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

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.


News

Youngsters impress on debut at Tara Raceway

Thursday, September 1, 2016

The debut of 18-month-old Azumi Swift at Tara Raceway last Friday certainly would have pleased Worrolong greyhound trainer Lee Bartholomew.

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Elysia Bartholomew pictured with Azumi Swift after her impressive first-up second at Tara Raceway last Friday.

Whelped on the last day of February, 2015, the solidly built 29 kilogram daughter of Cosmic Chief and Azumi Touch was a clear last from box seven in the ClassicBet Open Maiden heat (400 metres) and still had plenty of work to do as Louis Mini Girl led the field down the back straight.

But despite racing greenly – let’s face it, how many times would she have run in a full field – Azumi Swift worked home solidly, eventually going down by 4¼ lengths to Saint Flynn in 23.55 seconds.

In what promises to be a further learning curve, the black bitch will now jump from box four in the ClassicBet Open Maiden final on Sunday.

Azumi Swift is the first of Azumi Touch’s offspring to hit the track for Bartholomew and her husband Steve who also bred the litter.

The couple also raced Azumi Touch, a daughter of Cosmic Rumble and Elite Touch, between 2012 and 2014 when she won 15 races over 400 metres at Tara Raceway and a 388 metre sprint at Angle Park by 9¼ lengths.

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Elysia pictured in May 2014 with Azumi Touch.

And along the way they must have seen something they liked as far as Azumi Swift’s litter was concerned because in May this year Azumi Touch underwent frozen semen artificial insemination (FSAI) at Gambier Vets.

The first greyhound FSAI to be performed locally by Greyhounds Australasia-accredited Rebel Skirving, Azumi Touch subsequently whelped five dogs and four bitches by Dyna Tron on July 20.

Also having her first run at Tara Raceway last Friday was Elusive Linda which is four days younger than Azumi Swift.

Owned by Graham Ganderton and Paul White, the black bitch is trained at Sandford by Brad Mitchem who was more than happy with Elusive Linda’s effort after having copped plenty of trouble at her first race start only two days earlier over 388 metres at Angle Park.

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Brad and Jordan Mitchem with Elusive Linda after last Friday’s maiden win at Tara Raceway.

The quick back-up obviously didn’t worry her too much as she quickly found the front from box three in a heat of Metal Worx Open Maiden (512 m) before digging deep in the home straight to hold out Goldie’s Run.

In Mitchem’s kennels for three months after breaking-in well, Elusive Linda will now jump from box one in Sunday’s Metal Worx Open Maiden final.

By Barcia Bale, she is out of Quick To Go which is also now at Sandford with a view to further breeding.

Quick To Go, by Collision out of My Hot Fancy, raced on only five occasions, winning a semi-final of the 2014 Group 3 Nowra Puppy Classic before being retired after finishing unplaced in the final.


Jock and Jack take lead into Iron Dog second round

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Outstanding 600 metre wins by Old Jock and Cryer’s Jack in last Sunday’s first round of the Berringa Park Iron Dog at Tara Raceway has set the scene for an interesting second round over 400 metres on Sunday afternoon.

For rising four-year-old Old Jock the win was his second in succession over the middle-distance at Tara Raceway and he now looks well placed to grab a spot in the final on Friday, September 9.

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Old Jock was an impressive winner of the Iron Dog first heat over 600 metres at Tara Raceway last Sunday.

The leading point scorers from the first two rounds will qualify for the final and with eight points already accumulated from last Sunday’s win, Old Jock won’t need to collect too many points in Sunday’s second round.

The only drawback is that he’s never raced over the tricky 400 metres at Tara Raceway and it’s almost two years since he last ran over any distance comparable to that of Sunday. And box five is not likely to help either.

Owned by the Jock Middleton-managed Jocks Lot Syndicate and trained at Portland by Nicole Stanley, the well-credentialled son of Bekim Bale and Swift Blaze has now raced on 84 occasions for 12 wins and 30 minor placings for prizemoney of almost $20,000.

In the likelihood of a berth in the 512 metre final, Old Jock will be well suited, having defeated King Size Shambi in a quick 29.75 seconds to reach the final of this year’s Mount Gambier Cup.

Rising five-year-old Dee Tee showed early pace in last Sunday’s first round before Old Jock took over the running going into the back straight.

Trained by Gary Lane, Dee Tee, which went into last year’s Iron Dog final as the leading qualifier, will take on Old Jock again on Sunday but looks better served over 400 metres and from box seven.

Stampy Longnose is another one which has never run over 400 metres but he’s racing well for in-form trainer Dean Fennell and from box eight is likely to be right in the mix as should Ralph Patzel’s box four runner Supreme Deal which is a 400 metre winner.

