tired in the run home last week so he should be a lot better for that run.
Rashad Reason is well drawn nearer the inside and he should finish on strongly, he has been placed in seven of nine here and he shouldn’t be too far away again.
Beckenbauer is much better than his recent form reads and he should get every chance to regain some confidence from the favourable pink draw. Back in early December he posted two brilliant Sandown Park wins and since then he has continually found bother soon after the start, with a keen railer drawn underneath tonight he should get a nice cart across and he will prove very hard to hold out.
Crackerjack Rose is extremely consistent and she has led in her past three starts here, if she can step cleanly again she should be able to cross and find the bunny again. She isn’t overly strong but this is the weakest event she has contested for a while so if she leads she will give a great sight.
Mepunga Moss is much better than her recent form reads and she too will benefit from the drop in class, she has won four of 11 over this journey and she just needs a clear run early to regain some confidence.
Zell Bale rounds out the chances, I dont like his winning hopes from the middle pin but he can run home into the placings.
9GO JETTA GO Res.52425NBTJ Thompson (Pearcedale)
10LITES AND SIRENS Res.3221543.56(8)R Divirgilio (Devon Meadows)
Love Affair has the good draw and she could be great value in this event. She tends to do her best racing at this track and trip and from wide draws she tends to begin a lot better than normal. Last week she stormed home after finding early bother and she was far from disgraced, tonight she should settle in the first half of the field and as they round for home she should be about to assume control.
Deadly Boy made his staying debut and after being headed early and finding bother he managed to plug on well and hit the line better than expected, from the red he should be able to punch through and hold the early lead and I think he is a different chaser when on the bunny.
Serash Bale was desperately unlucky in her heat and I would expect an improved performance tonight.
Big Kat was the fastest heat winner and if she pings the lids she will give them something to catch, my concern with her is that there is a heap of speed in this event and she might ease out at the first turn.
Kiltah Magic can lead them up but I think they will reel her in with about 60m to go.
8HAILSTORM BILLY (NSW)6573734.47(4)A Langton (Anakie)
Mepunga Hayley appears to be a few lengths off her best form at present but this is the easiest race she has contested for quite a while and if she finds the bunny early she should salute. She tends to begin well from wide draw and there doesn’t appear to be a lot of early speed in this event, she is a different chaser when on the bunny and if you can land $3.50 or better that is over the odds in this class.
Macca’s Sway hit the line solidly in his handy 34.57 victory here last week and from the red he should settle a bit closer to the speed than normal.
Coulta Rock should be suited by the drop back in distance and with the lack of speed around him, he should get every chance to settle in the top two and he can run time when given a clear run.
Cornelius Fudge is the only other chance, he has won two of three over this trip and he will benefit from the empty draw on his outside.
8CRACKERJACK MAX 4511630.07(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
Crackerjack Max is a class sprinter in the making and he should prove hard to hold out based on his recent Wentworth Park win in a sizzling 29.79. On that occasion he flew to the first marker and never looked back, he will find it a little hard to cross from the pink tonight but there is very little speed directly underneath so he should be able to carve across.
Bottom Dollar showed a return to form at Ballarat last time with a strong 25.32 victory and if he can show that type of form again he should be right in this. The box draw is a disadvantage but he does have good speed and he has won three of six here.
Dyna Fancy should settle in the top two or three early and she is rarely far away in this company, I dont think she will win tonight but she should figure in the placings.
Great race and I think the speedy Oakvale Flyer should appreciate the rise in distance and she should give the two fancied runners something to catch. Her form at present reads quite ordinary but she is much better than that and last time out at Wentworth Park she was about to assume control before being knocked over. On the bend start she should be able to carve across to the early lead and I think she will have no trouble covering the distance.
Full On Bling has scored two devastating Sandown park wins in recent weeks and if he is given some room early he should make his presence felt. He was a tad disappointing here last week but that was his first look at the track and I’m willing to forgive him.
Untraceable is an absolute beast and if he is switched on he should get the cash, the concern with him is that he can lose focus at times and he does tend to find bother in his races, so from the wide draw he will need everything to go his way early.
Grade 5 event over 525 metres at The meadows Of $7,150 Prizemoney. 1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.
1PUD 33123NBTJ Desaubin (Langwarrin)
2SONIC DASH 31761NBTA Langton (Anakie)
3FEARLESS JOHN 3421330.40(2)J Hunt (Lara)
4USAIN I’M NUTTY 52531NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
5LOUIE NEVEELK 53153NBTR Kleeven (Denison)
6LIARA ALLEN (NSW)2386630.09(2)S Collins (Lara)
7SE’S HIGH ABOVE (GA)4551230.35(7)R Britton (Lara)
8DYNA NIHILIST (NSW)34462NBTJ Hunt (Lara)
9POBBLEBONK Res.88868NBTI Cockerell (Buckley)
Usain I’m Nutty is a highly promising chaser and he is armed with a powerful finish, last time out he showed a bit more early dash than normal at Sandown and that allowed him to score with ease in a blistering 29.45. If he gains a clear passage in the first 50m he should be too strong in the run to the line.
Dyna Nihilist has a ridiculous amount of ability but he doesn’t always show it, from the wide draw he should get plenty of room to muster speed and if he can settle mid pack he should make a strong bid for victory as they get near the finish line.
Pud should hold a forward spot early and she didn’t have much luck in her debut here on Wednesday, she has scored some slick Sandown wins and if she does hold them out she will prove hard to reel in.
Vermont has won three of five to date in commanding fashion and with a clear getaway tonight he should get every chance to lead throughout. Two starts back he showed a great turn of speed when scoring at Warrnambool in 25.30 and a similar effort here will see him figure prominently.
Scunitza Speed led for a long way when placed here two runs back and she should settle on the speed again, she isn’t overly strong but this is quite a weak race and she might be able to hold on.
Young Henry has plenty of gears and if he can get to the outside he will prove hard to hold out. Three runs back he set the Bendigo track alight with a brilliant 23.81 win.
Ulla Allen rounds out the chances, she will hit the line solidly and she tends to race well here.
Allen Icarus hasn’t won for a little while but he is dropping in class tonight and from the red he should prove too good for this lot. He has been placed in 12 of 21 here and with a clean getaway he should have enough early toe to hold them out.
White Walker is another who doesn’t win very often but he is more than capable, two runs back he was narrowly beaten at Sandown Park in solid time and a similar effort here should see him feature.
Nala’s Heart hit the line solidly when placed here last time and if she is given a clear run early she can play a part in the finish, she is better suited to a wider draw but she won’t be desperate to get to the outside.
Victorian chaser Space Star is a contender for run of the year, after producing a brilliant come-from-behind victory in the Group Two Summer Plate final at Wentworth Park on Saturday evening.
Exiting from box eight at just $1.30 with most outlets, the Robert Britton-trained chaser stepped well and sat in third position in the early stages.
Last week’s other heat winner, Starc, was best away from box one and took the lead turning for home the first time, with Space Star unfortunately taken off the track by another runner.
Pushed back to fourth position and 10 lengths from the leader, the 35kg heavyweight shifted to the outside of the track and charged forward, approaching the home turn a mere length behind Starc. In a thrilling finish, Space Star made one last-ditch effort on the line to score by a length in a flying time of 42.18 over the 720m distance.
The son of Bekim Bale and Tonto Tears kept his perfect box eight record of three wins from three starts intact with Saturday night’s win and recorded his first career group win for owner Camilla Limon.
Starc was gallant in defeat finishing runner-up for fellow Victorian mentor Andrea Dailly and rank outsider Smooth Number would have trainer Allen Hansen smiling from ear to ear after hanging on for third place.
Space Star’s victory was the 16th of his career at start No.27, with the $40,000 winner’s purse taking his prizemoney total to $146,700.
Group Two Summer Plate Final full results
1st: Space Star (Robert Britton) – $40,000
2nd: Starc (Andrea Dailly) – $10,000
3rd: Smooth Number (Allen Hansen) $5000
4th: Pumped Up Zarr (Neil Staines)
5th: Double Rinse (Andrea Dailly)
6th: Big Kat (Carl Schlensog)
7th: Serena Nimbus (Neville Brown)
8th: Zipping Rory (Peter Dapiran)
Time: 42.18 First section: 16.16 Second section: 29.58 Run home: 12.60
THE final of the Group Two Summer Distance Plate will be run and won this Saturday night at Wentworth Park, with some outstanding staying greyhounds engaged.
