Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club

Tara Raceway, Lake Terrace East, Mount Gambier, SA

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Banjo Fozz set to return to winner’s circle

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Four-year-old grade four greyhound Banjo Fozz, trained at Tarpeena by Dita Mitchell, looks well placed to return to the winner’s circle at Tara Raceway on Thursday when she contests the Klaassens Contractors Grade 4/5 Mixed Stake (600 metres).

A solid second last week behind Perseverance over 600 metres at Tara Raceway, Banjo Fozz’s last win was back in November when she defeated Spinning Jakit in a Mixed 4/5 (600 m) at the local track for owner-trainer David Brodhurst.

With the border currently closed and Brodhurst residing two kilometres east on the Victorian side at Serviceton he opted to place the black bitch with an SA trainer in order that she could continue to race in Mount Gambier.

Banjo Fozz looks a top chance in Thursday’s Klaassens Contractors Mixed Stake (600 m) at Tara Raceway.

Mitchell has now raced Banjo Fozz on four occasions with her past three starts resulting in minor placings behind pretty handy local performers Rock It Fernando and Vossy over 512 metres before stepping up in distance last week.

Tipping the scales at a sizeable 31 kilograms and picked up in June last year by Brodhurst for $600 after running second in a maiden at a time-graded meeting at Tara Raceway, she’s now won five races.

Banjo Fozz is by Banjo Boy out of Fire Stricker, a winner of only one race (at Shepparton) from 13 starts, but beautifully bred, being by Bombastic Shiraz out of 21 race winner Tasman Queen who collected $230,000 in stakemoney.

Fire Stricker’s litter also includes handy performers Blur, a winner up the straight at Healesville today, Tat James and Tat Warby who is also racing on Thursday, at Shepparton.

Hardest for Banjo Fozz to beat is probably the Clint Alleway owned Our Airman, trained at Lewiston by Kevin Bewley who is back again with another team of nine after a win last week with Crisis Time, also raced by Alleway.

By the little-known Our Toyman, who has sired nine litters, Our Airman has won only two races – at Ballarat and Bendigo – from 57 starts but has run 19 minor placings. A repeat of a 35.53 seconds effort when finishing third at Angle Park over 600 metres in March should see him right in the mix.

Meanwhile, Moorak owner Robert Chuck reports that littermates Galactic Athena and Galactic Zeus have been transferred to the Lara kennels of David Geall, best known in recent times for his success with Up Hill Jill (38 wins, $884,000) and My Redeemer (25 wins, $682,000).

By Paddy Whacker x Galactic Rumball, Galactic Athena, who won the 2019 Mount Gambier Cup, strung together four wins for trainer Steve Bartholomew at Tara Raceway during April while Galactic Zeus has raced only once for a 22.91 seconds 400 metre win at Tara Raceway in July last year.

Galactic Mojo, another member of the talented litter, returns to racing on Thursday after a five-month injury break, having last won at Tara Raceway over 512 metres back in November last year when defeating litter brother Galactic Titan in 29.94 seconds.

Galactic Zeus (pictured) and Galactic Athena are now in the Lara kennels of David Geall.

The brindle bitch, a winner of five races from 13 starts, takes on a fair sort of field in her comeback in the Trackside Meats Open Stake (400 m) – Squishy Pea and Keen One looking two of the hardest to beat.

Chuck had previously been associated with Geall back in 2014-2015 when he trained Galactic Viper for him – the son of Velocette x Magic Elite winning five races on Victorian tracks as well as the 2015 Group 3 Howard Ashton (515 m) at Angle Park.

And how about the effort of New Zealand trainer Lisa Cole and her team at Hatrick last week after Bigtime Bee won the 12th race and resulted in them training the card – the first time the feat has been achieved.

The night also saw the kennel, which had 52 runners, bring up its 700th winner for the current season.

This is obviously some sort of operation with 600 greyhounds – pups, break-ins, racing dogs, breeding stock and retirees – on the property. And with 100 pups recently broken-in, it’s a fair bet the winners will continue to come.

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