Looking at the first heat, Cryer’s Jack also collected eight points for last week’s all the way 600 metre success – his third consecutive win at Tara Raceway.

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Margaret Cryer with Cryer’s Jack, winner of the second Iron Dog 600 metre heat in a best of day 35.40 seconds.

For so long in the shadow of litter brothers Cryer’s Fred and Cryer’s Ricky, the Tom Cryer trained Cryer’s Jack has never been in better form and with a 400 metre personal best of 23.29 seconds and box three on Sunday he looks to be another likely finalist.

But Cryer will be hoping for a smoother entry into the final than last year when Cryer’s Jack picked up seven points in the first round, then made a real mess of the 400 metre second round before scrambling into the final on a countback with nine points.

The Patzel trained Roarsome is also a winner over 400 metres and from box two looks a good chance of significantly boosting her seven points from the first round although any one of the seven runners could probably win without really surprising.

The Iron Dog points after round one are as follows: 8 Old Jock, Cryer’s Jack; 7 Roarsome, Julie’s Love; 6 Glenville Jester, Supreme Deal; 5 Kirsty’s Me Mum, Dark Nemesis; 4 Dee Tee, Stampy Longnose; 3 Jasmine Lilly, Andy Jay; 2 Noaki Phoenix; 1 Jen Shen.

 

BUSY DAY FOR FENNELL’S KENNELS

With three winners at last weekend’s two meetings, Glencoe trainer Dean Fennell will now be hoping for success in three finals at Tara Raceway on Sunday.

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Gentle Moment, which has drawn box three in Sunday’s Produce Store grade 5 final, pictured after his smart heat win with John Hawker, Mo Canala, Dean Fennell and Kerry Hawker.

Whatta Moment and Tank Tank will line up from boxes three and six respectively in the Gambier Vets Grade Five final (400 m) with both greyhounds showing their first glimpse of form since May.

The Produce Store Grade Five final (512 m) looks to be an interesting race with Fennell’s Gentle Moment and the Ian Bibby trained Yucatan winning the heats in virtually the same time.

And for Gentle Moment’s part-owner, Kerry Hawker – an employee of hardware chain Masters – the week ended much better than it began following the announcement of Masters closure later this year.

Gentle Moment, which has drawn box three in Sunday’s final, led all the way in his heat, clocking 30.55 seconds much to the delight of the Moorak-based Hawker, and fellow part-owner Michael Robinson.

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Owner-trainer Robert Halliday with Homer which will take on a smart field from box five in Sunday’s Allestree Holiday Units Mixed Stake (512 m).

Fennell also has Black Peer jumping from box eight in the Pathway final (400 m) while Karagiozis and Ari will tackle a pretty handy Allestree Holiday Units Mixed Stake (512 m) from boxes three and four respectively.

Karagiozis and Ari are raced by Nick Tzaferis with Ari looking quite good last Sunday when leading all the way in the winningformula.net.au Stake (512 m) in a best of day 30.25 seconds.

Jumping from box five on Sunday is Homer which defeated Karagiozis by five lengths in a best of day 30.43 seconds at last Friday’s meeting.

Trained by Robert Halliday, the son of Fear Zafonic and Flawless Tears copped a fair check on the first turn but continued to keep coming, pleasing his trainer with his racing pattern and the manner in which he went to the line.


Well done to Worm Burner

Monday, August 29, 2016

From an SA point of view, so far we haven’t seen too much about Worm Burner’s outstanding effort at Angle Park on Saturday night when he was successful in the National Sprint Championship. Anyway, to the Butcher family and Worm Burner, congratulations from the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club.

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Groundhog Day at Tara Raceway

Allendale East trainer Connie Miller, of the Bourne Racing Kennels, reckoned it felt like Groundhog Day at Tara Raceway on Sunday afternoon.

This was after the running of the Greyhound-Data.com Stake (400 m) when Bushman’s Faith took the lead from Vee Bee Mee turning for home and then held out kennelmate Lady Vixyma to win by 2¼ lengths in 23.48 seconds.

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Connie Miller and John Little with Bushman’s Faith which defeated Lady Vixyma at Friday and Sunday’s meetings in the same time of 23.48 seconds.

A couple of days earlier, Bushman’s Faith, having his first start at Tara Raceway, had assumed control over Lady Vixyma down the back straight before going on to a four length win over that greyhound in the Berringa Park Stake (400 m), also in 23.48 seconds.

So the two grade six wins over the weekend saw Bushman’s Faith “beat the grader”, something that hasn’t been achieved all that often since the monthly double meetings were introduced at Tara Raceway.

“The only reason I backed him up was because he’s not SA-bred and as such is allowed only one grade six win at the track,” Miller said.

Owned in WA by John Turner, the June 2014 black dog is NSW-bred, being by Magic Sprite out of NSW city-winning stayer Cin Cin Shiraz.

