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

FRIDAY, AUGUST 24 (T/G): Nominations close at 9 a.m. (SA time) on Monday, August 20 with GRSA. SUNDAY, AUGUST 26: Nominations close at 9 a.m. (SA time) on Tuesday, August 21 with GRSA. TRIALS: Every Tuesday and Saturday, commencing at 9 a.m. (SA time). Bookings on arrival at track.


Late night caller thunders home for another impressive win

Monday, August 13, 2018

Portland greyhound trainer Brian Weis well remembers the night a couple of months ago and a close- to-midnight knock on the door. Turns out it was a greyhound transport driver to inform Weis that he had a greyhound on board for him.

Theo’s Thunder defeats Bereluke at Tara Raceway on Sunday.

“To be honest, I wasn’t expecting any new greyhounds and had no idea as to what the dog was or, in fact, who owned the bloody thing,” Weis said.

“As it was, it was about another three days before I received a phone call from one of the owners. ‘Yes, sorry about that,’ he said. ‘I meant to ring you a few days ago’.”

Turns out the dog was Theo’s Thunder, a son of Dyna Double One and Victorian city winner Miss Suzie Que, that had raced on Victorian tracks on eight occasions for seven minor placings.

The black dog’s first two starts at Tara Raceway resulted in a second and a win over 512 metres in a steady 30.98 seconds but after he followed up soon after with a best of day 29.85 seconds win Weis was starting to wish that he received more late night calls.

Brian Weis and his granddaughter Alex pictured with Theo’s Thunder after his win.

Theo’s Thunder, after three runs at Horsham, was back at Tara Raceway for Sunday’s meeting, drawing box six in a pretty handy South Eastern Hotel Stake (512 m) for grade five greyhounds.

He settled in third spot early and ultimately did a good job to defeat hot favourite Bereluke who attempted to lead all the way before going down by three-quarters of a length to Theo’s Thunder in a time of 30.37 seconds.

The win was the first leg of a double for Weis, Hill Top Hood later staging a big performance to win the Metal Worx Stake (512 m).

A maiden winner last month at Tara Raceway, the brindle dog was slowly away from box one and set himself a fair task before finishing strongly to defeat Cee Me Turbo – a nice trial for the forthcoming Peter Rocket Winter Classic – by a head in 30.46 seconds.

Hilltop Hood defeats Cee Me Turbo (8), Teacup Toni (7) and Crikey Creeky.

For Weis, it was the second time in the space of a month that the pair had won on the same day at Tara Raceway and his third double for the year after Xtreme Caution and Xtreme Purpose – a good third on Sunday in the Trackside Meats Stake (512 m) behind Chilly Kiss and Ben Nevis – were successful early in the year.

Meanwhile, locally-based Noel Perry, only training greyhounds since last month, continued on his winning way on Sunday when George Regis led all the way to defeat Big Lebowski by 1¾ lengths in a best of day 23.16 seconds.

The win in the Stake (400 m), the second heat of a grade five series, completed a good few days for Perry, who has now trained five winners, after Mount Ghost was successful in the Greg Martlew Autos Stake (400 m) on Friday.

Veteran chaser wraps up big week for visiting trainer

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Rising five-year-old greyhound Allen Jersey broke a long run of outs at Friday’s rain-affected Tara Raceway time-graded meeting and in doing so wrapped up a big week for Meningie trainer Tim Richards.

Allen Jersey (No. 4) finishes strongly to win the Gambier Vets Stake (512 m) at Tara Raceway on Friday.

Richards, who landed a double at Angle Park on the Monday night with Game Face and Sketchy Gun, was chasing his first Tara Raceway winner since Allen Paul had been successful in December last year, the well-fancied Allen Jersey lining-up from box four in the Gambier Vets Stake (512 metres).

By Turanza Bale out of Ucme Typhoon, and a half-brother to the now-retired champion stayer Fanta Bale, Allen Jersey chased Ace Gone Wild for much of Friday’s race, in the end grabbing a head decision in 30.79 seconds.

Tim Richards with Allen Jersey after his first win in 18 months.

Richards and Sheree Hayes took over the ownership of the brindle dog close to two years ago after he had won eight races on Victorian city and provincial tracks – the brother and sister team winning a further five races at Angle Park prior to last Friday’s success at his 111th start.

All told, this had been Allen Jersey’s 14th win but his first in 18 months, Richards telling of his battle to keep him on the track after the dog had been struck down with career-threatening injuries.