Robert Britton’s Space Star has been made the $1.40 favourite, after a sensational performance last week in a best of the night time of 42.20.
The Richmond 618m-track record holder got plenty of room to move from the outside alley in his heat and blitzed his rivals by ten and a quarter lengths at the finish. He will start from an identical draw in Saturday’s final.
Notable-finisher Zipping Rory will also be well-supported by punters, finishing third in his heat last week after suffering some early interference. Despite jumping from box five in this week’s final, the Peter Dapiran trained chaser recorded a sizzling personal best of 41.75 from the middle alley in a heat of the Sydney Cup last October.
Andrea Dailly has two runners in the final with heat winner Starc, who impressed at his Wentworth Park debut in a smart time of 42.47, and Double Rinse which finished fourth in the same heat.
The final is scheduled to be conducted at 9.29pm EDST, with winning connections set to receive $40,000 in prize money.
Lets hear the inside word from connections and Australian Racing Greyhound‘s expert tipster Brad Bugeja before checking out his suggested bets.
Tom Dailly (kennel representitive): “The red will suit him perfectly. if he could lead Space Star that would be great as he’s the dog to beat. I’d like him to lob onto bunny. i’m expecting him to go well.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Scored an impressive 42.47 heat win last week in his debut here and he would have derived a lot of benefit from that run. He was fair to begin in his heat and after copping a couple of early knocks, he balanced up and really powered to the line. From the good draw he should be in a prominent position throughout and if the favourite finds trouble he should be able to capitalise.”
Allen Hansen (Trainer): “Very hard race against some really good dogs. I’m happy where he’s drawn because he likes the fence so hopefully he can improve on last week. I would love to run a place.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Soundly beaten in his heat and after settling second he got really tired in the run home. Can probably settle in the top three again tonight but I am expecting him to be going backwards with about 120m to go.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Fair effort in her heat but she did turn in an impressive performance here two runs back when placed behind Kiltah Magic. Will continue to improve with more racing but I can’t see her making an impact against this lot.”
Tom Dailly (Kennel Representative): – “[Her] run was very good last week, [s]he was up there early and second up at the track i think [s]he should go ok.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Brilliant Meadows winner two runs back and she looked a little lost in her debut here last week. I would prefer her drawn a bit wider but if she happens to ping away and get into some open space she could run a cheeky race at nice odds.”
Bethany Dapiran (Kennel Representative): “He normally travels up to Sydney better the second week we’ve found. Not an ideal box for him, but hoping he can land in front.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Easily beaten in his heat and was probably a little disappointing but he has proven in his career that he can turn around his form quickly. Earlier in the year he was soundly beaten by Sweet It Is here but the following week he found plenty and won the Summer Cup Final by eight lengths. The box draw doesn’t help tonight but he has the ability to ping away and if he finds the bunny early he should be able to reel off some impressive sectionals.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Soundly beaten by Space Star but was far from disgraced last week, she is suited by the wide draw and she is capable of settling in the first half of the field. I dont think she can win the event but with some luck in running she could sneak into some minor money.”
Neil Staines (Trainer): “I’m expecting him to improve on last week’s run and I think he can go well from box seven. He’s been such a good dog and after his fall at The Gardens he’s starting to come back really good. He’s over four years old now and loves Wentworth Park, so it would be great to see him win.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Has a terrific record here and if he was at his best he would have to be considered a genuine chance, however last week I feel that he was a little ordinary. After beginning well and settling in the top two, he managed to assume control mid race but he was quickly reeled in by Starc, from the wide draw tonight I can’t see him settling in the top three early and I can’t see him making an impact when having to come from off the pace.”
Robert Britton (Trainer): “He went really good last week considering the conditions and i’m happy with the box draw for Saturday night. He will need to lead or be up the front to have a chance in this final.”
ARG’s Brad Bugeja: “Potentially the best stayer in the land and he couldn’t have drawn any better. He should be able to step on terms and after about 50m he should be able to swoop into the first bend and assume control. He has a blistering 41.84 PB over this journey but I think if he finds the lure early he is capable of going a lot quicker than that.”
Victorian mentor Robert Britton has had plenty of reasons to smile this week in the lead-up to Saturday night’s Group Two Summer Plate final, after Space Star dominated a star-studded heat last week in a best-of-the-night 42.20.
Stepping well from the outside alley, the 35kg heavyweight gapped his rivals by 10.25 lengths, with Britton pleased with his chaser’s efforts.
“Absolutely I was pleased with his performance last week and considering the conditions I couldn’t have been happier with his time,” he said.
“Last week he got turned sideways going past the 520m boxes for the first time and still managed to win by a good margin.”
The son of Bekim Bale and Tonto Tears made a return to the metropolitan circuit for the first time since October of last year, when he finished second in a 4th/5th-grade event over 720m, ironically in the same time he recorded on Saturday night.
Britton is hopeful about Space Star’s chances this week, but he emphasised the importance of his chaser being up with the leaders in the early stages.
“I think the key for him in the final is getting to the lead on the first lap,” he said.
“He’s not a really strong stayer in my opinion, I think he’s more of a 680-metre greyhound, however, he does have plenty up his sleeve and is improving.”
Space Star captivated the greyhound world at his maiden start at Richmond in March last year, annihilating the opposition by 26.25 lengths, in setting a new record time over the 618m of 35.00.
Punters could only watch on in awe over the following weeks, as the black flash continued to justify his skinny odds at Gosford (34.21 over 600m), Maitland (31.82 over 565m) and The Gardens (34.89 over 600m). Space Star first set foot on the Wentworth Park track in May of 2014, and clocked a solid time of 30.07 over 520m. His debut performance over the 720m distance at the track came three months later and was certainly worth the wait for all involved, after another outstanding win by 12 lengths, in a blistering time of 41.84.
In November, Space Star headed to Britton’s Lara kennels in Victoria to contest a heat of the Bold Trease Series over 715m and didn’t disappoint his new trainer, winning first-up at Sandown Park in a flying time of 41.65. After finishing second in the final a week later to multiple group-winning chaser Sweet It Is, Britton headed to The Meadows with his newest sensation and recorded another first-up win over the 600m journey in another fast time of 34.37.
Space Star came tantalisingly close to claiming his first Group One victory at Sale a month later, finishing a length and a quarter behind Star Recall in 37.14 over 650m.
After Saturday night’s sensational victory, Britton has big plans to travel further with his newest staying star and his excellent temperament is just an added bonus.
“He’s so relaxed in the car which really helps, because it’s a big trip up to Sydney,” he said.
“I’m looking at the Galaxy over in Perth after this race, but it’s a big ask going all the way over there, but we’ll see what happens.”
TEAM Dailly took out four Group races in 2014 and the powerful Victorian kennel looks primed to start the new year in dominant fashion with three genuine contenders in Saturday night’s Group One Paws of Thunder at Wentworth Park.
Andrea, George and Tom Dailly had an incredible 19 runners engaged across the eight heats last weekend, winning three and running placings with a further five members of their superb team.
However, their two kennel stars, Allen Deed and Dyna Double One, failed to qualify with the former falling just after the start.
“Allen Deed only took five strides and fell so that was the end of him, he is a little bit sore so he probably won’t race for a month or so,” co-trainer George Dailly revealed.
“The other dog, Dyna Double One, did a very good job. People keep forgetting that he is only a baby, he has only had five starts and the dog that led him [Shoulders] is a really good dog. I thought he did a top job to run second to him.”
Dyna Double One is second reserve in the main event on Saturday night. Despite this, they will still be represented strongly by Kerrigan Bale (box two), Spring Leaf (box three) and Maximum Lil (box seven) in the $100,000-to-the-winner feature.
Their fastest qualifier was the ultra-consistent Kerrigan Bale which began well from box eight, leading all the way in a quick 29.80.
A winner of 11 from 33, the daughter of High Earner and Maple Bale went into the race as a recent placegetter in the Group Two Laurels Classic at Sandown Park.
George Dailly was impressed with her display, saying she has always been capable of slick times.
“The pink isn’t the best box at Wentworth Park but they left her alone last week and she had a nice clear run to the first turn,” he said.
