Thursday, October 13, 2016
Former Mount Gambier harness racing trainer Ken Feltus made a successful switch to the greyhounds last Sunday at Tara Raceway when Cool Whipp won the 400 metre Metal Worx Stake.
Having his first start in seven months, the 36 kilogram son of Premier Boloney and Barbara Bale chased Evening In Paris into the home straight before finishing powerfully to score by a couple of lengths in 23.35 seconds.
From a training point of view, this was Feltus’s initial venture into the dishlickers and it couldn’t have worked out better with Cool Whipp being his first winner – and his first runner.
Not that greyhound racing is anything new to him as he was successful as an owner last year when the Tracie Price trained My Pal Houston won the John Reid Memorial at Tara Raceway. Also, his son, Scott, trains a large team at Lewiston.
And, realistically, Feltus was probably never going to be content with simply being a greyhound owner.
“I’d been hands-on with the horses for a long time so, yes, I was keen to become further involved with the dogs and train a couple,” he said.
“Needing to pick up a plenty of pointers, I spent six months going out to Compton every morning to help Tracie with the dogs.
“It was certainly a rewarding experience and I’m indebted to him for his assistance in the lead-up to me training my first greyhound.”
Three months ago Feltus started looking for a greyhound to purchase and race with long-time friends Michael and Norma Juda whom he had previously raced pacers with.
A very reasonably priced dog called Cool Whipp, advertised on an internet greyhound site, eventually took his fancy. A December 2013 whelping, he’d won seven races from 32 starts, including four in succession at Mandurah in February this year.
The only downside, though, was that he’d incurred suspensions in Victoria and WA for failing to chase – hence the “very reasonable” price.
“I thought a different environment, along with long walks out in the pines and a finish-on-lure at Tara Raceway might help his attitude. So far, so good,” said Feltus.
Also on track to enjoy the win was Peter Whitehead whom Feltus said had been of great assistance in their bid to get Cool Whipp back among the winners after six previous trainers had moved him on.
RECORD HOLDER RETURNS
Paraphernalia, after a record-breaking 34.99 seconds run over 600 metres at Tara Raceway last week, will add plenty of interest to Sunday’s meeting when he contests the Williams Crane Hire Mixed Stake.
Trained at Horsham by Jeff Guy, Paraphernalia has drawn box two and will clash once again with Stan’s Choice which chased him home last week.
Now back with Portland trainer Brian Weis, Stan’s Choice finished the race off nicely to go down by only two lengths and in doing so running 35.14 seconds – a time that would win most 600 metre races at Tara Raceway.
Guy backed up his running treble at last Sunday’s meeting with a double at Horsham on Tuesday night when Snap Hook (an excellent second to Slipper’s Chance at Tara Raceway) and Kryptonian were successful over 410 metres.
With Paraphernalia, Snap Hook and Kryptonian making the trip over to Mount Gambier on Sunday, together with JB Irrigation Feature Grade Five finalists Brazen Bomber, Frac Geek and McRay, Guy looks set for another big day at the local track.