THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24 (T/G): Nominations closed. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 27: Nominations closed. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 31 (T/G): Nominations close at 9 a.m. (SA time) on Monday, October 28 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. BORDER CHALLENGE: Mount Gambier v. Warrnambool. $4000 to the winner final at Warrnambool (450 m) on Thursday, December 5. Mount Gambier conditions: Trainer must be financial member of club. Greyhound must have been in the trainer’s kennel for the past three months and have raced at least twice in the past 12 months at Tara Raceway. Trainer must have raced on at least 15 occasions in the past 12 months at Tara Raceway. Maximum of two heats (512 m) with the first two from each heat to represent Mount Gambier. First four to represent the club if only one heat.
PLEASE NOTE: NO TRIALS ON TUESDAY, OCTOBER 29 DUE TO TRACK MAINTENANCE.
Thursday, January 19, 2017
Edenhope trainer Cap Abbott is taking a serious look at the forthcoming Summer Classic at Tara Raceway after Irka Jakit’s impressive Juvenile win at Angle Park on Monday night.
The daughter of Fabregas and Albion Park 600 metre winner Another Request led early before settling in second spot and then running home strongly to edge out Cairnlea Kenny by three-quarters of a length in 30.02 seconds for the 515 metre journey.
The win was the John Dihm-owned Irka Jakit’s second this year after scoring by 9¼ lengths at Tara Raceway over 512 metres in a handy 30.29 seconds on January 1.
Heats of the Summer Classic, a non-penalty event for all dogs and bitches whelped on or after January 1, 2015, will be run on Friday, February 3 with the $3000 final on Sunday, February 12.
“She’s only now starting to put it altogether,” Abbott said. “And being a February 2015 whelping she’s the ideal age for the classic so at this stage I’m hopeful that she’ll take her place in the line-up.”
The win completed a couple of good days for Abbott who on the Sunday at the local track had been successful with Blazin’ Vicky, an all the way winner of the JB Irrigation Mixed Stake (512 m) in 30.31 seconds.
The third running of the Summer Classic looks like attracting a fair sort of line-up with Moyston trainer Peter Franklin back at Tara Raceway tomorrow with several of his May 2015 McIvor dogs.
Also attracting some interest at Tara Raceway tomorrow, from a classic point of view, will be Robert Halliday’s April 2015 Premier Fantasy x Cairnlea Ellie whelpings Haggle and Hutch who are litter brothers to Cairnlea Kenny.
And Koroit trainer Robert Walsh has Ruby’s Willow, I’m A Princess and Ruby’s Cheekstar – from an April 2015 litter of 12 by Cape Hawke x Jamaican Ruby – engaged in heats of a maiden 512 metre series.
Perfect age for the classic is the Nicole Stanley trained Miss Pineapple, whelped in January 2015 and another one of the “Bling” breed, being by Bit Chili x Classy Bling.
Miss Pineapple, who won her first two starts at Warrnambool, will have her first run at Tara Raceway tomorrow when she jumps from box five in the Gambier Vets Stake (512 m), the first heat of a grade six series.
LONG WAIT IS OVER
David Peckham reports that Thanks Tubby, now retired from racing for more than 12 months, has finally come on season and is currently in Adelaide to be mated with high profile sire Barcia Bale.
By Superman x Irish Fantasy, Thanks Tubby is the longest-standing record holder of the three distances currently run at Tara Raceway (400 m, 512 m, 600 m).
Her 512 metre record of 29.60 seconds was established on June 1, 2014 when she defeated Rouse Flyer by 8½ lengths.
Thanks Tubby joined Peckham’s Allendale East kennels in March 2014 after having won her maiden at Ipswich in the September prior. All told she raced on 64 occasions for 21 wins and 23 minor placings.
A winner of numerous feature races at Tara Raceway, the black bitch on two occasions strung together four consecutive wins.
Peckham already has pups of the same line on his property with Thanks Tubby’s litter sister Striking Viking, a former 600 metre record holder at Tara Raceway, having whelped three dogs and five bitches to Barcia Bale in May last year.
And the wait is almost over for Cap Abbott as far as his former top staying bitch Manila Express is concerned.
Manila Express, who won 18 races and recorded 24 minor placings for stakemoney close to $34,000, last raced in October 2015 with Abbott reporting this week that the black bitch is heavy in pup to another high profile sire in Cosmic Rumble.
