The Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club, Lake Terrace East, Mount Gambier, SA

SUNDAY, AUGUST 25: Nominations closed. THURSDAY, AUGUST 29 (T/G): Nominations close at 9 a.m. (SA time) on Monday, August 26 with GRSA. SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 1: Nominations close at 9 a.m. (SA time) on Tuesday, August 27 with GRSA. FREE TRIALS (for members/$10 non-members): Every Tuesday and Saturday, commencing at 9 a.m. (SA time). Bookings on arrival at track. PATHWAY RACING: All eligible greyhounds will be considered for some Pathway races at Sunday meetings. Trainers must advise NO PATHWAY if they do not wish to be considered. See GRSA website for Pathway conditions. WORK COMMENCES ON KENNELHOUSE UPGRADE: See “Gallery”.

Mt G Greyhounds

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Balboa Fury set to deliver knockout punch

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Monarto South greyhound Balboa Fury wrapped up his preparation for this Sunday’s Winter Classic final (512 m) at Tara Raceway with a big effort up the straight at Murray Bridge on Wednesday afternoon.

Owned and trained by his breeder, Tony Hinrichsen, the November 2017 son of My Bro Fabio and Lethal Fury brought up his first straight track win when finishing strongly over the 350 metre journey.

Tony Hinrichsen with Winter Classic favourite Balboa Fury.

The win came on the back of an outstanding Winter Classic heat win last Sunday when he overcame a slow start from box seven before running out a 3¼ length winner over Close Your Eyes in 29.83 seconds.

It was also a case of Hinrichsen’s winning run continuing, the Murray Bridge Greyhound Racing Club president having led in a treble with Degas, Stiff Upper Lip and Breemelia Swift at last week’s Tara Raceway time-graded meeting.

As far as this year’s Winter Classic is concerned, Balboa Fury looks to have a bit on his rivals in terms of experience and ability, Hinrichsen saying after last week’s best-of-day win that he was hopeful the black dog would later develop into a top stayer.

Portland trainer Nicole Stanley – second in the 2016 Winter Classic with Hay Miss – was more than satisfied with the run of her maiden greyhound Close Your Eyes and also well pleased after drawing box two in Sunday’s $2220-to-the-winner final.

“I believe she’s some chance of leading from the two and then hopefully give them something to catch,” Stanley said. “She’s raced on only two occasions with her appearing to be very nervous when at the race track for the first time the previous week but a lot better last Sunday.”

Whelped in July 2017, Close Your Eyes is by Taylors Sky out of Lady Jasmin and raced by long-time Adelaide owner Barry Stewart who, Stanley said, had been very happy with the blue bitch’s run.

Cruising By defeats Little Queeny in the second heat of last week’s Winter Classic at Tara Raceway.

The second of the classic heats was a messy sort of affair as suggested by the race time – 30.90 seconds and something like 16 lengths slower than Balboa Fury’s heat.

Coming out on top was Cruising By, trained at Allendale East by David Peckham. Having her fourth race start, the August 2017 daughter of Kinloch Brae and Midnight News broke through for her first win after three minor placings.

Second-placed Little Queeny, after making a real mess of the start from box six, pleased her Penshurst owner-trainer John Cameron when going down by only a neck at what was her third race start, the September 2017 daughter of KC And All and Lektra Kelly sure to be improved by the run.

Prizemoney boost for Country Cup heats

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Prizemoney for Mount Gambier’s SA Country Cup heats, to be run over 512 metres at Tara Raceway on Sunday, September 22, has been significantly boosted.

This follows an announcement this week from Greyhound Racing SA Racing Manager Shaun Mathieson who said the increase had been made to align Mount Gambier’s heat prizemoney with Gawler and Murray Bridge, the two other clubs involved in this year’s series.

“There will be a maximum of two heats run by each club with the winners qualifying for the 515 metre final on Adelaide Cup night. If there is only one heat run then the first two placegetters will qualify,” he said.

Mathieson said that while the club heats could be run with eight greyhounds the final at Angle Park on Friday, October 11 would be staged as a six-dog race.

“The heats at Mount Gambier, Gawler and Murray Bridge will total $2290 each with a prizemoney breakdown of $1495, $430, $215, unplaced $50 while prizemoney for the Angle Park final is $5000, $1250, $650, unplaced $200.”

While the SA Country Cup is open to all SA greyhounds that are not above grade five at Angle Park (APK City  A and APM City B meetings), the Mount Gambier Club is allowed to include non-SA trainers under certain conditions.

