Monday, December 19, 2016
Glenroy greyhound Glenville Jester’s amazing six weeks of racing continued at Tara Raceway on Sunday afternoon when he defeated a classy field in the Williams Crane Hire Christmas Cup final (512 metres).
This is the dog that last month won a Pathway Stake, then a heat and final of the Newman McDonnell Memorial before running second to Fiorelli Rose and then turning the tables on her prior to a Christmas Cup heat and final success.
Glenville Jester, trained by Richard Clayfield, was always going to be hard to beat after drawing box one although main interest focused on Mojito Mayhem who was attempting to win his third cup at Tara Raceway this year.
But before a large crowd, boosted by the attendance of members of the South Eastern Hotel Social Club, it was the Jester who surprised even his most ardent admirers when flying the lids and leading around the first turn with the Nicole Stanley trained Old Jock in hot pursuit.
Down the back straight the pair had opened up a handy break over the opposition and in the run home it was Glenville Jester who landed his 13th win for the year when defeating Old Jock by two lengths in 30.05 seconds – the second-fastest Christmas Cup winning time after Who’s Doing What’s 29.77 seconds in 2014.
The Robert Duncan trained Abbey’s Hand finished a further 3½ lengths back in third spot. Hers was a tremendous effort with the 4½-year-old veteran making up many lengths in the run home.
Abbey’s Hand just grabbed Mojito Mayhem and the Christmas Cup hoodoo continued for a second year for Peter Franklin’s Mount Gambier Cup and dual Anniversary Cup winner.
For Glenville Jester his 13th win on Sunday was a case of too little, too late as far as the Greyhound of the Year was concerned although he did win more races at Tara Raceway this year than any other greyhound.
But Old Jock’s wonderfully consistent year of 10 wins, 13 seconds and five thirds for 71 points saw him win the award by seven points over Glenville Jester.
Clayfield races the Christmas Cup winner in partnership with his brother Kevin and long-time racing cohort Dale Lewis. For Kevin Clayfield it was something of a mixed day after he took a tumble in the catching pen and later went to hospital for observation.
Lewis, just back in time from an overseas trip with wife Judy to witness the win, has been racing greyhounds with Clayfield since the mid-80s, a time when he was also involved with the South East Greyhound Racing Club as secretary.
By Vapour Whirl, Glenville Jester is out of Glenville Maggie which the pair also raced to win the 2011 Anniversary Cup at Tara Raceway.
“Glenville Maggie was pretty handy,” he said. “But Glenville Jester probably has to be right up there as one of the best we’ve raced together.
“The litter has had only two runners with Rowdy Richard winning at Horsham, Ballarat and Mount Gambier. As such, it’s probably a pity that she was never mated again.”
And Lewis still marvels at the success Glenville Jester has achieved at Tara Raceway.
“You know, if you could see him on our little track at home you wouldn’t think he was the same dog because he shows absolutely no interest in chasing the lure although thankfully he switches on once he hits Mount Gambier.”
The Christmas Cup win was the culmination of a good year for Clayfield who also won 11 races with Slipper’s Shadow and five with his litter sister Slipper’s Chance.
“Yes, it’s been a pretty good year,” he said. “Today’s win was certainly the icing on the cake and one of my biggest wins at the track.”
Clayfield said Glenville Jester would probably now be set for the ClassicBet Mount Gambier Cup (512 m), heats of which will be run at the end of February.
BRACELET FINAL A REAL THRILLER
Sunday’s Milla Laddrak-sponsored Fashion D’Or Ladies Bracelet final for grade five bitches over 400 metres lived up to its hype when Lektra Hutch and Brazen Beau once again matched motors.
The pair had fought out a closely-contested heat last week but the final turned out to be even tighter with Brazen Beau going straight to the front from box two while Lektra Hutch quickly worked into second spot from box eight.
And turning for home it was Lektra Hutch who took the rails opening before gaining the verdict in a slogging finish by a half head in 23.32 seconds – marginally quicker than Pintail’s 23.59 seconds win in last year’s inaugural Bracelet.
Owned and trained by Phil Lenehan, Lektra Hutch is by Vee Man Vane out of Lektra Angie, who won her maiden at Tara Raceway four years ago when defeating Moorak Hope in a very quick 29.93 seconds before going on to win a further eight races on Victorian tracks.
Sunday’s win was the black bitch’s ninth win from 35 starts for more than $14,000 in prizemoney.
Brazen Beau, a daughter of Shakey Jakey and proven producer Scrappy Coco, is turning out to be a more than handy pick-up for Allen and David Williams, having now won and been placed second on three occasions at Tara Raceway.
Filling third spot in the Bracelet was Lenehan’s other runner Lektra Aly who quickly settled in third position and finished the race off nicely to be beaten only 1½ lengths.