She’s also a nicely-bred bitch, being by Bekim Bale out of Flossy, a lightly-raced sister to the iron dog Stagger.
AWARDS TO BE PRESENTED
The 2016 awards for Leading Trainer and Greyhound of the Year will be presented at Sunday’s Tara Raceway meeting.
Leading Trainer for the second consecutive year is Tracie Price of Compton while Old Jock, trained at Portland by Nicole Stanley for the Jocks Lot Syndicate, won the Greyhound of the Year.
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Portland trainer Nicole Stanley continued on her winning way at Tara Raceway last Sunday with Hay Miss scoring a surprise win in the Laser Electrical Feature Grade Five (512 metres) and Stylish Pursuit successful in a best of day 30.18 seconds in the ClassicBet Stake (512 m).
Hay Miss, who “scraped” into the final on the strength of a fourth placing in a heat the previous week behind Colden Girl, went straight to the front from box seven in Sunday’s $2100 final, eventually holding out Flying Flutter to win by a head in 30.53 seconds.
For Hay Miss, a daughter of Bekim Bale x Miss Stackhouse, the win – at the nice odds of $20 – was her second feature at Tara Raceway after success in the John Reid Memorial last year prior to running second to Lektra Munster in the Winter Classic.
Stylish Pursuit, a litter sister to the Tracie Price trained Flying Flutter, was an odds-on favourite from box one in what looked to be a handy grade five event.
Fresh from a third placing over 515 metres at Sandown Park the week prior, Stylish Pursuit settled in second spot behind Thanks Captain who by the middle stages of the race had opened a fair sort of break and looked some chance of winning his first race in more than three months for trainer David Peckham.
But turning for home, the daughter of Mogambo x Butterfly Bling railed through on Thanks Captain, finishing the better to win by a length, bringing up her third 512 metre win from four starts at Tara Raceway.
With Leading Trainer points compiled on a 4, 2, 1 basis, Stanley has already opened up a commanding break after only three meetings with eight wins and two thirds for a total of 34 points – a lead of 18 over second placed Peter Franklin.
Stylish Pursuit and kennelmate Old Jock will now go around in grade five events tomorrow night over 515 metres at Sandown Park from boxes four and six respectively with the races carrying $5000 in prizemoney to the winner. Nice work if you can get it.
ANOTHER WIN FOR ANOTHER ROUSE
It’s been well documented how Glencoe greyhound Another Rouse took 12 months to win his first race and how his long-suffering owner Jack Casey of Penshurst had, for some inexplicable reason, chosen that day not to attend the Tara Raceway meeting.
In fact, he nearly missed out again when the Barry Shepheard trained son of Cape Hawke x Kirkstall Jane led everywhere but on the post at the previous meeting before going down to Brinza.
That must have been enough for the popular owner who made sure he was on track last Sunday to watch Another Rouse go around in the Trackside Meats Stake for grade six greyhounds.
Handled by Amanda Darmanin, who seemed to be in the thick of things last Sunday, the big black dog once again found the front from box eight, as he had done for her 23 days previously when winning his first race.
And from then on he never really looked like being beaten, finishing two lengths clear of Dustin Drew’s pretty handy type Black Fields in 30.28 seconds, the second fastest time of the day.
Following the win, and in between the congratulatory handshakes and the like – and the rush onto the track for that long awaited photograph – Casey had been heard mentioning the Mount Gambier Cup.
“That’s the race we’ve been setting him for,” he joked. Or was he?
Anyway, Casey will get the chance to further assess Another Rouse on Friday when he once again steps up in grade to take on a smart field of grade five greyhounds from box four in the Allestree Holiday Units Stake (512 m).
And speaking of being in the thick of things last Sunday.
In between winning The Border Watch Stake (400 m) with Gemma Eagle, Allen Williams handled the Val and Col Sims Memorial presentation with aplomb and also flogged off the popular daily double raffle tickets in record time.
Gemma Eagle hadn’t taken anywhere near as long as Another Rouse to win what was a maiden heat – she finished down the line in the final behind Hay Miss.
But that had been back in July of last year and she hadn’t won since when lining up from box four in last Sunday’s grade six event.
On the back of a handy third behind Stout And Story at the previous meeting, the black and white bitch turned in a tidy effort to defeat Cryer’s Sid by 2¾ lengths in 23.45 seconds.
