Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Lektra Ash and Ponting’s Nail, who made light work of the heavy conditions in last Sunday’s South Eastern Hotel Feature Grade Five Feature heats (512 metres), appear to have drawn unfavourably in Sunday’s $2100 final at Tara Raceway.
Lektra Ash, trained at Tarpeena by David Williams who continues to hold down a spot in the top 10 trainers’ list, was an emphatic heat one winner from box five after finding the front down the back before careering away to an 8¾ length win over reserve runner Travel Ticket in 30.94 seconds.
And Ponting’s Nail, trained at Woolsthorpe by Nifty Lenehan for his sister-in-law Susan Lenehan, was equally as impressive, also from box five, when taking over the running from Sweeney Miss off the back and then finishing strongly to defeat the early leader by 2½ lengths in 30.90 seconds.
For Lektra Ash, it was his third win at Tara Raceway after Allen Williams had purchased him from owner-trainer Phil Lenehan prior to the running of last year’s Winter Classic final in which the black dog finished third to his litter brother Lektra Munster.
Ponting’s Nail’s win broke a long run of outs with the fawn dog last successful at Sandown Park over 595 metres back in June last year.
The heat winners actually emanated from Toolong where they were bred by Phil Lenehan – Lektra Ash, an October 2014 son of Fabregas x Supreme Vision and Ponting’s Nail a September 2013 son of Nitro Burst x Lektra Angel – with Kikiku being the grand-dam of both greyhounds.
Both Lektra Ash and Ponting’s Nail use plenty of the track and that probably worked in their favour last Sunday given the conditions. But the pair has drawn boxes two and three respectively in the final and will need luck early as they look to find the outside running.
Lektra Ash, however, has won from box one although Ponting’s Nail, a winner of close to $30,000, is yet to win from any closer than box four.
Adding further interest to the final will be the inclusion of third and fourth placegetters from the heats – Saint Elite, Maximum Bella, Goldie’s Run and Cilla Brown – with Saint Elite set to get a clear run early from box one and Goldie’s Run likely to be prominent from box eight.
EASTER GIFT ATTRACTS TOP LINE-UP
Multiple Tara Raceway cups winner Mojito Mayhem heads a top line-up taking on Sunday’s Easter Gift (512 m).
A winner of two Anniversary Cups and a Mount Gambier Cup, Mojito Mayhem, who has drawn box seven, last raced at Tara Raceway when running a great third behind Fabregal in this year’s Mount Gambier Cup.
The Peter Franklin trained son of Fear Zafonic x Graceful Amy last week competed at Ballarat (450 m) where he was a good three length third prior to running a 5½ length fourth over 450 metres won in a quick 25.23 seconds at Warrnambool on Tuesday.
SA Country Cup winner Berry Bling, after a couple of more than handy 600 metre efforts for Nicole Stanley, drops back in distance and from box two looks well suited as does the David Peckham trained Thanks Captain out in box eight.
The race includes two Christmas Cup winners – Fear The Rascal (2015) and Glenville Jester who was successful last year.
Fear The Rascal, trained by Tracie Price, continues to race well having defeated Fiorelli Rose over 512 metres last month. Richard Clayfield, however, will be hoping Glenville Jester returns from a break with renewed vigour after being well beaten at his past three starts.
Cryer’s Jack, back among the winners late last month after six months in the wilderness, continues to race well and trainer Tom Cryer will be hoping for a repeat of last year when litter brother Cryer’s Fred was successful in the Easter Gift.
Adding further interest to the race is the Peckham trained box three runner Blitz And Bolt, chasing his third successive win and looking to further increase his Greyhound of the Year lead while Cap Abbott’s red runner Blazin’ Vicky, boasting a personal best time of 29.98 seconds, is well boxed.
FOUR IN A ROW . . . THAT’S THE SPIRIT!
It might only be a grade five 400 metre affair, but the Robert Chuck owned and trained Galactic Spirit will add plenty of interest to Sunday’s race three, the Greyhound-Data.com Stake.
She’s the young bitch by Swift Fancy x Which Class that has won her only three starts – all over 400 metres – and will attempt to continue on her winning way when jumping from box seven.
They don’t win four in a row too often. In fact, Mojito Mayhem was the last greyhound to achieve that feat at Tara Raceway and that was more than 12 months ago.
Galactic Spirit boxed brilliantly in her three all the way wins but will face a class rise on Sunday when taking on a field of seasoned chasers including last weekend winners Dimora Bekim and Cullquin Nikki and noted speedster Raz’s Girl.