“She is quite consistent and she does a good job. She has good early toe so she usually gets out and goes, she doesn’t run too many bad races.”
Kerrigan Bale is drawn in box two this week but, while many trainers would love to wear the black-and-white stripes in a Group One final, Dailly said it would only be a good draw if she was left alone early.
“It will just depend on how she pings the boxes, if she gets out and gets a clear run to the first turn then it won’t bother her but if they jam her up then she won’t be in too good of a spot.
“If she is given a clear run early and is able to lead then she can carve some fast times, she is not a bad bitch. She has to lead though, if she is off the bunny then it becomes a bit hard for her.”
Directly on Kerrigan Bale’s outside is kennelmate Spring Leaf. The daughter of Spring Gun and Scarlett Cath put in an enormous performance in her heat to run down the Anthony Azzopardi-trained My Boy Snoop, clocking 29.92.
“When we watched the race someone mentioned that she had done a very good job to run him [My Boy Snoop] down,” Dailly said.
“He is renowned as a very strong dog but she is very strong as well, I wouldn’t expect her to get run down by too many dogs.”
Dailly mentioned Spring Leaf is faster than what her heat time suggested and said she should be well suited in box three.
“She is faster than that, she did what she had to do to qualify but hopefully she can run a bit faster this week and get a nice clear run. If she is close to them up the back then she will be finishing on strongly.
“The box is good for her, it won’t worry her at all.”
Maximum Lil rounds out their chances from box seven. The black bitch, which is a winner of 16 races, clocked 29.99 when winning her heat from the awkward box five.
Her chances in the race have been hampered by the fact boom sprinter Dyna Villa is drawn in box eight, the same alley he used to win last year’s Group One Melbourne Cup.
“The draw wouldn’t have bothered me too much except for the fact that Dyna Villa has drawn the pink, I think he might give her a bit of grief early on. If he crosses to the rails coming out of the boxes then she is in big, big trouble,” Dailly said.
The field is rounded out by Assertive Bella (box one), Coolabah Jet (box four), Whittaker (box five) and Shoulders (box six).
Overall, the Anakie trainer said it was hard to split his trio.
“I think they basically all have the same chance, I don’t think there is one that stands out. If any of them get a clear run they will be right in it but if they don’t we will be heading home [empty-handed].”
It should be a big night for the Daillys, who also have two runners in the Group Two Summer Distance Plate final over the 720 metres. Their chasers Starc (box one) and Double Rinse (box four) will be aiming to defeat Robert Britton’s Space Star which has a scintillating 41.84 personal best over the track and distance.
“It is a hard race, especially with Space Star in the pink because he can really run and he likes the track. We will just be doing our best to run him down, but they are in the race and are in good form, it will just be whether they are good enough.”
While a win in the staying feature would be nice, all eyes will undoubtedly be on race eight, when the lids fly open for the Group One Paws of Thunder.
Surprisingly, it is one of the few feature races that team Dailly hasn’t won.
Will 2015 be their year?
“It would be nice to win it and we are looking forward to it, it should be a really good night,” Dailly said.
FORMER NSW chaser Space Star made a successful return to Wentworth Park on Saturday night, taking out a heat of the Group Two Summer Distance Plate, producing a brilliant display from box eight.
After stepping well from the outside alley, the Robert Britton-trained chaser quickly sped to the lead at the top of the first turn, taking over from outside runner Big Kat. The $1.50 favourite justified his short odds, gapping rivals by nine and a quarter lengths at the finish, in a best-of-the-night time of 42.40. Space Star hasn’t raced at Wentworth Park since October of last year and notched up win number 15 from start 26. Carl Schlensog’s Big Kat produced a brave effort to finish second, while Serena Nimbus made up good ground to place third. Smooth Runner, which was up with the leaders early on, held on for fourth and qualifies for next week’s final, which offers $40,000 to the winner.
Heat one went to another Victorian chaser in Starc for trainer Andrea Dailly, upsetting $1.80 favourite Kiltah Magic, which led comfortably from box one and unfortunately tired mid-race. Starc sat in fourth position going past the winning post the first time and railed beautifully to take the lead from Pumped Up Zarr turning for home. The son of Bekim Bale and Glory Of Love saluted by two and half lengths in an impressive time of 42.47, on a very wet Wentworth Park circuit. Starc recorded his sixth career win from start number 33 and notched up his first victory since November of last year. Local chaser Pumped Up Zarr finished second for trainer Neil Staines, while Summer Cup Winner Zipping Rory flashed home for third. Andrea Dailly secured her second runner in next week’s final with Double Rinse finishing fourth.
The box draw for next week’s $40,000-to-the-winner final is:
Former Kiwi chaser Above All has put in a breathtaking performance to claim tonight’s Group One Silver Chief Classic at The Meadows.
Trained by Robert Britton, the son of Magic Sprite and Kara Janx began fairly from box five, overcoming some slight trouble in the run to the first turn to sit in second position behind Dyna Villa running through the catching pen.
Once he balanced up down the back, the dashing black chaser set off in pursuit of last year’s Melbourne Cup winner who looked to have a winning break down the back.
As Dyna Villa swung for home, Above All hooked to the outside and unleashed a powerful finishing burst to assume the lead from Jenny Hunt’s kennel star just strides before the line. Boom youngster Dyna Double One ran a gallant race to finish third with Midnight Flynn just fourth.
Above All clocked 29.78 to win the $100,000 to the winner final and has now won 10 of his 16 starts with three minor placings. It was the second Group One victory of his career after he took out the Hobart Thousand in track record time last December.
Incidentally, both of his Group One triumphs have come from box five, highlighting the class of this magnificent chaser.
Britton has already revealed that he will bypass the upcoming Paws of Thunder heats at Wentworth Park and will focus on the Group One Perth Cup series which will commence at Cannington on January 31.
The first Group One of 2015 is up for grabs on Saturday night at The Meadows when an exceptional field of young sprinters lines up for the Silver Chief Classic over 525 metres.
This year’s final is shaping up as one of the best in recent years with a sizzling showdown expected between Dyna Villa (box one), Dyna Double One (three) and Above All (five).
Dyna Villa won last year’s Melbourne Cup, the richest greyhound race in Australia, and looms as the one to beat from the inside. He has good early toe and is expected to be pushing up for the lead on the first turn. He is capable of posting blistering times so, if in front, the other runners would find it near-impossible to run him down.
Dyna Double One is the boom pup on the scene and is unbeaten in four starts. He ran an incredible 29.52 when claiming his semi-final last week, the second-fastest time posted at The Meadows. If he can get room to gallop early, there is no telling what he is capable of.
Above All recently won the Group One Hobart Thousand in track record time and he is a freak in his own right. He can be a touch slow early but he oozes class and can never be discounted.
Away from the three big guns, there are several highly promising chasers contesting the race.
Midnight Flynn (box seven) is out where he wants to be. He ran a commanding 29.84 when winning his heat two weeks ago. If there is any trouble on the inside, he might be the one to swoop around them from out wide and cause an upset.
Emrys (box two) ran a credible second in his semi-final last week. He is a slow beginner but is ideally drawn to hold his position on the rails and sneak into a place.
The remainder of the field is made up of Wheeler-owned greyhounds in Dyna Quirk (box four), Amaro Bale (box six) and Gorham Bale (box eight). They are all rated at pretty long odds, but it is not unlike the Wheeler Dynasty to provide a feature race winner at juicy odds.
The final is race eight tomorrow night and is set to jump at 9:43pm. Let’s hear what the connections had to say:
ARG Opinion - Terrific greyhound which is a genuine star of the sport. He is proven at Group One level and is capable of reeling off sizzling sectionals over the track and distance. He has a good mix of speed and strength and is the one to beat from the coveted inside draw.
Mario Briganti (Trainer) – It was a last-minute decision to put him in the series because I was thinking about stepping him up to 600. He is more destined for a career over the middle distance and further. He is still in there with a chance, but realistically I don’t think he can win. The big guns are in one, three and five and I think one of them will win, I will just be happy to sit behind them and run a place.
George Dailly (Co-trainer) – Dyna Villa has more experience than him and he has a touch more speed [than Dyna Villa] so I think it is pretty even. If he gets caught behind Dyna Villa, Dyna Double One may not be able to figure out how to get past, it’ll be very interesting. He has had plenty of field trials, but against dogs that don’t know what they are doing, the same as him. It is a completely different kettle of fish to going against Group One dogs. Whatever he does, he will improve on.