There’s certainly not much wrong with Gemma Eagle’s breeding – her sire, Glen Gallon a former superstar while her dam Keep Looking won 11 races.
In fact, Keep Looking, at the time trained by Williams, defeated Casey’s Rouse Flyer in a heat of the 2012 Mount Gambier Cup before running fifth in the final behind Rich Shiraz.
Gemma Eagle will now line up from box two in a heat of the feature grade five series (400 m) at Sunday’s meeting.
Monday, January 16, 2017
McIvor Neville, a Val and Col Sims Memorial heat winner last week at his first race start, continued on his winning way at Tara Raceway on Sunday afternoon when scoring a hard-fought victory in the final of the 512 metre series for maiden greyhounds.
Away only fairly from box eight, the 34 kilogram red fawn dog kept out of trouble on the first turn and by mid-race had worked into third spot behind Tipping Woody and Jaeda Sienn.
Actually, it had been Jaeda Sienn who led the field out from box four and had set the pace into the back straight before Tipping Woody let loose with a quick burst and opened up what could have well been a race-winning lead.
But turning for home the leader moved out and McIvor Neville warmed to the task as the pair set down to fight out the memorial, Neville doing enough on the line to get the verdict by a neck in a time of 30.64 seconds.
Once again, the Sims family was well-represented on track and the winner’s trainer, Peter Franklin of Moyston, was most appreciative of their continued support of the memorial.
“It’s a terrific thrill to win this race,” he said. “You know, I can still remember coming over to Mount Gambier as a lad for coursing meetings and marvelling at how successful the Sims’ were at this now long-gone form of greyhound racing.”
By US sire Bella Infrared out of Blonde Caviar, McIvor Neville is one of eight members of the litter Franklin is training for Bendigo owner Barry Priest – McIvor Gordon having also won a heat last week while Chuck McIvor opened his winning account at start number two when finishing too strongly to defeat Supreme Times in Sunday’s Gordon Refrigeration Maiden Stake (400 m).
Speaking after the memorial, Franklin said he wasn’t sure as to Priest’s intentions with Blonde Caviar and any future litters.
“She’s probably worth another litter but at the moment she’s enjoying a life of luxury at the Stawell home of my ‘right hand man’ John Gale.”
Sunday’s win continued the trainer’s outstanding feature race strike rate at Tara Raceway after Mojito Mayhem had dominated the cups races last year.
Mojito Mayhem is drawn to race at Warrnambool tomorrow night but Franklin said it was unlikely he would run and that the black dog may well defend his Mount Gambier Cup crown by going into next month’s heats without another race start.
As far as the McIvor greyhounds are concerned, he said he was now looking at the forthcoming Summer Classic with some of the May 2015 whelpings.
Heats of the Summer Classic, a 512 metre Special Event for dogs and bitches whelped on or after January 1, 2015, will be run on Friday, February 3 with the $3000 final on Sunday, February 12.
“They aren’t very old and I don’t want to push them too hard but they only get one chance at these types of events. After all, they will be running against dogs pretty well their own age and of the same experience,” said Franklin who was runner-up to Cryer’s Ricky with Future Past in the 2014 Summer Classic.
Charlton trainer Kevin Ashton went close in the memorial with Tipping Woody, a lightly-raced son of Stagger, who raced on 137 occasions for 64 wins, out of Sandown Park winner Hippy Chic while Monty and Jen Wilson’s Jaeda Sienn continued her consistent form over 512 metres with a 3¼ length third.
SEARCHING FOR A WINNER
A late night internet search indirectly came up with Master Tron, a quick Masters winner over 400 metres at Tara Raceway on Sunday.
And it was a win that came purely by chance as the 36 kilogram fawn dog had been drawn as a reserve and only gained a run when Lil Arthur was scratched due to ineligibility.
An internet search on a greyhound site by local owner and trainer Amanda Darmanin had come up with a giveaway from NSW that she thought could be suitable for her and fellow local trainer Ralph Patzel to race in Mount Gambier.
But after several phone calls there were two giveaways and then three – the third one being a dog called Master Tron, a son of Dyna Tron x Katie Racoon who had commenced his racing career in Victoria before moving to NSW.
Master Tron had won eight races – including city track wins at The Meadows and Wentworth Park – but by the time he hit Mount Gambier it had been a fair while since he had won a race.
