Monday, February 12, 2018
Four weeks out and Toolong greyhound trainer Phil Lenehan’s Mount Gambier Cup prospects have been considerably boosted by the return to the kennels of the enigmatic Lektra Forrest and by the performance of his litter brother Lektra Stomp at Tara Raceway on Sunday afternoon.
By Walk Hard x Lektra Angie, Lektra Stomp, an odds-on favourite when narrowly beaten the previous week by Odd Boots at Tara Raceway, lined up from box eight in a smart Open field as a $3.30 chance behind a couple of other cup prospects in Zuma Creek and Hutch who shared favouritism at $3.10.
In direct contrast to last week, the white and black dog quickly found the front in the 512 metre event and was never ever going to be beaten, eventually running out a 7½ length winner over Odd Boots with a further three lengths back to Zuma Creek.
But it was the winning time that told the story – 29.57 seconds. This is the third-fastest time ever recorded at the track, bettered only by the Jeff Guy trained Brazen Bomber’s then-record run of 29.55 seconds on June 11 and then Mojito Mayhem’s current record of 29.52 seconds recorded a week later for Peter Franklin.
The win completed a good weekend for Lenehan at Tara Raceway after Bluey Moran and Lektra Menzel had been successful at Friday’s time-graded meeting.
Lektra Forrest, a fair lump of a dog that tips the scales at around the 36 kilogram mark, has raced on 29 occasions on Victorian tracks for seven wins and $27,000 in prizemoney, running times at The Meadows, Sandown Park and Ballarat that would make him more than competitive at Tara Raceway.
Mortlake trainer Peter Crawley confirmed that Zuma Creek, a son of Fabregas x Skye Creek, and a 29.66 seconds winner at Tara Raceway on Australia Day, was being set for the cup.
And Crawley could also have a strong second-string in the form of Bomber Creek, a younger half-brother (by Magic Sprite) to Zuma Creek – an impressive 29.97 seconds maiden winner on Australia Day and looking even better on Sunday in the Williams Crane Hire Stake (512 m) with a 9¼ lengths win in 29.88 seconds.
Also on the cup trail is Blazing Moment who wrapped up another big day for Compton trainer Tracie Price after Cindy La Moment, Baz’s Moment and Dynamite Danger had been successful earlier in the day and taken his winning tally for the year to 18.
Blazing Moment, a 37 kilogram son of Bekim Bale x Lucy’s Moment, is slowly but surely finding form again after major surgery forced him off the scene for much of the latter part of 2017.
A Darwin Cup finalist in early August last year, Blazing Moment was having his first run over 512 metres in close to six months in the first heat of Sunday’s Metal Worx Feature Grade 5.
And in a deceptive finish, the big black dog – in an effort that should top him off nicely for this Sunday’s final – was able to get the decision by a nose over the Jamie Quinlivian trained Bessie Belle in 30.05 seconds.