It’s been a quick return for Miller with Bushman’s Faith joining the kennels only a fortnight ago prior to racing in Victoria on 15 occasions for a maiden win at Horsham.

The wins over the weekend continued the success Bourne Racing Kennels has had with Turner who previously owned Fred Of Lidsdale which has won eight short-course races at Tara Raceway for co-trainer David Peckham.

And it wasn’t a bad weekend either for Peckham who was successful with Raz’s Girl at Friday’s meeting and Thanks Captain on Sunday.

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The David Peckham trained Thanks Captain resumed after a 128 day break to register a smart win in a grade five 400 metre heat.

Having her fifth Tara Raceway start, Raz’s Girl led all the way in the Trackside Meats Stake which was a heat of the maiden 400 metre series, the final of which will be run next Sunday along with all other finals emanating from the weekend’s heats.

By Kinloch Brae, Raz’s Girl is out of Cawbourne Raz which won her six races in NSW at the Gardens.

The 25½ kilogram black bitch was purchased mid-year from Newcastle by Ross Schurgott, together with Steve Maguire, Garry Siney, Steve Mason, Artie Slee, Grant Sterzl and Peckham for $1400.

And Schurgott was also among the winners again on Sunday when Thanks Captain took over the running from Penny Blossom off the back in the Gordon Refrigeration Stake (400 m) which was a heat of a grade five series.

Better known as the “reluctant racer” due to his reluctance sometimes to even want to turn up at the track let alone race, Thanks Captain was resuming after a 128 day break due to injury and was on his best behaviour when finishing strongly to defeat Whatta Moment by 2¾ lengths in 23.41 seconds.

 

JOCK AND JACK TAKE THE POINTS

The Nicole Stanley’s Old Jock and the Tom Cryer trained Cryer’s Jack will head into the 400 metre second round of the Berringa Park Iron Dog as the leading point scorers after impressive 600 metre wins on Sunday.

The top eight point scorers from the first two rounds will then contest the 512 metre final on Friday, September 9.

Points after round 1: 8 Old Jock, Cryer’s Jack; 7 Roarsome, Julie’s Love; 6 Glenville Jester, Supreme Deal; 5 Kirsty’s Me Mum, Dark Nemesis; 4 Dee Tee, Stampy Longnose; 3 Jasmine Lilly, Andy Jay; 2 Noaki Phoenix, Gold Rocker; 1 Jen Shen.


Trainers find the secret

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Secret Mantra is certainly not your average type of Masters greyhound.

Here he was lining up as a four-year-old in the 400 metre Gambier Vets Masters – for grade five dogs that are 3½ years or older – at Tara Raceway on Friday afternoon with only 26 starts to his name.

These races are generally for the likes of Twistex, only three months older than Secret Mantra but going around for a 171st time when contesting Friday’s Klaassens Contractors Mixed Stake (400 m).

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Secret Mantra pictured after his Masters win at Tara Raceway on Friday.

However, being a grade three, Twistex was a fair way off from being eligible for the Masters class. Even further now after leading all the way and bringing up win number 30 and $45,000 in stakemoney for David and Toni Jones of Devon Meadows.

But back to Secret Mantra and his Charlton trainer Kevin Ashton, who landed his fourth Tara Raceway win this month, after the son of Mantra Lad and Dadda Poppa scored a comfortable win against the veterans in what turned out to be a best of day 23.34 seconds.

And according to Ashton, the secret to the white and fawn dog is to run him only at Tara Raceway, hence his limited number of starts.

“The simple fact is that he just won’t go on any other track,” he said. “I’m putting it down to the finish-on-lure. He certainly seems to enjoy chasing the big red lure.

“The only trouble is, of course, being four hours away it is not always convenient to get over here which is disappointing because Jan (Neil) and I really enjoy racing in Mount Gambier.”

Secret Mantra has now won three races – two of those being this month.

Another trainer who reckons the finish-on-lure has worked wonders for his greyhound is Robert Walsh of Koroit.

Walsh was over on Friday for the 400 metre maiden heats and landed his first Tara Raceway winner when Saint Flynn, the only greyhound he is currently training, was successful.

Having only his fourth race start, the well-supported brindle dog looked to be in plenty of bother early before bursting from the pack down the back prior to running out a strong 4¼ length winner in 23.55 seconds.

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Saint Flynn scored an impressive win in a heat of the maiden 400 metre series for Robert Walsh of Koroit.

But, as Walsh explained, it hasn’t been all plain sailing for the Peter Byrne-bred March 2014 son of Spring Gun and 13-race winner Real Frosty.

“When he was 12 months old he damaged a shoulder and as a result he spent some months getting over the setback before Peter asked me if I would be interested in having a go with him.