For all that, though, the April 2013 whelping looked totally out of place in the veterans’ race after finding the front at the 277 metre boxes before careering away to a 7½ length win in 23.11 seconds – a time that would do any fast-class sprinter proud.
And while Master Tron had been well supported, the same couldn’t be said for Supreme Deal, winner of the Metal Worx Mixed Stake (512 m) and the second leg of a double for Patzel.
Jumping from box seven at $40, Supreme Deal was last early but found the rails going into the back, quickly making up ground and railing through on Cryer’s Fred before ultimately holding out Homer to win by 1¾ lengths in 30.58 seconds.
By Where’s Pedro x Supreme Vision, Supreme Deal’s win was his fourth for Patzel and fellow owners Darmanin, Bob White and Darryl Patzel with Sunday’s success coming at his second start back after an elbow operation had seen the fawn dog off the scene since the middle of November.
According to Darmanin, Sunday’s double had been Patzel’s first since litter sisters Wattaira and Scullira had been successful on August 3, 2012.
Thursday, January 12, 2017
While Tracie Price, of Compton, scored a comfortable win in the 2016 Mount Gambier Leading Trainer award, it was also a good year for several other trainers who finished in the top 10.
In what was another outstanding year, Price led in 78 winners which included seven doubles, 10 trebles and two bags of four winners – Real Moment his star performer with 11 wins prior to being retired in October.
Portland trainer Nicole Stanley, off to a flying start at Tara Raceway in 2017 with six wins after only two meetings, was runner-up to Price after a best-ever year saw her lead in 66 winners with Old Jock contributing 10 of those and picking up the 2016 Greyhound of the Year.
Dean Fennell, of Glencoe, involved at the Lake Terrace East track since its opening back in 1997, also enjoyed his best year with 28 winners, as did Glenroy trainer Richard Clayfield – whose involvement goes back even further.
Clayfield’s 31 winners included 13 by Glenville Jester, the track’s most successful dog during 2016 from a win point of view.
SA-BRED RACES FOR TARA RACEWAY
The Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club has programmed grade five SA-bred races over 400 metres and 512 metres for its Sunday, February 19 meeting.
SA-bred grade six greyhounds will also be eligible for these events but will have to be specifically nominated.
Greyhound Racing SA promotes SA-bred greyhounds through the running of restricted races, bonus payments for winners of all races and last year announced the introduction of a re-vamped SA-bred bonus for maiden winners.
Currently, SA maiden winners receive a $175 bonus but commencing from July 1, 2017 GRSA is looking to increase this bonus to $1000 ($500 breeder, $500 owner).
SA-bred greyhounds generally make up something like 25 per cent of the fields at Tara Raceway’s weekly meetings.
BOOST FOR CUP CONSOLATION
In a break from tradition, there will be only one consolation conducted this year for runners failing to reach the final of the $10,000 ClassicBet Mount Gambier Cup (512 metres), heats of which will be run on Sunday, February 26.
However, the consolation will carry $2000 prizemoney and is sure to attract a pretty fair line-up of unlucky runners from the heats.
Complementing the cup will be the $2000 Produce Store Feature Maiden (512 m), the $2000 Blue Lake Grade 5 (600 m) and the $1500 Formula 400 Open (400 m), heats of which will be run on Friday, February 24.
All cup runners will be auctioned at the traditional Calcutta, to be held at Tara Raceway on Saturday, February 25, commencing at 6.30 p.m. with a schnitzel or fish meal.
Kevin “KD” Douglas will ensure the night runs smoothly while entertainment will be provided by Bernie Rogers.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Ask Glenroy greyhound trainer Richard Clayfield the secret to Glenville Jester’s amazing turnaround in form over the past two months and, really, he’s got no idea.
But Team Clayfield (Richard and brother Kevin) are certainly not complaining. Nor fellow part-owner Dale Lewis who would probably be the first to admit that at one stage of the black dog’s 60-start career he would have gladly written him off.
Bred by Richard Clayfield among the grapevines on the outskirts of the Coonawarra, Glenville Jester is by Vapour Whirl out of Glenville Maggie, a bitch who won the 2011 Anniversary Cup for the team at Tara Raceway.
Say what you like about Pathway Racing – low grade races designed to keep out of form greyhounds in the system – but Clayfield believes it was a Pathway race over 512 metres back on November 9 that could have turned the black dog’s fortunes around.