“To be honest, I’m amazed that he’s still going around, let alone winning. Not long after his last win at Angle Park he broke a toe and then later dropped a back leg muscle which generally spells an end to a dog’s racing career.

“These days it’s a constant battle to keep him sound but it goes without saying that I couldn’t be prouder of his effort today when he ran down the leader to finally win another race in what were pretty ordinary conditions for all competitors.”

Now that Thursday racing at Tara Raceway has concluded, the time-graded meetings will revert to alternate Fridays and complement the weekly Sunday fixtures. The next time-graded meeting will be on August 24.

Final hit-outs for Winter Classic aspirants

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Dusty Pearl and Lika Missile, who fought out last month’s John Reid Memorial final at Tara Raceway, will clash again on Sunday as a lead-up to the Peter Rocket Winter Classic (512 metres), heats of which are scheduled for Sunday, August 19.

In the Reid Memorial it was the Steve Bartholomew trained Dusty Pearl who held on to defeat Lika Missile by a nostril although the tables have since been turned with the Tracie Price trained black dog winning the Trackside Meats Stake (512 m) 10 days later.

Handler Angela Williams with Lika Missile, one of the fancied Winter Classic contenders.

The pair will clash in Sunday’s Gambier Vets Stake (512 m), Dusty Pearl jumping from box two and Lika Missile probably not that well drawn out in box seven, while another classic-aged runner in Pinecutter Pete will line-up from box eight for Scott Blacksell.

Adding even more interest to the grade six race will be Jamie Quinlivian’s Talitha Cumi, too old for the classic but looking well placed after a 515 metre win at Angle Park on Monday night in 30.14 seconds.

Bartholomew and his wife, Lee, of Worrolong, look to hold a strong classic hand with their Dyna Tron x Azumi Touch litter which, besides Dusty Pearl, also includes Azumi Ryder, a winner of four races and jumping from box one in Sunday’s Trackside Meats Open Stake (512 m).

The Bartholomew team will also be chasing their second classic this year after Galactic Panther defeated Price’s Dynamite Danger by the narrowest of margins in February’s Peter Rocket Summer Classic at Tara Raceway.

Compton-based Price won the inaugural Winter Classic in 2014 with Stylish Moment and again the following year with Cee Me Burst who is the dam of Cee Me Turbo (by Cosmic Rumble), a likely starter in this year’s classic.

By Nitro Burst out of Oh Cee Ya, Cee Me Burst is a litter sister to Smart Missile and Duna Runa and a full sister to Lika Missile and Jet Flyer who will make his debut at Tara Raceway on Friday in the Metal Worx Maiden Stake (400 m).

The Winter Classic is for all dogs and bitches whelped on or after July 1, 2016.

Iron Dog series to be run next month

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The annual Metal Worx Iron Dog 3-Distance Series will kick off at the beginning of next month at Tara Raceway with the first round being run over 600 metres on Sunday, September 2.

The second round the following week will be over 400 metres while the 512 metre final round on September 16 will be made up of the leading pointscorers from the heats of the first two rounds.

This will be the fifth running of the popular series in its present format, Cap Abbott’s Manila Express winning the event back in 2014 prior to Richard Clayfield’s Upset Boy and Monty Wilson’s Boolite Bruiser dead-heading the following year.

And then in 2016, the Nicole Stanley trained Old Jock, something of an iron dog anyway with 130 starts to his name, won the series before another durable greyhound in the form of Jeff Guy’s Paraphernalia was successful last year.

All that remains now is for the 400 metre leg of the series to eventually be replaced by a 732 metres round. Then we’d see who the real Iron Dog was!

Country Cup heats for Tara Raceway

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The Mount Gambier division of the SA Country Cup will be run at Tara Raceway on Sunday, September 23.

Future Past defeats Thanks Tubby, Cryer’s Ricky and Vector in the 2015 SA Country Cup heat at Tara Raceway.

A maximum of two heats will be run over 512 metres with the two winners to represent Mount Gambier in the SA Country Cup final (515 m) at Angle Park on Adelaide Cup night on Friday, October 12. In the event of only one heat being run, the first two placegetters will represent the club.

Other representatives will come from the Gawler, Strathalbyn and Port Augusta clubs with trainers reminded that conditions apply and the terms of eligibility should be checked.

The Country Cup, a once-popular series when there was an abundance of country greyhound tracks, returned to the racing calendar in 2013 when it was run at Gawler and won by the Tracie Price trained Moorak Hope.