“Probably the best thing I did was to bring him over to Tara Raceway because he had been a little hesitant on other tracks and the finish-on-lure seems to have really brightened him up.”

Prior to Saint Flynn, the last greyhound Walsh had raced locally was Ima Harley which concluded his 86-start career at Tara Raceway on September 25, 2015 at 6½ years of age.

Earlier in the day, Saint Flynn’s litter brother, Saint Fox, put in a big performance for Byrne and Southern Cross trainer Ray Mahony to win the first heat of a maiden 512 metre series.

A short-priced favourite at his past three starts at Tara Raceway, the brindle dog looked like proving a costly conveyance once again after jumping slowly and still well back down the back straight.

But Saint Fox loomed large turning for home and finished too strongly to win by three-quarters of a length in 30.90 seconds.


Iron Dog to test greyhounds’ versatility

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The versatility of 16 greyhounds will be tested over the next three meetings at Tara Raceway when they line up in the annual Iron Dog series which is once again sponsored by Michael Niele of Berringa Park Kennels.

The first round of the three-distance series kicks off with two heats over 600 metres and will be the highlight of Sunday’s 10-event programme.

At the following Sunday’s meeting (September 4) the same greyhounds will race over 400 metres with the eight highest point scorers from the first two rounds then contesting the 512 metre final on Friday, September 9.

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Iron Dog contender Roarsome has won over Tara Raceway’s three distances for owner Erin McNamara and trainer Ralph Patzel.

Roarsome and Dee Tee will line up in the first heat having previously won over Tara Raceway’s current three distances.

By Fear Zafonic out of Ren Shen, Roarsome has been a real revelation for Mount Wallace owner Erin McNamara since joining Ralph Patzel’s Mount Gambier kennels in May.

She’s now won seven races in that time, including a 600 metre win over Kirsty’s Me Mum in 35.37 seconds prior to a strong best of day 512 metre performance last Sunday.

Bushfield trainer Gary Lane intimated several weeks ago that the Iron Dog would probably mark the end of Dee Tee’s racing career.

She was actually retired at the end of November last year before being mated and subsequently failing to conceive before returning to racing in May.

And the daughter of El Grand Senor x Mantra Miss, now a rising five-year-old, showed she still had life in her legs when defeating Old Jock last month over 600 metres in 35.45 seconds prior to running third over the same distance behind Supreme Deal.

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Part-owners Kev Clayfield and Dale Lewis pictured with Glenville Jester.

Lane will now be hoping Dee Tee can go out on a winning note after she went into last year’s Iron Dog final (600 m) as the leading point scorer.

The Nicole Stanley trained Old Jock showed he is ready for the Iron Dog after a solid 600 metre win in the wet last Sunday while runner-up Kirsty’s Me Mum has won over both 512 metres and 600 metres at Tara Raceway for Southern Cross trainer Garry Elliott.

Adding even more interest to the first heat is the Richard Clayfield trained Glenville Jester, also a winner over both 512 metres and 600 metres this year.

Patzel also looks to hold a strong hand in the second heat with Supreme Deal, recent winner of the Eric Lewis Memorial (600 m) and successful at Tara Raceway’s three distances.

An older half-brother to last Sunday’s Winter Classic winner Lektra Munster, Supreme Deal defeated Old Jock in the memorial and at his last start chased home Cryer’s Jack in a 512 metre event.

The son of Where’s Pedro and Supreme Vision is raced by Patzel in partnership with Bob White, Darryl Patzel and Amanda Darmanin who is doing well at the moment in her own right as a trainer.

Cryer’s Jack, another Tara Raceway three-distance winner, is racing well for Tom and Margaret Cryer, having won his past two 512 metre starts.

The son of Spring Gun x Cryer’s Midget has won three 600 metre races and knows what the Iron Dog is all about after reaching last year’s final.

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Calum Blake, sponsor Michael Niele and Aaron Blake with inaugural Iron Dog winner Kiss Me Donkey.

The Berringa Park Iron Dog was first run in 2012 although it wasn’t all that testing back then. With 600 metre racing still to be introduced at Tara Raceway, the three-distance series was run over 400 metres, 512 metres and 400 metres.

Winning the inaugural event was the Aaron Blake trained Kiss Me Donkey which defeated the Brendan Bunworth pair of Ten Doeschate and Tanroddy Trina.

There was no Iron Dog staged in 2013 but the following year Cap Abbott’s former smart stayer Manila Express, originally a reserve, gained a start in the 600 metre final and defeated Sir Lenny, another Bunworth-trained chaser.

And then last year, with the 600 metre final run in driving rain, the Monty Wilson trained front-running Boolite Bruiser and Clayfield’s fast finishing Upset Boy couldn’t be split on the line.