“You have to be going pretty bad to be eligible for a Pathway race and believe me, he was,” Clayfield said this week. “Maybe it was less pressure, I don’t know, but on that day he won by eight lengths in a pretty handy 30.21 seconds – way under the Pathway time standard.”
A fortnight later Glenville Jester won the time-honoured Newman McDonnell Memorial and by the end of the year he had also defeated the 2016 Mount Gambier Greyhound of the Year Old Jock to win the Christmas Cup.
So in the space of seven weeks leading up to the end of the year the born-again greyhound had been around seven times for six wins and a second.
The form has now continued on into the new year with a second to Old Jock before a dashing win over Marcling in last Friday’s Rock’s Retreat Mixed Stake.
Marcling, purchased late last year by Serviceton couple Valerie and David Brodhurst, had opened his Mount Gambier winning account over consistent chaser Penny Eagle at the final meeting for 2016.
And the black dog looked hell-bent on making it two wins in a row when opening up a big break over Glenville Jester down the back straight in last week’s 512 metre event.
But the Jester found plenty in the home straight, finishing too strongly for a half-length win in a personal best 29.96 seconds, despite being undecided at one stage whether to take the inside or outside running.
Clayfield’s one of those “one week at a time” blokes although he’s well aware that the Mount Gambier Cup – a race that has eluded him since its first running in 1981 – is fast approaching.
“I’ll just keep racing him on a weekly basis and hope that he’s still performing well at the end of February for the cup heats.”
Glenville Jester and Marcling will clash again in Sunday’s Metal Worx Mixed Stake (512 m) at Tara Raceway with the pair jumping from boxes three and six respectively.
PLENTY OF INTEREST IN FEATURE FINALS
An outstanding Val and Col Sims Memorial maiden final (512 m) and a top Laser Electrical Feature Grade Five final (512 m) will be a couple of highlights of Sunday’s meeting at Tara Raceway.
With the three Sims heat winners – McIvor Neville, McIvor Gordon and Big Rough – all successful at their first starts it’s to be expected that they will be further improved.
The Brian Weis trained Big Rough ran the fastest of the three heats from the one and has drawn the same box in the final.
McIvor Gordon, although running the slowest of the three heats, was very slowly away and didn’t have a lot of luck in running. He could be worth keeping an eye on from box three.
Trained by Peter Franklin, McIvor Neville and McIvor Gordon are litter brothers, being by the boom US sire Bella Infrared.
Colden Girl and Carry On Elvis, trained by Bea Bryant of Heathmere, won the two heats of the Laser Electrical in impressive style but this is a really tough race.
Blitz And Bolt has drawn box one and there wasn’t much wrong with his 2¼ length third behind Colden Girl and Digger Two in a personal time of 30.22 seconds.
Owners Connie Miller and David Peckham, of Allendale East, will now be hoping for another forward showing with the January 2015 whelping in the lead-up to next month’s Summer Classic.
Ray Drew’s Digger Two hasn’t won since last October at Tara Raceway but he ran home strongly to go down by only 1½ lengths to Colden Girl in a winning time of 30.06 seconds.
And if the Allen Williams trained Penny Eagle can find a forward spot early from box six then she’s sure to trouble the leaders with her home straight finishing burst.
Monday, January 9, 2017
Peter Franklin wasn’t the only trainer to land a running double with littermates at Tara Raceway last Friday.
On a day of doubles, Portland trainer Robert Halliday was successful in the JB Irrigation Stake (512 metres) with Brinza and followed up in the next race with Odd Boots in the ClassicBet Stake (600 m).
Also, Heathmere owner-trainer Bea Bryant won the two Laser Electrical Feature Grade Five heats (512 m) with Colden Girl and Carry On Elvis.
And Glenroy trainer Richard Clayfield led in two winners – although unrelated – in the form of Glenville Jester in the Rock’s Retreat Mixed Stake (512 m) and Slipper’s Shadow in The Border Watch Mixed Stake (400 m).
Brinza, by Cosmic Rumble out of Guru Doll, a city-winning bitch who raced on only 14 occasions, chased Another Rouse for much of the journey before closing late for a three-quarters of a length win in 30.36 seconds.
While Odd Boots continued his good middle-distance form at Tara Raceway when making it three wins from five starts over 600 metres in 0-4 wins non penalty event.