In 2016 Berry Bling won the Country Cup at Strathalbyn for owner-trainer Nicole Stanley. This was the last time the cup final was alternated between Gawler and Strathalbyn, a move by the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club to run the final at Angle Park on Adelaide Cup night implemented as from last year when Colden Girl and Paraphernalia represented the local club.

Country Cup final prizemoney will be $5000, $1250, $625 and others $100.

Emerley Giggler has the last laugh

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Dale Hogan is the latest Horsham trainer to venture over to Mount Gambier and win his first race at Tara Raceway.

Emerley Giggler (No. 3) defeats Slipper’s Away (centre) and Bushman’s Bro in a tight go at Tara Raceway last Sunday.

Hogan, 42, who has been involved in greyhound racing for 12 years, lined up with former Adelaide short-courser Emerley Giggler from box three in the Metal Worx Stake (400 metres) at last Sunday’s meeting.

And while this was her first look at the track, the 24 kilogram brindle bitch did come into the race with a fair sort of record, having won five 400 metre races at Gawler and one over 388 metres at Angle Park prior to joining Hogan’s kennels last month.

Obviously unfazed by the new surroundings, Emerley Giggler quickly found the front, leaving Bushman’s Bro and Slipper’s Away to do the chasing as she opened up a handy break down the back.

However, the trio turned for home virtually on terms, a slogging finish resulting in Emerley Giggler defeating Slipper’s Away by a half head with a further head back to Bushman’s Bro in a time of 23.56 seconds.

Dale Hogan with Emerley Giggler, his first Tara Raceway winner.

By Nolen out of Emerley Charmer, a winner of 16 races and $25,000 in stakemoney, the winner was bred and owned and trained for much of her career by well-known Adelaide participant Judi Hurley who has enjoyed considerable success with greyhounds carrying the “Emerley” prefix.

Emerley Giggler is now the second of the litter to have won at Tara Raceway after fellow Horsham trainer Judy O’Neill had previously been successful with Emerley Indigo on two occasions.

Hogan will be back on Friday for Tara Raceway’s time-graded meeting with his winner of last Sunday, looking a fair chance once again after drawing box one in the Stake (400 m).

For Slipper’s Away, having her second run for Richard Clayfield after joining his Glenroy kennels last month, it was a case of another near-miss after previously going down by a lip to Wise Stella.

Go Saints (No. 2) scores a narrow win over Azumi Spirit (No. 6) and Andrew’s Gift at Tara Raceway last Sunday.

Slipper’s Away is by Swift Fancy out of Slipper’s Tonic, Clayfield enjoying plenty of success in 2014 with Slipper’s Might and Slipper’s Will who were from an earlier litter by Lochinvar Marlow which also included Adelaide Cup winner Ernie Bung Arrow.

Slipper’s Might won nine races at Tara Raceway and was in fact the first greyhound to break the 23-second barrier over 400 metres when running 22.93 seconds at the end of March 2014, while his litter sister won 10 races in the same year.

Jen and Monty Wilson with Go Saints.

And for Mumbannar trainer Monty Wilson the first two races on Sunday proved to be real “heart stoppers” after Go Saints was a half head winner and Bushman’s Bro an extremely close third to Emerley Giggler.

Give away greyhound Go Saints, a recent finalist in the John Reid Memorial, was looking to win her first race at start number 29 when lining up from box two in the Laser Electrical Maiden Stake (512 m).

In the end, she led all the way, Azumi Spirit looking to have her measure off the back but running even wider than the leader on the home turn before continuing a path down the outside of the track – Go Saints hanging on for dear life and giving Wilson his eighth winner for the year.

By the US-bred sire Kiowa Producer, Go Saints is out of Gold Chalice, a winner of 10 races, including three over 600 metre at The Meadows, and a bitch that traces back to the Lenehan foundation brood bitch Sydney Gem.

As it turned out, it was a good couple of days for the litter, Lost Love, a winner of nine races, successful on the Friday prior at Bendigo over 425 metres.

Peckham pair lands classy double

Monday, August 6, 2018

David Peckham, of Allendale East, took the training honours at Sunday’s Tara Raceway meeting when Usain Insane and Blitz And Bolt both impressively won for the first time this year over the 512 metre journey.

Usain Insane defeats China Catch ‘Em and Redda in the Klaassens Contractors Stake at Tara Raceway on Sunday.