George Dailly (Co-trainer) – He is a good box dog and he has got very nice early toe. He has got ability and he might give Dyna Double One a hard time early so it is a pity that they have drawn alongside one another.
Robert Britton (Trainer) – It is an outstanding field and he will certainly need a bit of luck to get across from box five. I would like to think that if he comes out well and gets that luck then he will be very competitive. Whether he is good enough to beat the two Wheeler dogs (Dyna Villa and Dyna Double One) I am not certain, but he will be right in it if he gets the opportunity to use his ability.
Michael Carter (Trainer) – The way the field is boxed, I give him a good chance. There is a lot of speed on the inside and they have only got to jam up a little bit on the fence … he should be left alone out where he is. If he can get around them going around the first corner then I think he will take a fair bit of catching.
Steve Collins (Trainer) – It is a tough draw for a slow box dog and a mad railer. He is a pretty smart race dog, one of the smartest I have ever trained, he can hit the handbrake, wait for the opening, and then go through.
George Dailly (Co-trainer) – The dog can really run, given a clear run he can really motor. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him go well if he got a run but he has got to draw near the rails, he isn’t that good drawn off the track.
George Dailly (Co-trainer) – He is stepping up good. He is obviously not going as good as [his brother] Dyna Double One at the moment, but every time he goes out he is improving and figuring out what racing is about. He goes better and better each time, that’s about all you can ask from them.
The last night meeting with betting for greyhound racing in NSW was held in 1927, following the passing of new government legislation. The cinema lobby had claimed they were losing business to greyhound racing and made representations to the state government to have the sport restricted. Meetings at the Epping (Harold Park) and Mascot courses were held henceforth during the afternoon.
Paua To Burn equalled the 600 metres track record at The Meadows in 2005, running 34.09 to equal the mark set by Oh Behave three years earlier.
The NSW Chief Secretary, Mathews, announced in September 1949 that the government had approved the issue of a racing licence to the NSW Greyhound Breeder’s, Owner’s, and Trainer’s Association (GBOTA) to begin on this day in 1950.
The government chose the Vic Peters-led GBOTA from four applicants and issued the licence subject to the GBOTA obtaining use of Harold Park from the NSW Trotting Club. At the time 39 tracks in NSW authorised for greyhound racing, two in the metropolitan area, with 26 meetings a year each.
Victorian sprinter Rare Deceit defeated Grand Illusion by almost four lengths with Queensland star Jurassic Vapour third in the 1997 Adelaide Cup final, running a slow 30.12 for the 512 metre trip at Angle Park.
Amorous Angie completed a rare double when she scored over 500 yards at Ballina in 1950 to stretch her record to six starts for six wins. Amorous Angie had won at the same track, over the same distance just 24 hours earlier.
The Brendan Wheeler-trained Bartrim Bale took out the 2008 Bulli Gold Plate final, running the 472 metres in 26.35 and defeating Spring Smile by two and a half lengths with Awesome Hustler third.
Cool Mat downed Heaps Fast and Sea Serenade to snare the 2006 Gosford Gold Cup in a fair 30.33, using box one to full advantage.
The Robert Britton-trained Coulta Sky defeated Regal Thyme by a nose in 34.64 to win the 2009 New Year’s Cup over 600 metres at The Meadows.
Jimmy Neutron took out the 2003 Silver Chief Classic for trainer Steve McKenna, the first time the race had been held in January. Jimmy Neutron defeated Most Awesome and future champion stayer Arvo’s Junior.
Regal Thyme, despite box six, carved out sectionals of 5.01 and 17.85 on the way to annexing the 2008 Silver Chief Classic by three and a half lengths from Top Fuel in a fast 29.92 for owner-trainer Graham Long.
NSW stayer Best Quoted, attempting to become the first greyhound to win back-to-back West End Draught Distance Championships since Truly Lightning in 1984 and 1985, failed by just three-quarters of a length when second behind the Victorian Mid City Mandy in the 2006 running.
Great Linnie, a much-travelled hurdler with victories in Tasmania and southern NSW, scored an impressive victory over 550 yards in his first start over the hurdles at Wentworth Park, in 1940. Great Linnie had equalled the track records over 638 yards at Wagga and set a 410 yards hurdle record at Hobart. He later equalled the Wentworth Park hurdle record of 33.0.
NSW stayer Best Quoted won the 2005 West End Draught Distance Championship, run over 731 metres at Angle Park, by five lengths from Victorian stayer Arvo’s Junior with local hope Pristine Litenin just over six lengths further back in third place.
THE first Group One race of 2015 is set to be a cracker after four semi-finals of the Silver Chief Classic were run and won over 525 metres at The Meadows tonight.
The final, which will be held next Saturday, is set to be a ‘Wheeler’ affair with five of the eight finalists coming from the legendary racing dynasty.
Time honours went to Dyna Double One, owned by Brendan Wheeler, which stamped itself as a genuine star of the sport, running an amazing 29.52 in the third semi. Winning his fourth race from as many starts, the son of Barcia Bale and Crystin Bale began evenly from box five, quickly mustering speed and motoring away to score by 11 lengths over Amaro Bale.
Melbourne Cup hero Dyna Villa, another owned by Brendan Wheeler, was an emphatic winner of the second semi-final for Jenny Hunt, clocking an airborne 29.74. The dynamic black chaser used his inside draw perfectly, exploding from box two and railing beautifully around the first turn. Once racing in the front, the son of Collision and Roxio Bale was never in danger as he streaked clear to score his 17th career victory at his 27th start over a Emrys which ran a terrific second to book his spot in next week’s decider.
Paul Wheeler claimed the first semi-final of the night, with the Steve Collins-trained Gorham Bale recovering from a slow beginning to rail through and assume the lead on the first turn after many of the frontrunners found trouble. The interference enabled Gorham Bale to slip clear, defeating Dyna Quirk by just under four lengths in 30.16.
The fourth and final semi-final was taken out by Above All for Rob Britton. Despite only beginning averagely from box two, he raced with plenty of field sense to get into second position around the first turn before railing underneath the leader, Midnight Flynn, down the back and racing clear. The 2014 Hobart Thousand victor recorded a hot 29.76, bringing his record to 15 starts for nine wins and three seconds
Silver Chief Classic
Box 1 – Dyna Villa – Jenny Hunt
Box 2 – Emerys – Mario Briganti
Box 3 – Dyna Double One – Andrea Dailly
Box 4 – Dyna Quirk – Andrea Dailly
Box 5 – Above All – Robert Britton
Box 6 – Amaro Bale – Jenny Hunt
Box 7 – Midnight Flynn – Michael Carter
Box 8 – Gorham Bale – Steve Collins
Dyna Yemen – Andrea Dailly Dyna Vikkers – Andrea Dailly
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.
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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
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.
Dyna Double One stamped himself as a star of the future after a surreal 29.55 performance when taking out a heat of the Group One Silver Chief Classic at The Meadows last night.
At just his third racetrack appearance, the son of Barica Bale and Crystin Bale stepped cleanly from box six before exploding in the run to the first turn. Once on the bunny, nothing else stood a chance as Dyna Double One sprinted to the line 13 lengths clear of Astronomize.
The victory kept his unblemished record intact which also includes a slick 29.81 over the track and distance last weekend. The Andrea Dailly- trained sprinter looms as one of the genuine contenders heading into Saturday’s semi finals and the $100,000 to the winner final on January 3.
Dyna Double One was just one of four heat winners for the Wheeler dynasty with their other standout performer being Dyna Villa which clocked a blistering 29.67 win from box seven.
Returning to a two turn track following his third placing in the Hobart Thousand on Thursday, the son of Collision and Roxio Bale was unchallenged throughout, winning dominantly by just under four and a half lengths for Jenny Hunt.
Hunt also trained another of the Wheeler heat victors in Amaro Bale which took out heat three from box one. Stepping reasonably from the inside, the red brindle chaser railed beautifully around the first turn and held on for a strong 30.10 triumph.
Andrea Dailly trained the Wheeler’s fourth Silver Chief heat winner which also happened to be a litter brother to Dyna Double One in Dyna Quirk. The red fawn dog, which does not turn two until March, scored his second win at start three, stopping the clock in a handy 30.04.