The conditions include that the trainer has had starters at Tara Raceway on at least 15 occasions over the past 12 months and he or she must have trained the greyhound nominated for the previous three months.

All greyhounds must have started at least twice in the past 12 months at the track they are attempting to represent.

Visiting trainer’s big day at Tara Raceway

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

As things turned out, it was Kyneton owner-trainer Adam Wilcock’s biggest day at a greyhound track when he brought over a team of four to race at last Sunday’s meeting at Tara Raceway.

This was his first time at the Mount Gambier track, the end result being a winner with his first runner, a quinella a couple of races later – his first double and first quinella in only 18 months of training – and a second placing in the last race.

It was back in February 2018 that Wilcock took over the training of his first greyhound, Chatterbox Laura, who had previously been trained at Portland by Nicole Stanley.

Owner-trainer Adam Wilcock pictured with Zipping Ester who kicked off a big day for him at Tara Raceway last Sunday.

And while Chatterbox Laura won only the one race at Shepparton a couple of months later, it was enough to convince Wilcock – who says he has no regrets over a “misspent youth” when living in England and taking in plenty of greyhound meetings with his father – that he wanted to become further involved in the sport.

Twelve months ago, the 43-year-old Wilcock, also a manager of professional boxers and a fight promoter, moved to a 12-acre property in Kyneton where he currently has nine greyhounds in work and is rearing four pups.

“Look, it’s still a work in progress but with the help of my children, Eli and Skye, things are starting to come together and we’re all really enjoying the lifestyle,” he said.

Wilcock, who made the 4½-hour journey from Kyneton to Mount Gambier claiming to not really know where he was going but enjoying the scenic drive anyway, said the main purpose of the trip had been to try and get an injury-plagued Zipping Clare into a six-dog race with slightly less pressure.

But earlier in the day it was Zipping Ester who kicked off her trainer’s big day, the brindle bitch finishing strongly in the Klaassens Contractors Stake (400 metres) to defeat Miss Adelaide by 2½ lengths in 23.80 seconds on a rain-affected track.

Wilcock picked up Zipping Ester – a granddaughter of Al Fresco (also the dam of former Tara Raceway record holder Mantra Miss) – in late December last year after she had run a performance trial at Bathurst, the daughter of Don’t Knocka Him and 14-race winner Zipping Tess having now won four races.

Forty minutes later kennelmates Bush Regis and Flash Fernando quinellaed the Williams Crane Hire Stake (512 m) for Wilcock, the former taking over the running down the back before hanging on in the run to the line to win by a head in 30.67 seconds.

A son of My Bro Fabio and Sooky Suzie, Bush Regis has now won three races for his current trainer who took him over prior to the black dog having won a race. Among his littermates are Our Menace and Pa’s Chance, both winners at Tara Raceway for local trainer Noel Perry.

And Flash Fernando is a litter brother to this year’s Fairthorne Forestry Mount Gambier Cup runner-up, Slingshot Hammer, a winner of 21 races and $140,000 in stakemoney.

Butch Regis (No. 7) scores a narrow win over Flash Fernando and gives Adam Wilcock the quinella in the Williams Crane Hire Stake at Tara Raceway last Sunday.

By the time the final race, the Greg Martlew Autos Stake (400 m), came around Wilcock had been shooting for a treble, Zipping Clare well fancied after resuming from a three-month break with a first and second at Ballarat and Horsham.

By My Bro Fabio out of Zipping Summah, Zipping Clare had won four races prior to Wilcock purchasing her almost 12 months ago – five more wins have followed, with her owner-trainer now looking at breeding with her.

“She’d been advertised for sale on one of the greyhound sites for about three months and because I had breeding in mind the longer she remained for sale the keener I became.

“In the end I contacted Martin (Hallinan) at Clergate and took possession of her last September before winning three races in succession at Bendigo, Ballarat and Sandown Park in October-November.”

Zipping Clare gave it her best shot last Sunday when running a half-length second to Shannah’s Gift – Wilcock more than happy with the effort and probably wondering why it had taken him 18 months to make that scenic drive to Mount Gambier.

Black Spring back among the winners

Monday, August 19, 2019

Black Spring’s success in Sunday’s Open Stake (600 m) saw him take his number of wins at Tara Raceway to nine, the most of any greyhound at the track this year.

Black Spring pictured winning over 600 metres at Sunday’s Tara Raceway meeting.