The white dog was always going to be hard to beat after finding the front from box two and that’s the way the raced panned out, never looking like being run down when defeating Spotted Gunn by 4¾ lengths in a personal best time of 35.44 seconds.
Meanwhile, at the finish-line fence, two young racegoers taking a keen interest in Brinza and Odd Boots were sisters Ella, 11, and Jenna, 10, who obviously enjoyed the wins of their grandfather’s greyhounds.
Colden Girl, a daughter of Farmor Las Vegas and The Meadows 600 metre winner Soul Calibur, opened her winning account over 512 metres after quickly finding the front from box four and leading all the way in 30.06 seconds.
This was a good race with Digger Two, Blitz And Bolt and Hay Miss not being beaten far and also through to the final.
Carry On Elvis made it three wins from five starts over the distance when chasing Jasmine Lilly until well into the home straight before pulling out all stops to grab a three-quarter length victory over that greyhound in a personal best 30.14 seconds.
Sunday’s final, which will complement the Val and Cols Sims Memorial, also includes Penny Eagle, who worked home well for third, and Bushman’s Shadow.
Joining Bea and Roger Bryant to celebrate the wins of Colden Girl and Carry On Elvis was Darwin businessman Russell Finck.
Last Friday was his first time at the Lake Terrace East venue although he still has fond memories of the old track at Glenburnie where back in 1987 he was a part-owner of the Mount Gambier Cup winner Durafi, trained by Connie Miller.
Sunday, January 8, 2017
The three heats of last Friday’s Val and Col Sims Maiden Memorial (512 metres) at Tara Raceway were dominated by greyhounds having their first race starts.
Peter Franklin, who had made the 2½-hour trip over to Mount Gambier from Moyston in Victoria the previous Saturday to trial, was rewarded for his efforts when litter brothers McIvor Neville and McIvor Gordon won the first two heats while Big Rough took the time honours for Portland trainer Brian Weis.
McIvor Neville, a 34½-kilogram son of US sire Bella Infrared and Blonde Caviar (Where’s Pedro x Lemon Cruiser), was only fairly away from box four but handled himself well to find third spot down the back behind the tearaway leader Judge Jedd and Money Monster.
And turning for home the fawn dog loomed large as he made his run out wide, finishing too strongly to defeat the early leader by 1¾ lengths in 30.63 seconds with a further head back to Flying Stubbsy who finished the race off nicely.
The litter’s first win was a pleasing result for Bendigo owner Barry Priest and Franklin who had won nine races and recorded 17 minor placings for prizemoney of more than $20,000 with Blonde Caviar in an 18-month period during 2013-14.
Whelped in May 2015, the litter was whelped and reared by Franklin who was the first to admit that the early stages of their subsequent education had been nothing special.
“I reckon it’s fair to say that they were slow learners,” he said. “But they seem to be getting better with each run and it goes without saying that it’s always a great thrill to win races with greyhounds that you have bred.”
October 2014 whelping Judge Jedd, having his seventh race start, gave plenty of cheek out in front after jumping well from box two before running second for Edenhope trainer Cap Abbott.
By Cosmic Chief, the black dog is out of White Butterfly who retired a maiden after running 11 minor placings from 19 starts at Horsham and Warrnambool for Mumbunnar trainer Monty Wilson.
However, there’s plenty of winning form around her line including litter brother New Tibur who won 11 races, including four on the trot at Sandown Park, for prizemoney of almost $80,000.
In the second heat, McIvor Gordon looked only a remote hope after making a real mess of the start from box four and then running wide on the first turn.
And even though making up ground down the back straight it did appear as though local trainer Willie Vossen’s rank outsider Cee Jay’s Heart was set to cause a boilover when hitting the front turning for home.
But in a desperately tight three-way go, McIvor Gordon stormed home down the outside to grab the verdict by a half head over Wilson’s Jaeda Sienn – a litter sister to Judge Jedd – who finished hard on the rails while Cee Jay’s Heart was a further head back in 31.02 seconds.
While Big Rough had never run over 512 metres coming into the memorial, connections never had any real concerns as the February 2015 whelping finished heat three off in strong fashion.
Away well from box one, Big Rough matched motors until the home turn with eventual third placegetter Tipping Woody before running away to a 2½ length win over Gee She Roks in 30.55 seconds.