This year’s Berringa Park Iron Dog final will carry $1750 prizemoney with the winner to also receive a K9 Winning Formula Kennel Pack (valued at $170), donated by Peter Bryce of Winning Post Supplies. All Iron Dog rounds are non-penalty.


Smart maiden winner to be put to the test

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

As far as maiden wins are concerned they don’t come much more impressive than that of Cee Righty’s in last Sunday’s JB Irrigation Stake (512 metres) at Tara Raceway.

The fawn dog was in front from box six by the time the field hit the first turn and from then he simply kept extending the lead, eventually winning by 10½ lengths in 30.64 seconds on a rain-affected track.

Only Lektra Peck and Roarsome ran quicker on the day.

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Andy Graham’s Cee Righty will tackle the second heat of a grade 6 series at Tara Raceway on Friday.

Bred, owned and trained at Portland by Andy Graham, Cee Righty is an October 2014 son of Cosmic Chief and Victorian city-winning bitch Cee Anna Rose which raced on only 18 occasions.

Graham also bred Cee Anna Rose (by Bombastic Shiraz) and regards her as the best of his prolific producer Senni Wendy’s stock.

Cee Righty will now line up at Tara Raceway on Friday from box eight in the Produce Store Stake (512 m) which is the second heat of a grade six series.

And Graham is likely to have more idea of where he’s at with his promising pup after the running of what is a pretty fair lower-grade race.

Jumping alongside him will be the Monty Wilson trained Kylan Brae which has little early pace but does finish strongly as demonstrated at Tara Raceway’s August 12 meeting when he came from a long way back to run down Cee Righty in 30.56 seconds – a 512 metre time that held up well on the day.

A son of Kinloch Brae x Sionara Milly, Kylan Brae, whilst unable to overcome the “first run out of a maiden hoodoo” when finishing fifth last Sunday behind Lektra Peck, should be better for the experience.

Cee Righty will run into that same “hoodoo” on Friday but if he can once again find the front then he should be very hard to run down.

Adding further interest to the heat will be the Nicole Stanley trained Hay Miss which has drawn box one and comes into race on the back of some solid form in the Winter Classic.

By Bekim Bale x Miss Stackhouse, Hay Miss ran down Lektra Munster in a heat of the classic before working home well to finish a 1½ length second to the same greyhound in last Sunday’s final.

Local owners Kerry Hawker and Michael Robinson, who picked up Gentle Moment after a handful of starts for $500, will be hoping the son of Spring Gun and Suzy’s Moment can bring up his third win when he jumps from box four in the South Eastern Hotel Stake which is the first heat of the grade six series.

Trained at Glencoe by Dean Fennell, Gentle Moment was successful shortly after being purchased but an accident which necessitated the removal of part of his tail then kept him off the scene for six weeks.

The black dog has obviously taken no harm from the ordeal, since winning again. And while he’s yet to win over 512 metres, three recent minor placings would suggest he’s not far away.

One of the hardest to beat looks to be the Tracie Price trained Port Side which chased Lektra Peck home at last Sunday’s meeting.

 

VETERAN TO GIVE A BIT OF CHEEK

The veterans are back at Tara Raceway on Friday for the Gambier Vets Masters Stake (400 m).

Designed to keep racing greyhounds in the system longer, Masters are non-penalty grade five 400 metre events for dogs 3½ years and upwards with preference given to older dogs.

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Connie Miller and Amy Howard with Bourne Cheeky which has drawn box one in Friday’s Masters event.

Friday’s race includes several in the minimum age bracket including the Barry Shepheard trained Galactic Viper which has drawn box eight and looks well placed in an event of this type.

A winner of $40,000, Galactic Viper is, however, yet to win at eight starts at the track and distance.

Punters invariably have found the Connie Miller trained Bourne Cheeky hard to catch in her 61 start career which has included nine wins – eight over 400 metres – but she does look well drawn in box one.

The November 2012 daughter of Spring Gun x Nicky’s Moment also should appreciate a drop in overall class after having run into Fear The Rascal and Future Past at her past two starts.

Black Barron Lad, trained at Bushfield by Gary Lane, is Friday’s oldest runner at 5½ years.

It’s been almost two years since the black dog last won but he was placed after showing early pace in the June Masters race and wasn’t beaten all that far at his last start at Warrnambool earlier this month.

As an aside, one of the oldest greyhounds going around at the moment is Victorian chaser Soldier Spy which was whelped in November 2010.

The son of Trewly Special and Ice Dancer has been kept in the system mainly by veterans’ races up the straight at Healesville where his past 29 starts there have resulted in 17 wins.


A classic win to the Munster

Monday, August 22, 2016

Toolong greyhound Lektra Munster’s brilliant mid-race burst in Sunday’s Banjo Boy Winter Classic at Tara Raceway set the scene for an impressive win in the $3000 age-restricted final over 512 metres.