By Bekim Bale x Swift Blaze, Usain Insane was rewarded for some consistent recent form when leading all the way in the Klaassens Contractors Stake, denying China Catch ‘Em four consecutive wins when defeating that greyhound by 2¾ lengths in a best of day 30.15 seconds in the Klaassens Contractors Stake.

Blitz And Bolt, off the scene for the first five months of this year due to injury, found the front going into the back straight in the Mixed Stake and then defied a smart field to run him down, eventually defeating Big Lebowski by 1½ lengths in 30.25 seconds.

Blitz And Bolt found winning form again over 512 metres when defeating Big Lebowski on Sunday.

Blitz And Bolt, a litter brother to Thursday’s 600 metre winner Goldie’s Run, narrowly missed out on representing Mount Gambier in last year’s SA Country Cup final at Angle Park on Adelaide Cup night and looks like he could be about the place again this year as could Usain Insane.

Peckham is no stranger to Country Cup runners – this year’s local heat/s being run next month – Bourne Again and Thanks Tubby representing the club at Strathalbyn in 2014 and Thanks Tubby again the following year at Gawler.

Bungaloo Thor (No. 3) scores a narrow win over Our Bro Pedro in the Produce Store Stake.

Meanwhile, the Bungaloo Syndicate and John Little’s winning run continued at Tara Raceway’s Sunday meeting when another of the Addis Boy x Camo’s Prinny litter in Bungaloo Thor was successful in the Produce Store Stake (512 m).

The black dog chased odds on favourite and tearaway leader Our Bro Pedro for much of the journey, finishing the stronger in the run home to score by a head in a personal best time of 30.34 seconds.

A dead-heater when winning his maiden last October, Bungaloo Thor has now won three races from 40 starts with his previous win being six months ago.

Compton trainer Tracie Price wrapped up the meeting with a win when Who’s Doing What youngster Whatta Knocka scored an emphatic win in a best of day 23.25 seconds in the Gordon Refrigeration Open Stake (400 m).

However, there was no joy in Darwin on Sunday night for Tara Raceway’s leading trainer when Rockoon, an odds on favourite from box one in the Darwin Cup Consolation, never really got into the race when finishing unplaced.

Cindy’s turnaround comes from out of the blue

Friday, August 3, 2018

Cindy La Moment’s win in the Klaassens Contractors Stake (512 metres) at Tara Raceway’s time-graded meeting on Thursday came from out of the blue in more ways than one.

Not only is the greyhound bitch blue in colour, she carried the blue rug when jumping from box four and with her past four starts all resulting in her finishing in 8th spot, beaten margins ranging between 15 lengths and 18 lengths, it’s probably fair to say that it was a win that came from out of the blue.

Shane Flink and trainer Tony Harding pictured with Cindy La Moment after her Tara Raceway win on Thursday.

Cindy La Moment chased Gotta Wobble Up until the home turn before finishing the stronger in the run home to score by 2½ lengths in a personal best time of 30.46 seconds for Hamilton trainer Tony Harding who rarely misses a Tara Raceway meeting.

For sure, this appeared to be a form reversal of some magnitude although Harding was quick to jump to the winner’s defence.

“The trouble is she’s a railer and she’d drawn out wide at her past four starts,” he said. “I know box four wasn’t ideal for her today but at least she was able to find the rails and get a bit of clear running. That made all the difference.”

Taken over by Harding in May, Cindy La Moment – his third winner this year – is by Nolen out of Penny La Plume with the trainer now looking at the August 19 heats of the Peter Rocket Winter Classic (512 m) with the July 2016 whelping.

Earlier in the day, the Harding-trained Gypsy Shane, with beaten margins ranging from 9½ lengths to 27¾ lengths at her past four starts, got among the money for the first time at what was her tenth start when running a 1¼ length third to litter sister Bungaloo Jedda in the Laser Electrical Maiden Stake (400 m).

Bungaloo Jedda opened her winning account at start number 35 at Tara Raceway on Thursday. She’s pictured with trainer John Little.

By Addis Boy out of Camo’s Prinny, Gypsy Shane is raced by the trainer’s travelling companion Shane Flink who was over the moon after his pint-sized 24 kilogram bitch finally ran a place for him.

For the Bungaloo Syndicate and Kongorong trainer John Little, Bungaloo Jedda’s win was a case of perseverance paying off with the black bitch finally winning her first race at start number 35 when finishing strongly to score in 24.11 seconds.