Dailly also scored a win in the final heat with Crackerjack Max leading virtually all the way from box two in a nippy 30.07, defeating Vapour Lee for Lyn Smith.
Rising WA chaser Tureaud also scored an impressive heat win in the opening qualifier.
The Paul Stuart- trained youngster stepped well from box four and was never in doubt, setting a hot time of 29.72 over the 525 metre trip. It was win number nine at start 13 for the regally bred black dog, a son of Kinloch Brae and Starlight Delly, a litter sister to champion bitch Miata. Ikaku Bale ran on well to pinch second for Andrea Dailly with Harden Bale filling the trifecta back in third.
Astromatic caused the biggest upset of the night in heat four when defeating recent Hobart Thousand hero Above All.
Astromatic, paying $18.60, began terrifically from box seven and quickly assumed the lead. Once in front that was where he stayed for the entire race, just getting in over the line in front of a fast finishing Above All.
Above All was far from disgraced after finding of trouble during the run before making up a stack of ground. He will get every chance to redeem himself in next Saturday’s semi finals.
It has been a top year for Jeff Britton and Angela Langton and the couple look to have a live chance in the Silver Chief series after Weston East saluted for Angela in heat two.
Clocking 29.90, the son of Oaks Road and Hot Spur used box one to his advantage by railing underneath the field following a slow beginning.
Once he was through the pack and sitting in second position, the black dog hooked to the outside of the leader, Dyna Alchemist, around the home turn and sprinted clear in the straight.
Midnight Flynn was another winner which managed to break the 30 second barrier, clocking 29.84 from box two, while Emrys was the slowest heat victor, although in saying that his time of 30.16 was still very good.
The semi-finals of the Group One Silver Chief Classic will be held at The Meadows next Saturday night.
The complete list of heat winners is as follows:
Heat One – Tureaud (29.72) – Paul Stuart Heat Two – Weston East (29.90) – Angela Langton Heat Three – Amaro Bale (30.10) – Jenny Hunt Heat Four – Astromatic (30.09) – Stephanie Cameron Heat Five – Emrys (30.16) – Mario Briganti Heat Six – Dyna Quirk (30.04) – Andrea Dailly Heat Seven – Dyna Villa (29.67) – Jenny Hunt Heat Eight – Midnight Flynn (29.84) – Michael Carter Heat Nine – Dyna Double One (29.55) – Andrea Dailly Heat Ten – Crackerjack Max (30.07) – Andrea Dailly
The box draw for the four semi-finals are as follows:
Group One Silver Chief Semi-Final 1 Vapour Lee – Lyn Smith 2 Walt Bale – Jenny Hunt 3 Harden Bale – Tina Womann 4 Amaro Bale – Jenny Hunt 5 Dyna Double One – Andrea Dailly 6 Astromatic – Stephanie Cameron 7 Fleetwood Jay – Angela Langton 8 Dyna Alchemist – Steven Collins 9(Res) Decanus – Kerry Chalker 10(Res) Mr Emgrand – Luke Azzopardi
Group One Silver Chief Semi-Final 1 Zipping Ryan – Peter Dapiran 2 Dyna Villa – Jenny Hunt 3 Emrys – Mario Briganti 4 Charleston – Joe Borg 5 Serco Bale – Tina Womann 6 Dyna Vikkers – Andrea Dailly 7 Ikanu Bale – Andrea Dailly 8 Crackerjack Max – Andrea Dailly 9(Res) Quartz Bale – Paul Staurt 10(Res) Fearless John – Jenny Hunt
Group One Silver Chief Semi-Final 1 Axis Bale – Jenny Hunt 2 Gorham Bale – Steven Collins 3 Lektra Outlaw – Andrea Dailly 4 Prescribe – Ted Medhurst 5 Tureaud – Paul Stuart 6 Dyna Quirk – Andrea Dailly 7 Duomo Bale – Jenny Hunt 8 Fleetwood Zack – Angela Langton 9(Res) Quarrel Bale – Steven Collins 10(Res) Macca’s Sway – Joe Borg
Group One Silver Chief Semi-Final 1 Izzey Bale – Andrea Dailly 2 Above All – Robert Britton 3 Dawkins Bale – Jenny Hunt 4 Astronomize – Paul Stuart 5 Weston East – Angela Langton 6 Ultima Bale – Steven Collins 7 Midnight Flynn – Michael Carter 8 Usain I’m Nutty – Andrea Dailly 9(Res) Dyna Yemen – Andrea Dailly 10(Res) Hunter Rocks – Garry White
Angel Of Music is probably one of the most talented maiden chasers going around and today she should be able to break through, she has been placed in eight of 12 starts to date and three starts ago she led until the shadows of the post when placed at The Meadows in fast time. From the pink she should be able to carve across to the early lead and she will prove hard to reel in.
Fiorelli micha has a heap of talent but she wont go past the leader, two starts back she pulled up three times in the run and amazingly wasnt sighted by the stewards, today she should settle mid pack and once she gets up to the leaders she should idle up alongside them and fill the quinella spot.
Tigers Hero is a member of the powerful Robert Britton kennel and he is drawn to run a big race, he was solidly placed here on debut and he should have derived a lot of benefit from that run.
The main race of the day and i think the speedy Lady Ronray can cross early and she should steal the prize. Her last 50m isnt great but she will be burning along early and im expecting them to shuffle up behind her as they head through the first bend. In her two runs here she has run similar sectionals and overall time and those numbers should be enough to get the cash.
Lamia Bale has the clear class edge and she must never be discounted, im a bit concerned about the draw tonight but she has great track sense and she can work her way through the field.
Weblec Rose continues to improve and she made Lamia Bale look like a 5th grader here last week, if she pings and runs again she should give a great sight.
Weblec Belle is going to be well fancied but i think she is a massive risk from the red, she will look to shift out at the first bend and she may take out half the field.
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – She is well boxed, I think the two will give her a bit of room. I am hoping she can get out well and put herself in the race because if she begins slowly she could get into a bit of trouble.
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – I didn’t know she was capable of running 4.93 early but when they (Weblec Rose & Weblec Belle) cam to me there wasn’t must difference, she just hasn’t been racing as well. I don’t think she came to racing as quickly as Weblec Belle. If she does what she did last week I think she will be very hard to beat.
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – She is poorly boxed because there will be a lot of speed from the outside coming down on her. She is going to have to rely on a bit of trouble, she is very strong, so if there is a little bit of a pile up and she can get around the other dogs then she is a bit of a chance.
Ray Steele (Trainer) – I think it will suit her out there because she can come out really good off an outside draw. Her early speed is her best attribute but she will really need it on Sunday because there are seven other handy dogs in the race. She has got to use all of her early speed to be any chance
Jeff Britton (Trainer) – She was stiff last week not to get through. She was last early last week and the dog that was back with her put her into the fence and then she got run off the track when she tried to make some ground. If she can get into the race she will always be a chance.
Best Sandown Park Times
If Weblec Rose (2) can begin like she did last week then it is hard to see anything leading her. She showed what she was capable of, clocking 4.93 early and 29.39 overall. She does like to get off the track a touch but she shouldn’t be threatened too much early from her direct outside and, as long as she gets clear galloping room around her, I think she can find the front and be too strong.
Lady Ronray (7) is a class runner and she also shows tremendous speed early. She is a flawless beginner week in, week out, but she does have to cross six other runners here and a few of them can show early toe too. She will need to lead to win as she did get a little bit tired in the final stages last week, but if she can find the front she can record slick time on the bunny. I think she is the value runner in the race and is definitely the one to be on if the odds are too short for Weblec Rose.
Weblec Belle (1) isn’t a brilliant beginner but she is drawn well to get a nice run along the rails and she is very strong in the run to the line.
Lamia Bale (6) is in top form but wont be helped by the poor draw and a lot of speed in the race. She can record some sizzling early sections in her races, however she has a bit going against her today.
The Group Two Laurels classic is race eight and will jump at 4:17pm.
Kiwi owner/breeder Alison Lee is still on cloud nine after her superb greyhound Above All scored an emphatic victory in last night’s Group One Hobart Thousand.
Beginning well from box five, the Robert Britton- trained chaser found the front in the early stages and put on an effortless demonstration, defeating Ride The Rails by seven and three quarter lengths with Melbourne Cup champ Dyna Villa back in third.