A $7.50 chance from box four, he was the least favoured of three littermates contesting the third running of the classic, with Lektra Lucy and Lektra Ash both well fancied at $3 and $3.60 respectively.

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Owner-trainer Phil Lenehan with Lektra Munster after his Banjo Boy Winter Classic win. The $3000 final also carried a service to Group winner Banjo Boy.

Owned and trained by Phil Lenehan, the Munster had shown similar mid-race dash to find the front in a heat at the previous meeting but had been unable to hold out Nicole Stanley’s Hay Miss in the run to the line, eventually going down by a nostril.

In Sunday’s final, though, despite being in traffic and wide on the first turn, once he let loose down the back he was always going to be hard to run down.

Again it was the Portland trained Hay Miss, winner of last month’s John Reid Memorial, doing the chasing after momentarily hitting the front down the back, and while running home well, this time Lektra Munster had 1½ lengths to spare.

Lektra Ash, now based at Tarpeena with David Williams, finished the race off nicely in third spot and will be a more than handy addition to the local ranks while Lektra Lucy, favourite on the strength of an impressive heat win, found trouble going out of the first turn and never really got into the race for Lenehan.

The “Lektra” finalists were also bred at Toolong and are by Fabregas out of Supreme Vision, a winner at The Meadows, Sandown Park and Cannington.

Supreme Vision’s previous litter (by Where’s Pedro) includes former smart Melbourne chaser Lektra Concord, which has since been sold to New Zealand, and Supreme Deal, recent winner of the Eric Lewis Memorial (600 m) for Mount Gambier trainer Ralph Patzel.

The October 2014 Fabregas litter consists of six dogs and three bitches with six having already won.

And it’s been a pretty fair few days for Lenehan and the litter after Lektra Utah was successful at Horsham on Tuesday, Lektra Aly won at Warrnambool on Thursday night before Sunday’s classic success with Lektra Munster and Lektra Peck’s all-the-way win in the ClassicBet Stake (512 m).

The litter and training double continued his good run at Tara Raceway this year and brought up his 24th local win.

While conceding that Lektra Utah is the pick of the litter at this stage, Lenehan said he had been delighted with Lektra Munster’s effort in the Winter Classic.

“I certainly thought he would improve on his heat effort but I was really pleased with his mid-race dash today and it will now be interesting to see how far that takes him.”

With the winner’s time of 30.89 seconds being indicative of the wet conditions, this was certainly a winter classic in the true sense of the word.

 

STAMPING HIS AUTHORITY IN THE WET

While the past two Tara Raceway meetings have been pretty ordinary from a weather point of view, one greyhound that has really adapted to the conditions is Stampy Longnose.

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Catcher Mo Canala and trainer Dean Fennell pictured with Stampy Longnose after his Produce Store Feature Grade 5 win.

By Fabregas out of Lemon Cruiser, Stampy Longnose braved atrocious weather conditions from box eight last meeting in a heat of the Produce Store Feature Grade Five (512 m) when defeating litter sister Smirnoff Lass in a surprisingly quick 30.49 seconds.

And box eight and another heavy track were no deterrent on Sunday when the 35 kilogram black dog found the front going into the back straight and once again held out his litter sister, trained by Tracie Price, to win by 1¾ lengths in 30.66 seconds.

The win was his seventh since being taken over by Glencoe-based Dean Fennell in September last year for first-time owner Jack Davies who races Stampy Longnose in partnership with fellow Millicentites Paul Whitford and Fennell’s son Hayden.

The win also continued a good year for Fennell who has now trained 16 winners and been successful with Ticked Off and Stampy Longnose at the past three meetings.

The monthly Feature Grade Five heats and final events over 512 metres, which are funded by a $10,000 Greyhound Racing SA subsidy, have proven to be popular with owners and trainers.

And one of those trainers is certainly Fennell who said after the race that he believed the first prize of $1415 was probably the most he had ever collected from a single race.

Heats of next month’s Gordon Refrigeration Feature Grade Five (512 m) will be run on Friday, September 9 with the $2100 final on Sunday, September 18.

 

RUNNING DOUBLE

Recently-retired David Brodhurst of Serviceton is another trainer who is having a good year at Tara Raceway.

While working he had been limited to the number of meetings he could take in but with his greyhounds now able to race on a more regular basis he and wife Valerie are reaping the benefits.

Like on Sunday when Miss Murderous and Major Lachy sent the couple home on a happy note after winning the final two races.

Miss Murderous, a $7.50 chance in the Klaassens Contractors Mixed Stake (400 m) led early from box five before being head by Fu Ling Shen but finished too strongly for that greyhound in the run home to score by a length in 23.53 seconds.