By Lochinvar Marlow x Bogie Dawn, the winner was one of two pups selected at three months of age by Mount Gambier owners Heather and Noel Perry from a litter whelped by Andrea Gurry of Nhill.
Weis initially reared the pups – the other one is now named Ms Genius who made her debut at Warrnambool on Saturday night – before the pair found their way to Allan Holmes at Moorak prior to being educated and pre-trained by Tom Dailly of Corio.
“Tom reckoned they weren’t up to Melbourne city standard so Brian was happy to have a go with them,” Noel Perry said.
“We were delighted with the win, especially as it was the first time he’d run over 512 metres. It looks like there will be quite a bit of improvement to come out of Friday’s heats so it should be a terrific final on Sunday.”
By Cape Hawke, Gee She Roks, who ran a nice race for Allendale East trainer David Peckham to register her third successive second placing, is out of Freestyle Lass, another one to be retired a maiden but with plenty of winning form around her.
Thursday, January 5, 2017
The third running of the Summer Classic will kick off a big month of racing in February at Tara Raceway.
The classic is an age-restricted series for all greyhounds whelped on or after January 1, 2015 with heats to be run on Friday, February 3 and the final on Sunday, February 12.
The concept was re-introduced by the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club back in 2014, commencing with the Winter Classic which catered for greyhounds that had been whelped in the second half of the year two years prior.
It’s probably fair to say that the age-restricted concept at Tara Raceway is yet to be fully embraced by owners and trainers although one can only wonder why as greyhounds get but one crack at these types of events.
And after all, the 512 metre series is non-penalty, the heats carry open prizemoney and the final is worth a total of $3000.
For all that, though, the Summer Classic, first run in 2015, has unearthed some handy types in the two years that it has been conducted.
The inaugural event had a touch of irony about it inasmuch that the Peter Franklin trained Mojito Mayhem had been scratched from the final and replaced in box four by Tom Cryer’s Cryer’s Ricky who came in off the bench after running fourth behind Mendes in his heat.
Cryer’s Ricky had enjoyed little luck in his heat but come the final he was quickly away, found the front going out of the first turn and then defied Mojito Mayhem’s brother Future Past – also trained by Franklin – to run him down, eventually winning by four lengths in a quick 29.96 seconds.
Cryer’s Ricky, who would go on and win 22 races, still holds the 400 metre Tara Raceway record at 22.78 seconds, a time recorded 12 months after his classic success.
Future Past later in the year represented Mount Gambier in the SA Country Cup at Gawler while Summer Classic fourth placegetter Lots Of Yap a few weeks later won the Mount Gambier Cup – also as a reserve.
Mendes, who ran fifth in the final as a short-priced favourite, retired after winning 19 races and late last year whelped a litter of two bitches to High Earner.
Last year saw the Tony Hinrichsen owned, Lisa Rasmussen trained Menzel Boys run right up to his Adelaide form when railing through on Rowchester Star down the back and then holding out Cairnlea Lewis to win the classic in 30.01 seconds.
Menzel Boys continues to race well, having won his past two starts at Gawler and Strathalbyn, while Cairnlea Lewis, now based in Victoria, has won 10 races.
The ClassicBet Mount Gambier Cup carnival will kick off later in the month with heats of supporting events on Friday, February 24 and the cup heats on Sunday, February 26. Ensuring a big weekend will be the Cup Calcutta evening which will be conducted at Tara Raceway on the Saturday.
SUCCESS FOR JOCK’S YOUNG BROTHER
Usain Insane, a younger brother to 2016 Greyhound of the Year Old Jock, opened his winning account at Warrnambool on Tuesday.
Owned by Terry Payne and trained at Allendale East by David Peckham, the February 2015 son of Bekim Bale x Swift Blaze won at his second race start when running 22.54 seconds over 390 metres.
The win came a couple of days after Old Jock, at his 100th start, was one of five winners for Portland trainer Nicole Stanley at Tara Raceway.
Usain Insane will now line up again over 390 metres at Warrnambool tomorrow while Old Jock is engaged in a 595 metre event at Sandown Park on Sunday.
Wednesday, January 4, 2017
Three heats of the time-honoured Val and Col Sims Memorial – run over 512 metres for maiden greyhounds – will highlight Friday’s meeting at Tara Raceway.
And the series will see some well-bred youngsters step out on to the racetrack for the first time.