Later, the syndicate and Little brought up a double – their first since Bungaloo Lucy and Bungaloo Ruby were successful 12 months ago – when Premier Choix won the Metal Worx Stake (400 m).

Dean Fennell and Goldie’s Run, a winner over 600 metres.

Recently acquired from Adelaide after 10 starts at Angle Park for a win and three minor placings, Premier Choix led all the way from box one at her first Tara Raceway start, eventually holding off a fast finishing Azumi Striker to win by 1¼ lengths in a handy 23.38 seconds.

By Magic Sprite out of Bon Choix, the winner is a litter sister to recent Auction Series winner Springvale Choix who next Thursday night will contest the SA final of the National Distance Championship (731 m) at Angle Park.

Dean Fennell, of Glencoe, after taking over the training of Goldie’s Run at the beginning of May, won his first race with the son of Cosmic Rumble and Moonshine Sally when he was successful in the JB Irrigation Mixed Stake (600 m) in a time of 35.82 seconds.

Always on the pace, the consistent performer railed through on Last Princess off the back and after looking the winner turning for home had to pull out all stops to hold off the durable Blondy Two who made up a stack of ground to get within a head of Goldie’s Run.

It had been a busy six days for the Sandra Elmes trained Blondy Two, who had still been a maiden when running second at her 27th start to Last Princess at the previous Friday time-graded meeting before fronting up again on Monday at Ballarat where she finally opened her winning account over 545 metres prior to returning to Tara Raceway for Thursday’s meeting

Success for long-time Horsham trainer

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Even though Horsham greyhound trainer John Weir-Smith has been involved in the sport for more than 50 years it wasn’t until last Sunday that he finally lined up with his first Tara Raceway runner – El Grand Richo.

Horsham trainer John Weir-Smith with El Grand Richo, his first Tara Raceway winner.

And even then, it’s probably fair to say the only reason Weir-Smith opted for a run in Mount Gambier was because Clint Jonasson, based down the road at Warracknabeal, had nominated Rogue One so he decided to join him in the trip over.

As it turned out, Rogue One finished unplaced in the JB Irrigation Maiden Stake (400 metres) while El Grand Richo, after settling in second spot, ran out a length winner over a fast-finishing Brinza in The Border Watch Stake (400 m).

Weir-Smith must have wondered why it had taken him so long to finally make the 2½-hour trip.

By El Grand Senor out of Sandown Park and The Meadows winner Miss Ronny, El Grand Richo is raced by the Richo Syndicate which is managed by the winner’s breeder, James Dickson of Mount Eliza.

She’s now won five races, two of those since joining the “Lucky Kennels” of Weir-Smith, who is the fifth trainer for the black bitch which has also won in Hobart and Horsham.

Between 2010 and 2012 Weir-Smith put the polish on Jonasson’s smart chaser Kynan’s Express, who raced on 74 occasions for 24 wins, 21 minor placings and more than $67,000 in stakemoney.

In fact, prior to an injury sustained in February 2011, Kynan’s Express had raced 48 times for 22 wins – which included the Bendigo Young Star Classic and breaking the Shepparton 390 metre track record – and 13 minor placings.

These days, things are considerably less hectic, Weir-Smith, ably assisted by his wife Miriam, content with training a small team and certainly deriving plenty of pleasure from his first winner at Tara Raceway.

Chilly Kiss extends lead in GOTY

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Handler Shane Flink with Connie Miller’s Chilly Kiss, current leader in this year’s Greyhound of the Year.

Long-time trainer Connie Miller, of Allendale East, has won a stack of races and awards over the years, not the least being the 1983-84 Greyhound of the Year with Versuveus who defeated Tara Topar by two points.

And a stirring win by the Miller-trained Chilly Kiss in last Sunday’s Williams Crane Hire Mixed Stake (512 m) now has the daughter of Spring Gun and Chilly Babe enjoying a 6½ point lead in this year’s Greyhound of the Year over Oh No Beta, trained by Nicole Stanley who is chasing her third successive GOTY win after Old Jock and Fiorelli Rose.

Since winning a 512 metre feature grade five at odds of $34 in February, Chilly Kiss hasn’t looked back, winning a further five races at Tara Raceway over 400 metres, 512 metres and The Tankman over 600 metres at cup time.

Miller will now be hoping the brindle bitch can extend her GOTY lead when she jumps from box eight against a smart field in Sunday’s Mixed Stake (512 m) while Oh No Beta needs to win the Gordon Refrigeration Stake (400 m) to keep in touch.

See “Statistics”.