Another winner for Fabregas, Miss Murderous is out of former Queensland stayer Tango Tapper and is owned by one-time Tara Raceway caller Chris Buttigieg.

And Major Lachy brought up Brodhurst’s 13th Tara Raceway winner this year when leading all the way in the Berringa Park Mixed Stake (400 m) to defeat Marlow Moment in 23.64 seconds.

Starting at the nice odds of $21, the son of Cape Hawke and Gifted Glory has now won four races since relocating to Serviceton in February this year.


Twistex just keeps on keeping on

Thursday, August 18, 2016

It’s now been almost three years since David and Toni Jones’s Twistex appeared for the first time at Tara Raceway where he finished a close-up second to Explosive Arrow over 400 metres at what was his second race start.

Last Friday, the black dog was back in Mount Gambier for the Klaassens Contractors Mixed Stake (400 m), having raced a further 164 times since that October afternoon back in 2013.

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David Jones pictured at Tara Raceway last Friday with Twistex after his 167th start.

So, with not too many racing greyhounds hitting the 100-start mark, Twistex’s record after race 12 stood at 167 starts for 29 wins and 45 minor placings – a real testament to his tenacity and durability.

By Dyna Lachlan out of Victorian city winner Avery Bale, he’s been at the Jones’s Devon Meadows property since day one.

“We actually whelped the litter for the owners,” David Jones recalled this week. “But it was only by pure chance that we happened to end up with Twistex.

“We had picked out a pup to purchase from the litter but it turned out the owners wanted to keep him so we had to make another choice.”

But the rising 4½-year-old is soon to embark on a different sort of journey.

“We currently have our property on the market and by Christmas we’re hopeful that we’ll be hitting the highway in a motor home and travelling around Australia,” Jones said.

“And yes, Twistex will be making the trip with us.”

 

CONFUSION OVER TRACK RECORD

Unsub Andy’s 600 metre track record at Tara Raceway will continue to be recognised by the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club.

Owned and trained at Southern Cross by Peter Byrne, Unsub Andy lowered Miss Jacovella’s previous record when clocking 35.04 seconds on March 11 this year.

Brazen Bomber

Brazen Bomber defeats Old Jock and Fireball Jack in the Koroit 600 final at Tara Raceway in June. Picture: Todd’s Photographics.

However, confusion has arisen since the running of the Koroit 600 which was conducted on Sunday, June 26 and won by the Jeff Guy trained Brazen Bomber.

Due to a timing malfunction for that race, Brazen Bomber’s winning time was posted as a hand-timed 35.33 seconds.

But Greyhound Racing SA has Brazen Bomber winning the race in a hand-timed 35 seconds and now lists this time on its website and in all official form as the track record.

MGGRC secretary/treasurer Barry Shepheard said this week that he was trying to resolve the issue of the two track records for the same distance with GRSA.

“I’ve been in touch with GRSA stewards in regard to the anomaly but I’m still waiting for an explanation as to where this 35 seconds time actually came from.

“We don’t accept any hand times as track records so as far as we are concerned Unsub Andy’s 35.04 seconds is still the 600 metre track record.”

 

FIRST CITY WIN FOR THE RASCAL

Locally owned and trained fast-class performer Fear The Rascal won his first city race when defeating kennelmate Skatey Perry over 515 metres in a good 29.94 seconds at Angle Park on Monday night.

By Fear Zafonic out of Shannah’s Star, Fear The Rascal has now won 15 races and recorded 16 minor placings from 39 starts for Mingbool breeder-owner Don Nunn and trainer Tracie Price of Compton.

And Price was back at Angle Park for the Wednesday afternoon meeting with boom youngster Blazing Moment which recently won on debut at Tara Raceway.

The 37 kilogram son of Bekim Bale and Lucy’s Moment was slowly away from box six in a grade six 515 metre event but found the front turning into the back straight before running out a 3¾ length winner in a near best of the day 30.15 seconds.


Winter Classic finalist changes hands

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Lektra Ash, the second fastest of the eight qualifiers at Tara Raceway last Friday afternoon, will go into Sunday’s Banjo Boy Winter Classic final (512 metres) in new ownership after being purchased by Team Williams (Allen and David Williams).

The Tarpeena-based father and son team took over the black dog after he had run second to his litter sister Lektra Lucy, owned and trained at Toolong by Phil Lenehan, in the first heat of the age-restricted series.

LEK LUCY LEK ASH

Lektra Lucy defeats her brother Lektra Ash in the first heat of the Banjo Boy Winter Classic at Tara Raceway last Friday. Picture: Todd’s Photographics.

Having only her second race start, and her first at Tara Raceway, the 28 kilogram Lektra Lucy led all the way to defeat her brother – which had moved into second spot down the back straight – by 1½ lengths in 30.39 seconds.