“It is surreal, I still can’t believe it”, Lee enthused, “It was very exciting and a great experience”.
Lee made the trip from the Land of the Long White Cloud to the Apple Isle to cheer on her brilliant black performer, thinking that he would race well in the $75,000 to the winner feature.
“I thought that if he jumped and got a bit of clear room that he would be a chance, but I really thought the one (Big Ticket) and two (Dyna Villa) would have jumped better and that he would have had to tuck in behind them”, Lee explained.
“Rob (Britton) said that the four (Blurred Lines) missed the jump and it gave him that little bit of room which he used to his advantage.
“Although he was in front, I wasn’t too sure because he had Dyna Villa behind him, but he just kept going.”
Not only did Above All record one of the most dominant Hobart Thousand wins in recent times, the son of Magic Sprite and Kara Janx also smashed the track record previously held by one turn king Paw Licking, clocking a breathtaking 25.52 over the 461 metre trip.
Lee said his effort to shave 12/100ths off the previous Hobart benchmark was just the icing on top of the cake.
“I couldn’t believe that he broke the track record and I didn’t even realise he had until I got down to the presentation. He went well and to top it off I was then told the track was a little bit soft too, so to get the track record has just made it unbelievable.”
Above All came into the Hobart Thousand series after having a freshen up following his fourth placing in the Melbourne Cup. Lee said that the short break was pivotal for Above All, with just 11 starts to his name before the Tassie series.
“He was unlucky in the Melbourne Cup, he got a couple of checks and we think he hit the rail. For him to hold on for fourth, we were really happy with the run.
“We wanted to keep him fresh, he races better that way and he is only young so Rob has just decided to race him lightly and pick out races for him.”
Above All qualified for Australia’s oldest race with a phenomenal last to first heat performance on December 11. Showing maturity and field sense way beyond what his racetrack experience would suggest, the 32 kilogram powerhouse weaved his way through the field and captured the lead in the run to the line.
“It was a huge run in his heat”, Lee said, “We were absolutely screaming back home.”
“When he jumped and got checked I thought ‘on no’ but he really used his brain, he went back to the rail and found his way through the field.”
Now with 13 starts for eight wins and two minor placings, Above All looms as one of the most promising and exciting chasers in the country. Lee, who bred him with her partner Merv O’Brien in New Zealand, said that they virtually knew from day one that he was superbly talented.
Based on this, they decided to send him to Australian shores to race under the tutelage of Britton, who previously trained their former gun speedster, Clone Your Own, to win the Group Two Harrison-Dawson.
“The bloke that broke him in said that he was quicker than any other dog he has put around.
“When I got him home I hand slipped him at Addington and the time that he ran home in for his first trial was huge. I knew then we had to get him over to Rob as soon as we could.”
“Rob is brilliant, he is such a good conditioner. He looks after his dogs, they are always fit and in brilliant condition and the whole family- Rob and Mary and Pete and everyone that works there, they are just really great.
“Plus they always buy him an ice cream and a cheeseburger on the way home”, Lee laughed.
At this stage, the next goal for him is tomorrow night’s heats of the Group One Silver Chief at The Meadows, however Lee explained that the final call will rest with Britton to determine whether the dog is ready to back up in the 525 metre feature.
“Rob wasn’t going to make any commitments until he was back at home and settled in his kennel, but if there are any issues then he will scratch him straight away.”
Lee and O’Brien, who have been breeding greyhounds for 18 years, look set to have a wonderful ride ahead of them with Above All.
“The sky is the limit for him and Rob will just pick and choose the races for him to go in and eventually he will stand at stud.
“As long as he stays fit and sound he should have a huge future, it is great what he is doing for New Zealand racing.”
The Robert Britton- trained Above All has put in a breathtaking performance to claim this year’s Group One Hobart Thousand, defeating an outstanding young field in the process.
The son of Magic Sprite and Kara Janx was the standout heat winner last Thursday, coming from last early to surge clear in a time of 26.16 over the 461 metre trip.
With a better beginning from box five this week, the black powerhouse showed everyone what he is really capable of when getting on the bunny, obliterating the field to score by seven lengths in a phenomenal 25.52.
Another cracking night at Sandown Park ahead of a fantastic Group Two Laurels Classic which will be held on Sunday at the track. Hopefully we can get you a few winners tonight so that you have plenty of cash to load up on the big race on Sunday.
Best Bet: Race 2: Armed And Ready
Best Roughie: Race 1: Se’s High Above
Quaddie: Leg 1: 1,3,6,7,8 – Leg 2: 1,3,7 – Leg 3: 2,3 – Leg 4: 1,2,3,6 $120 for 100%
Race No. 1Onautos.com.au7:06 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 515 metres at Sandown park Of $7,150 Prizemoney. 1st: $5,000 2nd: $1,430 3rd: $720.
1ANDIAMO NEO 24651NBTR Crisafi (Pakenham)
2SPRING GRACE (NSW)51216NBTA Dailly (Anakie)
3LEKTRA UTOPIA 45113FSHA Dailly (Anakie)
4FARMOR EYE AM (QLD)216230.01(3)R Britton (Lara)
5SHOUT OUT LOUD 31171NBTB Brown (Axedale)
6SE’S HIGH ABOVE (GA)7335429.59(1)R Britton (Lara)
7ALLEN QUARIAN (NSW)31261NBTJ Hunt (Lara)
8TELL ME MA 321FSHJ Carr (Devon Meadows)
9BILLY BUBBA Res.35532NBTJ Naughton (Berwick)
10ADDIS REVENGE (NSW)Res.33874NBTL Smith (Langwarrin)
Andiamo Nemo has the good draw and he recently caught the eye with a strong 28.17 Bendigo win. He has been placed in three of four here previously and this is the weakest race he has contested at this track. With the wide running Spring Grace drawn on his outside he should get a very clear run into the first turn and he should break away as they head for the back straight.
Spring Grace was a zippy 30.20 Meadows winner two runs back and she should give a great sight. In her past three starts she has recorded sizzling early sectionals and I can see her leading again tonight. She tends to drift wide through the turns so I dont think she can hold out the red.
Se’s High Above is armed with a monster finish and she shouldn’t be too far away at the end, she tends to find a lot of trouble so she could be a good anchor for third and fourth in your exotics.
Allen Quarian is a powerful chaser and if he can find the rail early he should be in the finish, my concern with him is that he can miss away and he will be looking for the rail.
Armed And Ready was beaten when on debut here last time but I’m expecting him to make a lot of improvement tonight. He was a tad slow to begin last week and he had to work hard mid race to stay in contention. From the red tonight he should be able to hold them out early and then put a space in them mid race.
Satsuki Bale is dropping in class and she hasn’t had much luck since her handy 30.11 Meadows win, she is drawn poorly again tonight but the four should give her a nice cart across and that should allow her to settle in a prominent position.
Dyna Chaser returned to form at Geelong with a highly impressive 25.86 Geelong win and if he gets across early he will prove hard to hold out, unlike most of his opponents, he is able to run a genuine 515m.
Xtreme Gretel is a former American chaser now in the care of the in form Robert Britton kennel, he comes here with solid credentials so it will be worth watching the betting moves.
Come On Fantasy is dropping considerably in class and she is drawn to make a big impact. Five starts ago she posted a strong 29.62 win here from this draw over 515m and in that effort she gave every indication that this trip will suit. There is no speed on her outside so if she can step cleanly she should get every chance to lead all the way.
Sonic Pirate has a solid record here and he should be in the mix for most of the journey, he tends to get a little tired in the run home but if he happens to cross the red early he may just be able to establish a race winning lead.
Zipping Bart charged home when placed at Bendigo last time and with some luck early he should be there again, however if he is short odds I would be risking him as he does make a lot of mistakes in his races.
Dyna Glinda rounds out the chances, she has the ability to ping the lids and she caught the eye when winning at The Meadows in 30.12 three runs back.
Grade 5 event over 715 metres at Sandown park Of $8,225 Prizemoney. 1st: $5,750 2nd: $1,645 3rd: $830.
