Thursday, September 22, 2016
It’s been an interesting journey for Allendale East greyhound Thanks Captain since defeating Stampy Longnose in a maiden 512 metre event at Tara Raceway some 14 months ago.
Owned at Happy Valley by Ross Schurgott, who purchased the son of Fabregas and Zadar Belle as a pup, the David Peckham trained black dog has since gone on to win a further five races, all in good style.
His latest win was last Sunday at Tara Raceway when he took the lead down the back in the Gordon Refrigeration Feature Grade Five final (512 m) and then held off strong finishes from He’s Innocent and Fascinated.
The win was a far cry from late last year when connections opted to place him in Adelaide for a stint of racing and where at Gawler he failed to pass a very generous time standard in a 531 metre qualifying trial.
Needless to say, Thanks Captain, often referred to as the “reluctant racer” because of a general attitude problem at times when it came to anything remotely connected to greyhound racing, quickly found himself back in Mount Gambier.
Later, a win over smart type Ireland’s Oyster in April at odds of $35 had Schurgott and Peckham cautiously hoping that perhaps Thanks Captain might have turned the corner.
Maybe he had, but they found themselves having to wait another four months after he sustained an injury.
Thanks Captain, which resumed at the end of August with a 400 metre win, continues to race with what appears to be renewed vigour after a couple of close seconds preceded the feature grade five win in 30.36 seconds.
The Captain will now take on a classy field in Sunday’s Klaassens Contractors Mixed Stake (512 m). This is the sort of race that should give his owner and trainer a fair idea of whether he’s really come in from the cold.
And whether he’s shrugged off that reluctant racer tag.