Portland owner-trainer Robert Halliday has the April 2015 whelping Hutch engaged in the first heat, although the son of Premier Fantasy and Cairnlea Ellie has been afforded no favours with a box six to kick off his racing career.
But Hutch lacks for nothing when it comes to breeding with Cairnlea Ellie, raced by the late Peter Hubbard, winning 19 races and more than $50,000 in stakemoney.
By Mogambo x Della Bale, Cairnlea Ellie actually won her last race at Tara Raceway in September 2014 before being retired due to injury.
Halliday will now be hoping for a repeat of Monday night at Angle Park where litter brother Cairnlea Kenny, trained at Lewiston by Petar Jovanovic for Jan Hubbard, won on debut over 515 metres.
Jumping from box four in the same heat is McIvor Neville, raced by the formidable team of Barry Priest and Peter Franklin.
The pair also raced McIvor Neville’s dam, Blonde Caviar, a daughter of Where’s Pedro and Lemon Cruiser, who won nine races and $20,000 in stakes including wins over 600 metres and 570 metres at The Meadows and Horsham.
Whelped in May 2015, Nev is by the US sire Bella Infrared who was described as a “once in a generation” greyhound, dominating America’s top track, Southland, where he recorded 71 wins from 100 starts, including 19 in succession.
Priest and Franklin also didn’t fare too well at box draw time with litter brother McIvor Gordon drawing box four in heat two and Chuck McIvor to jump from the six in the final heat.
Portland trainer Brian Weis is not complaining though after his first starter Big Rough drew box one in the third heat.
Whelped in February 2015, the black dog is raced by local couple Noel and Heather Perry.
By Lochinvar Marlow, Big Rough is out of Albion Park distance winner Bogie Dawn (High Earner x Bogie Skye) who won 13 races, and $40,000 in stakemoney before rounding off her career with two wins at Angle Park.
The long-running Sims feature maiden series switched to a memorial in 2013 when it was won by the Cap Abbott trained Arbour Darby before being followed by Benara Cosmic (Tracie Price), Andy Jay (Toni Jones) and Rowchester Star (Nicole Stanley) last year.
Meanwhile, two heats of the Laser Electrical Feature Grade Five (512 m) will complement the Sims Memorial.
In the first heat, Nifty Lenehan’s Moth Attack was an impressive grade six final winner last Sunday and looks well placed in box one to make the step up in grade while Ray Drew will be hoping box seven runner Digger Two can recapture the form that saw him run 30.11 seconds at Tara Raceway back in October.
There’ll be plenty of interest in the second heat with trainer Tracie Price stepping box six runner Flying Flutter up to grade five company after an outstanding maiden 512 metre win in 30.03 seconds at last Sunday’s meeting.
And it will be interesting to see whether the ultra-consistent David Williams trained Penny Eagle can break through for a well-deserved win from box four after three consecutive seconds.
Wednesday, January 4, 2017
Scot’s Dunker turned her Tara Raceway form around for Lake Bolac greyhound trainer Kevin Breen at last Sunday’s meeting when scoring an impressive win in the Williams Crane Hire Stake.
The black bitch, who had been unplaced at her only three starts at the local track last year, was away quickly from box one in the Open 400 metre event and was never headed after initially holding out hot favourite Slipper’s Chance.
Scot’s Dunker, a winner in late November over 425 metres at Bendigo from the same box, skipped around Tara Raceway in a slick 23.33 seconds when defeating Gentle Moment by 2¾ lengths.
The win was Breen’s first at the local track since Financial Bonus defeated Evening In Paris in December 2015.
By Adelaide Cup winner Kilty Lad out of the unraced Taz’s Girl, Scot’s Dunker boasts beautiful breeding with her dam being by Jones Junior x Glamorous.
Glamorous, who is by Spiral Nikita x Leprechaun Yap, is also the dam of successful sire Magic Sprite.
Scot’s Dunker is raced by the Mark Valentine-managed 16-member One Spot Syndicate, all of whom are involved in a variety of positions at the Ballarat Minerdome basketball sports stadium.
Breen said it had been only by pure chance that last Sunday’s winner had found her way into his kennels.
“Prior to her racing, her previous trainer had been involved in a non-life threatening accident but was unable to continue with her.
“She’s certainly been a handy pick-up and given the One Spot team plenty of fun with six wins last year at Ballarat, Geelong and Bendigo after success on debut at Warrnambool in February.”