1PRINCESS PASS 44534FSTDJ Sharp (Lara)
2MAVERICK BOMBER 52385NBTM Cartechini (Hallam)
3MIMICKING (NSW)4775242.15(8)R Britton (Lara)
4EXQUISITUS 46255FSTDJ Imlach (Pearcedale)
6CAMBRIDGE PRINCE 33212NBTA Langton (Anakie)
7BORN ALI 538T641.97(3)R Britton (Lara)
8TEARS SIAM (NSW)5874141.91(8)R Britton (Lara)
Tears Siam is the litter sister to gun stayer Space Star and she made a dazzling Victorian debut here last week when winning by a staggering 20 lengths in 41.91. Once again she has drawn perfectly in the pink and if she steps on terms with them again she should prove far too classy for these. She is likely to start $1.50 or shorter but that is still massive over’s against this lineup.
Exquisitus has the ability to lead them up and she may be suited to this journey, outside of the pink this is a very weak race so she should get her own way out in front and she should run a cheeky race.
Born Ali is much better than her recent form suggests and she should give a nice site. She is clearly a fair way from her best but she should still be good enough to fill the quinella spot.
Cambridge Prince rounds out the place chances, he has been racing in consistent fashion and he appeared to hit the line a lot better at Geelong over 680m last time out.
Allen Eryk has been racing in good style here of late and his effort three runs back was enormous. Tonight he has the luxury of slow beginners drawn on his outside so with a clean getaway he should be able to poke through and lead as they head past the post the first time. He is quite strong in the run home so if he does happen to lead I can’t see anything reeling him in.
Oakvale Flyer is making her middle distance debut and she shouldn’t have too much trouble covering the ground. She tends to race best when on the speed and this race doesn’t have too much pace so she should be able to lob in the top two early.
Smart Maxwell is better than his form reads and he does have a very zippy 34.17 PB here, if he can come out cleanly and get a clear run he could give a nice sight at odds.
Cornelius Fudge has regained his best form of late and he should be suited by the wide draw, I dont think he can win tonight but I think he is a genuine place chance.
Dyna Nihilist is an absolute beast and I think he can get the job done tonight. Two starts back he turned in a monster performance when placed behind Hobart Thousand finalist Ride The Rails and with an ounce of luck tonight he should go one better. At present he is one of the fiercest chasers in training and he really does look suited near the rail.
Papa Hook has the ability to lead and he is nearing another win. He has recorded three impressive placings in a row here and if he happens to cross them early they might just bunch up behind him and he could steal the prize.
Creative Karisma has a great record here and he should run an improved race from the red, he does have a sizzling 29.34 PB here and with the lack of speed on his outside he should be able to get a clear run in the early stages.
Jayney Bale is a class act and she is capable of just about anything, however tonight I think she is limited to a place chance because she may get posted wide for most of the journey.
Maximum Lil can be hard to follow at times but when she pings the lids she is capable of running blistering times. Two starts back she stepped cleanly and reeled off an explosive 29.86 Meadows win, tonight she meets a similar lineup and apart from the pink there is no early speed at all, so she should get every chance to show her best form.
Where’s The Surf has been placed in six of ten here and he has been desperately unlucky in his past two starts, with an even getaway tonight he should be able to sit just behind Maximum Lil in the early stages and he will then apply pressure as they turn for home.
Hello Good Bye is a long way from his best but two starts back he did record a strong 29.54 win here, if he can repeat that effort he shouldn’t be too far away at the end.
Mepunga Moss had no luck here last week and she is capable of pinging the lids, she is down on confidence but if she finds the bunny early she can turn in an improved performance.
5BUCKLE UP MASON (TAS)5535229.26(5)J Hunt (Lara)
6HAWK ALONE 2556629.38(2)A Dailly (Anakie)
7DYNA NICO (NSW)2622329.62(1)A Dailly (Anakie)
8PRINCE TO EXCEL (NSW)8152529.67(2)G Jose (Catani)
Awesome Project is a gun speedster and he should make light work of this lineup. Two starts back he stepped up in distance to score a dazzling 34.23 win here over 595m and I think he is better suited back to this journey. There is a bit of speed drawn around him tonight but he should be able to out muster them and if you can land $2.50 or better that is value.
Hawk Alone is never far away over this journey and he should be able to return to some form, there is a fair bit of speed in this event so he should be able to settle mid pack and that will allow him to avoid trouble at the first turn.
Humphrey Bale was far from disgraced when placed here last week and from the red he should be in the mix again. He will need a bit of luck at the first turn but if he gets it he should make an impact.
Musquin Bale beat Humphrey Bale here last week and he must be respected again, my concern with him tonight is that the two dogs underneath him have enough speed to match him and he may be posted wide for the first few hundred meters.
Pennsylvania Is surprised me here last Sunday when he came from off the speed to score in 34.59, from the red tonight he should be able to push through and lead them up and on the bunny he should go a lot quicker on the clock. I think he can possibly get down to the 34.20 mark and there isn’t anything in this field that can get down to that sort of time.
Diva’s Shadow is making her middle distance debut and she should give a great sight. She is armed with smart early speed and she should match motors with Pennsylvania Is for most of the journey, she may get a little tired in the run home but she should be able to hold on for a place.
Bonjour Bonsoir was far from disgraced when placed at The Meadows last time and she should be in the mix again, she lacks early speed but she is strong and she is a must for your exotic bets.
Tricky Rose is back to her brilliant best and she is drawn to make a big impact. Three starts back she showed a dazzling turn of foot soon after box rise when scoring at The Meadows in 30.31 and she should take some stopping again, with a clear run she is capable of running some serious time and this looks her race.
Rumero Reason has turned in three strong performances since resuming from a short spell and he is bursting to break through. He is going to need a lot of luck in running but if the gaps open at the right time he could get the cash.
Dyna Fatbob is dropping in class and he is suited by the rails draw, he can be hit or miss early but he is capable of good things when he steps cleanly.
Polly Bale rounds out the chances, she is better than her form reads and she only needs a clear run in the first 50m to feature.
Hestia Bale has been racing well in much stronger company of late and she gets her chance to score tonight. She is better suited to a rails draw but she still has the speed to cross and she has won three of her seven tries here.
Sage Bale should be in the mix for a long way and he too is dropping in class, with a wide runner on his outside he should get a clear passage early and he will get his chance to make an impact.
Dr. Rahoual is well drawn out wide and he will be strong in the run to the line, he has won here previously in a solid 29.67 and if given some room early he should be able to turn in a similar effort tonight.
King Rockstar rounds out the winning chances, he has speed to burn and if he settles in the top two early he may prove hard to reel in.
Humming Birdhill put her best paw forward last time out and she looked ultra impressive when scoring at The Meadows in 30.06. In that effort she showed a great turn of foot soon after box rise and with a similar run in the early stages tonight she should get every chance to lead throughout.
Jagman continues to improve and he should run a big race again, last time out he beat the exciting Gunloch at Cranbourne in 30.57 and he only needs luck early to feature.
Flame Bale scored a hot 30.14 Meadows win three runs back and if she repeats that effort she should run a big race again, she normally shows early speed and there isn’t a whole lot of speed drawn underneath her.
Hilda’s Best should follow Flame Bale across early and he should make up for his luckless effort here last week.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
It should be a terrific day at Sandown Park with the semi finals of the Group Two Laurels classic and that is where we are headed with today’s tips.
Race No. 4Ideal Fasteners3:13 PM (VIC time)
Grade 5 event over 715 metres at Sandown Of $2,175 Prizemoney. 1st: $1,525 2nd: $430 3rd: $220.
1SURVIVOR SAL 77456NBTT Cortese (Hampton Park)
2MEPUNGA SAMMY 87676FSTDJ Britton (Anakie)
3HEAVENLY STAR 66556FSTDG Graham (Woodleigh)
4MIMICKING (NSW)3477542.15(8)R Britton (Lara)
6ABBEY’S HAND 87126FSTDR Britton (Lara)
7SUNDAY SESS 17875NBTD Murray (Napoleons)
8TEARS SIAM (NSW)65874FSHR Britton (Lara)
Mepunga Sammy has had no luck at all since resuming from a spell and he should be suited by the rise in distance. Back in April he posted a blistering 29.32 victory here over 515m and if he can produce those sort of sectionals early he should be able to build up a monster lead mid race. Being by Bekim Bale and the manner in which he hits the line over 515m, I believe he should have no trouble covering the ground.
Tears Siam is ideally drawn out wide and she comes here with solid NSW staying form, she has recently joined the powerful Robert Britton kennel and she should be primed for a bold first up showing in Victoria.