It was also his first win since an enforced injury spell saw him off the scene for five weeks prior to resuming a month ago, three fast-finishing minor placings over 512 metres suggesting a win over his favoured 600 metres wasn’t too far away.

Surprisingly, the Edenhope-based Black Spring was sitting in second spot with a lap to go, a position that was always going to make him hard to hold out at the business end of the race.

As it turned out, by the home turn the Cap Abbott owned and trained dog had taken over the running, ultimately posting a strong 2½ length win in 35.35 seconds over Cryer’s Plugger and Spinning Jakit (a kennelmate and litter brother to the winner).

By Spring Gun, Black Spring is out of Lektra Scarlett, currently the leading dam at Tara Raceway for 2019 with 22 wins.

And it was a handy weekend for the litter – Lektra Theory scoring a big win over 531 metres at Gawler on Friday prior to Lektra Spring running second in a 600 metre heat at The Meadows on Saturday night.

Veteran pair continues on winning way

Saturday, August 17, 2019

It’s been a while now since Blazing Moment and Bekim Lucy’s – both members of the Bekim Bale x Lucy’s Moment litter – last raced.

Blazing Moment, trained for much of his career by Tracie Price at Compton, retired early this year after having won 17 races at Angle Park, Mandurah, Cannington, Gawler and Mount Gambier, along with reaching the finals of the 2017 Darwin Cup and the 2018 Mount Gambier Cup.

And Bekim Lucy’s, trained throughout her 67-start career by Price, retired more than 12 months ago after winning 11 races – including wins over 731 metres and 732 metres at Angle Park and Mount Gambier – and in April this year whelped a litter of three dogs and four bitches to Spring Gun.

Kevin Ashton with Dimora Bekim after his win at Tara Raceway last Thursday.

But litter brother Dimora Bekim, now a rising five-year-old, continues to race well at Tara Raceway for his veteran Charlton trainer Kevin Ashton who took over the ownership and training of the black dog in late November 2017.

Dimora Bekim, at this stage of his racing career now well-suited to the time-graded format, brought up his third 400 metre win from his past five starts at the Mount Gambier track when leading all the way in last Thursday’s Laser Electrical Stake to defeat Nix Jakit by 1¾ lengths in 23.51 seconds.

All told, the November 2014 whelping has won 13 races, Ashton having picked up seven wins, although after a win in February this year Dimora Bekim experienced a five-month losing spell, his wily trainer initially at a loss to pinpoint the problem.

“I’d been over him that many times but I couldn’t find anything wrong with him,” Ashton said. “Eventually, though, I found a deep-seated shoulder problem and after working on that he is now racing more consistently.”

One of the reasons for the introduction of time-graded racing was to enable greyhounds to stay in the system longer and extend their racing careers. Ashton once again took advantage of the format with three other runners last Thursday – Mr Agro, Mr Perfect and Ollie Aztec – all five years or older.

Big Rough brings up his 12th win at Tara Raceway.

Meanwhile, the durable 4½-year-old Big Rough, at start number 123, won his second time-graded race this year for Mount Gambier part-owner and trainer Noel Perry and his wife Heather.

A son of Lochinvar Marlow and Bogie Dawn, Big Rough was purchased as a pup by the Perrys from Nhill breeder Andrea Gurry. Later, Perry, due to circumstances beyond his control, took over the training of the black dog after he had won 10 races at Tara Raceway.

Despite drawing a handy field in the Winmore Greyhound Kennels Stake (512 m), Big Rough quickly had the race in his keeping after finding the front going out of the first turn, eventually running out a 2½ length winner over Loroupe in 30.31 seconds.

Master Winslow makes it two wins for the week when successful at Tara Raceway on Thursday.

It was also a good week for Mininera owner-trainer Robert Proctor who was successful up the straight at Healesville on the Monday with Master Winslow and three days’ later at Tara Raceway’s time-graded meeting with the same dog.

Bred by Proctor, Master Winslow was heavily backed to win the South Eastern Hotel Stake (400 m) and once finding the rails never really looked in any danger of defeat, on the line having four lengths to spare over Crackerjack Tim in 23.65 seconds.

A son of Vee Man Vane and Proctor Rules, the win was his first at Tara Raceway although he had previously won on six occasions at Healesville, Proctor saying the 35 kilogram black dog probably has never reached his full potential.

“Master Winslow broke in well and I was really excited about his future prospects,” he said. “But a subsequent stopper bone injury has hindered his career to the extent that these days I’m just happy to see him go around safely and win the occasional race.”

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