As far as the final goes, Allen Williams will be hoping for a case of third time lucky with Lektra Ash after Dr Danny had run second to Stylish Moment in the inaugural classic in 2014 and Lika Rockstar third behind Cee Me Burst and Houdini Spell last year – both winners being trained by Tracie Price.

Also through to the final from the first heat are the Nicole Stanley trained Ashdene Lass, a winner of two races at the track, and first starter Blitz And Bolt from David Peckham’s Allendale East kennels.

Ashdene Lass worked home reasonably well after showing early pace while Blitz And Bolt had little luck and should be better for the run.

Hay Miss, recent winner of the John Reid Memorial, was an even money favourite from box eight in the second heat but looked to be in a bit of bother as To The Choppar led the field into the back straight.

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Hay Miss, winner of heat two of the Banjo Boy Winter Classic, has drawn box eight again in Sunday’s final. She is pictured with trainer Nicole Stanley.

By mid-race, though, Lektra Munster had opened up a handy break with the Stanley-trained Hay Miss giving chase and eventually running down the leader to score by the narrowest of margins in 30.78 seconds.

The effort of Lektra Munster, a strapping 34 kilogram black dog and having only his second race start, pleased owner-trainer Lenehan who believed the youngster would be further improved by the run.

To The Choppar’s effort to hang on to third spot and qualify for the $3000 final also pleased Mortlake owner-trainer Paul Herry who purchased the August 2014 daughter of El Grand Senor x Chilly Patch as a pup from breeder Allen Williams at Tarpeena.

Making up the final eight is the Price trained I’m Hearing Ya which was doing her best work at the finish.

Two litters now hold a strong hand in the final with October 2014 whelpings Lektra Lucy, Lektra Ash and Lektra Munster being by Fabregas x Supreme Vision while Hay Miss and Ashdene Lass are from the August 2014 mating of Bekim Bale x Miss Stackhouse.

And following the draw for Sunday’s meeting Stanley fared well with Ashdene Lass and Hay Miss drawing boxes one and eight respectively while Lektra Ash, Lektra Lucy and Lektra Munster will jump from two, three and four.

 

ASHTON’S GOOD RUN CONTINUES

Charlton trainer Kevin Ashton continued on his winning way at Tara Raceway last Friday when Secret Mantra won his first race in 12 months and Saintly Miss took time honours in the heats of the Produce Store Feature Grade Five (512 metres).

This was his second training double in the space of a fortnight after Johnny Jaffa and Carrara Lad had been successful at Tara Raceway’s extra meeting on July 31.

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Jan Neil and Kevin Ashton with Saintly Miss, the quickest Produce Store Feature Grade 5 heat winner at Tara Raceway last Friday.

Saintly Miss’s win was her first at the local track in more than 12 months and only her second this year after winning at Bendigo in late January.

But the black bitch had signalled a return to form the previous week when turning in a good effort to finish third behind Mo Town Roy.

That form subsequently held up in the first heat of the feature as Saintly Miss took over the running down the back straight from Crazy Sprite and then held off a fast finishing Fascinated to win in 30.38 seconds.

The win was the ninth for Saintly Miss, a litter sister to Harry Aztec which Ashton trained to win last year’s Eric Lewis Memorial at Tara Raceway. He’s now looking at breeding with the 3½-year-old daughter of Aston Galilee and Prince’s Faye once her racing days are over.

And there’s certainly not much wrong with the pedigree with a couple of other littermates being Sandown Park and The Meadows winner Hogganaught and Sapphire Crown Group 1 winner Naralee which won 17 races from 34 starts for $145,000 in stakemoney.

Fascinated put in her best run for a while for Penshurst owner-trainer John Cameron when running Saintly Miss to a couple of lengths and qualifying for Sunday’s final.

Purchased as a pup by Cameron from Portland breeder Cass Billington, Fascinated is by Hutmaker out of the ill-fated Spellbound which raced on 115 occasions in three states for 24 wins and 33 minor placings.

Spellbound, which recently lost a battle with cancer, was one of the better greyhounds racing around Tara Raceway in 2013 when trained by Billington who currently is pursuing other interests.

Future Past made it two wins in succession at Tara Raceway for trainer Peter Franklin – but only just.

Jumping from box six in the second heat, Future Past took over the running from Cheyenne Black turning for home and then in a desperate finish held out the fast finishing Homer and Julie’s Love in 30.53 seconds.

The final heat was run in driving rain with Dean Fennell’s Stampy Longnose weathering the storm after getting the better of litter sister Smirnoff Lass and charging home for a four length win in 30.49 seconds.

Fear Helvetia, originally a reserve for the final after running third behind Stampy Longnose, gained a start when Future Past was scratched prior to the draw on Tuesday and now looks well placed in box one for Coleraine owner-trainer Robert Wombwell.