Abbey’s Hand should settle near the speed and she should give a nice sight, the last 50m may be a concern but she should be able to hold on for a place.
Mimicking is a long way from his best but this is the weakest race he has contested for a while so he must be included in your exotic bets..
8PENNSYLVANIA IS 17851FSTDA Paraskevas (Cranbourne South)
9IN BLACK GEAR (NSW)Res.51888FSTDA Langton (Anakie)
Opec Bale has been racing in explosive fashion and he really powered to the line when scoring at Horsham last time in 32.79. With a clean getaway tonight he should be able to settle in the top three and he should prove far too strong in the run home.
Macca’s Sway is making his debut over this journey and he should be suited by the rise in distance, he has had no luck in recent times but if you go back through his form he does have a brilliant 27.37 Horsham victory to his credit.
Pennsylvania Is has the good draw and she should lead them up for a long way, I’m not convinced that she will run the journey but she should have enough in the tank to hold on for a place.
Dr. Des rounds out the chances, he has a lot of talent and he has won here previously in a smart 34.43.
The girls get their chance to shine as the Group 2 Sandown Laurels series kicks off on Sunday. The $50,000 to-the-winner race is open to the best 64 female greyhounds nominated that are whelped on or after 1 June 2012.
The heats take place at Sandown Park on Sunday, followed by semi-finals the following week with the final taking place on 21 December 2014.
The heats contain greyhounds of varied experience and class with a number of noted Group performers scattered throughout.
Here’s a look at the chances in each heat;
Heat One – Race 1 at 2:04pm
The stand-out is Oakvale Destiny (1). She is already a multiple Group race winner and took out the bitches-only Group 1 Sapphire Crown earlier this year, so she is well and truly proven in this class. She will be a short-priced favourite.
Only two other runners in the field have won at Sandown. Come On Fantasy (2) stopped the clock at 29.62 three runs back to score her first win at the track from four attempts. Career wise she has won just three from 18. Image Puzzle (4) is a lightly raced bitch whose only career win came at Sandown in 29.88. She has led most of her races and will need to lead by a very long way to be any hope of defeating Oakvale Destiny.
Of the other runners, Miss Shirleen has been in the placings plenty of times but has been racing over longer distances. She is also yet to win from box eight.
Heat Two – at 2:40pm
The Foot Luce sisters appear to have the second race between them. Footluce Diva (3) and Oakvale Flyer (4) are litter-mates to Oakvale Destiny, who is in the first heat. Oakvale Flyer (4), unlike most of the others in the litter, possesses a bit of early toe. If she shows that she will be hard to beat. She was a runner-up behind her sister in the Sapphire Crown and has won five at Sandown with a best of 29.43. Footluce Diva has raced around the track in 29.35 and has won three from seven at Sandown. She loves the rail so the draw looks good. She just has to avoid trouble early on.
Fratelli Fresh (6) has won two from three at the track and eight from 18 overall in her career. Her best at Sandown is 29.75 but she is yet to score from box six. She is very strong and more than capable on her day.
Hashtag Selfie (8) has not long started her career, with just the seven starts under her belt. She has won two and placed on three other occasions. She won her maiden at Sandown in 29.98 from box five. The draw for this heat is the widest she has drawn in her career and she will need to lead early to be in the race at the end.
Heat Three – Race 5 at 3:16pm
Mepunga Hayley (1) is a Group race winner but she hasn’t won a race since August. The box draw is great for her as she has won three from four wearing the red stretch vest. Her best at Sandown is a fast 29.29.
Pud (8) is the veteran of just eight starts and has been impressive in her last two runs, running best on day at Cranbourne and Sandown. The Mogambo and Mum’s Heart (Elgrando – Zulu Zepha) bitch led all the way in 29.44 last week and clocked a handy 5.02 early. This will be a test for her to see if she can rise in class.
Diva’s Shadow (7) and Hestia Bale (8) have both recorded three wins from five starts at Sandown. Diva’s Shadow has been the quickest of the two with a best of 29.45. Her last two starts have been nothing flash and has won just one from three out of box seven. Hestia Bale has won one from three out of box eight and lacks the pace to cross the field.
Satsuki Bale (3) can show early speed and has won six from 19 overall. She has not really taken a liking to Sandown yet, failing to win after three attempts at the track.
Heat Four – Race 7 at 3:59pm
The talented Secret Spell (5) will be looking to bounce back after running last in the Group 2 Ballarat Cup final behind Luca Neveelk. The Batrim Bale and Wicked Witch (Larkhill Jo – Witch Magic) bitch has won eight from 11 including one at Sandown in 29.26. A lot depends on how she steps but there does not appear to be much pace drawn around her.
Jamiela Twist (1) hasn’t put a foot wrong at Sandown, placing on each occasion she has raced at the track. Her best winning time is 29.39 and she looks well drawn on the rails.
Farmor Eye Am (2) has started just twice for a win and a second. It is a big jump from just breaking your maiden to starting in a Group 2 event but she is in the astute hands of Robert Britton so needs to be respected. She cracked her maiden at Sandown last week in 30.01 and is the improver in the field.
Mepunga Diva (7) has won twice at Sandown, with her best time of 29.58 coming from box five. She is a risky beginner but when she gets it right can sizzle early as shown by her best first split of 4.96. If she can begin well she will be up in the firing line.
Heat Five – Race 9 at 4:40pm
Handy NSW bitch Lady Ronray (2) gets her chance to show what she is capable of in the fifth heat. She trialled in 29.68 and that should be good enough to take this out. The Cosmic Rumble and Ronray Disco (Bombastic Shiraz – Ronray Lass) bitch has won 13 races from 16 starts and possesses plenty of pace so she should be able to get to the lead where she does her best work.
Julie Bale (5) has been racing over the staying trip with success and has been doing plenty of racing of late. She has not won over the 515m at Sandown but she has won three from box five.
Breshia Bale (7) steps up for her first 500 and is coming off a best-of-day performance over the 480m at Horsham. She can handle a wide draw and is a value each-way chance.
Heat Six – Race 10 at 4:56pm
Weblec Belle (3) is fresh off a win in the Group 3 Brian Johnstone at Angle Park, defeating Oakvale Destiny in impressive fashion. She has won four from seven at Sandown. She is racing very well at the moment so she is a big hope.
NSW bitch Jewel Action (6) has been improving at Sandown. She finished second behind Jordan Allen last week to improve on the last place she got at her first start at Sandown. She runs fast sections early at Wentworth Park and she will need to do that here to overcome the draw.
Rocka Hula Baby (8) has won her last two races including a 29.54 win last start at Sandown. The Premier Fantasy and Brislane (Brett Lee – Thai Again) bitch is in good hands with trainer Kelly Bravo but is yet to prove herself from a wide draw.
Heat Seven – Race 11 at 5:11pm
West On Delly (7) has won her last three on the trot around The Meadows and Sandown. The Brett Lee and West On Bluebird bitch started her short career off in WA in qualifying trials. She has had six starts in Victoria for three wins and two placings. Her best at Sandown is 29.67.
Lamia Bale (1) won well over 595m at Sandown on Thursday night in a heat of the Sir John Dillon Memorial and has won over this trip in 29.47. The only problem with the box one draw is that she likes to get off the track. She is better from a wider box. She has recorded a best of 29.48 at Sandown.
Jayney Bale (2) has won four of her last eight. Two of these have been at Sandown. The Jarvis Bale and Kumar Bale (Kiowa Sweet Trey – Winfrey Bale) bitch has won six from 15 in her career and has a good record from box two.
Heat Eight – Race 12 at 5:26pm
Dyna Nico (2) loves to be drawn near the rail and she is a great beginner. She has just the two wins at Sandown from eight attempts with a best of 29.62 but the draw brings her into the race.
Kerrigan Bale (5) has three wins at Sandown but likes to be drawn closer to the rail. She has been racing some class dogs like Kiss Me Ketut and Chica Destacada in recent times so she will appreciate racing against some of the more inexperienced chasers in this field.
American import Se’s High Above (6) won her maiden at Sandown in 29.59. She has not won at Sandown since but she is a very strong chaser. She lacks pace early which can be a problem from the draw.
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.
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
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.
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;
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.
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.
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.”
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.”
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
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.
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;
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.”
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.”