Monday, September 18, 2017
Yambuk breeder-owner Ann Sinnott looks to hold a strong hand in the forthcoming Destini Fireball Winter Classic (512 metres) – littermates Sizzle Em Up, Dum Didee Dum, Solitary Lad, Lone Star and Away We Go all making their way through to this Sunday’s final after the running of three heats at Tara Raceway last Sunday afternoon.
By US sire Lonesome Cry out of Up And Away, Sizzle Em Up, Dum Didee Dum and Away We Go are trained for Sinnott by her husband Tom while she has Solitary Lad and Lone Star – who ran the quinella in this year’s John Reid Memorial – placed with Richard Clayfield of Glenroy.
Sizzle Em Up, lining up from box one in heat one of the classic after a recent maiden win over 450 metres at Warrnambool, took the lead going out of the first turn with maiden performer Xtreme Carnage doing the chasing.
Owned at Wagga by Matt Morris and trained at Portland by Brian Weis, the son of Barcia Bale x Xtreme Gretel was an unlucky second at Warrnambool on Thursday night and in Sunday’s race it appeared as if his luck was still out when he knuckled over shortly after the start.
But the 34 kilogram fawn dog quickly picked himself up and finished the race off strongly to grab Sizzle Em Up in the shadows of the post for a neck win in 30.52 seconds – Weis now looking to go one better than in 2015 when he finished second in the Winter Classic with Houdini Spell behind Cee Me Burst.
Lektra Stomp, the short-priced favourite for the opening heat after a brilliant 29.67 seconds win late last month, found trouble on the first turn before hanging on for third spot and grabbing a place in the final as one of the two fastest third placegetters.
And storming home to finish fourth was Over And Away who went extremely close to giving the Sinnott litter six runners in the final.
Dum Didee Dum found the front going out of the first turn in the second heat while Solitary Lad gave chase before railing through on the home turn and grabbing a half head slogging win in 30.47 seconds.
For Clayfield, it was a case of continuing success with Up And Away stock after winning 10 races, including a dead-heat with Boolite Bruiser in the 2015 Iron Dog at Tara Raceway, with the powerful chaser Upset Boy (by Velocette).
So, after the running of the first two classic heats, Tom Sinnott had two finalists, both of which had run desperately close seconds.
That was soon to change though with Away We Go – a quick 29.92 seconds winner last month – lining up from box three in the third heat and, after only being fairly away, splitting the leaders Lone Star and Bungaloo Ruby down the back before running out a 3¼ length winner over Galactic Panther with a further half length back to Lone Star in a best of day 30.15 seconds.
Up And Away, a daughter of Where’s Pedro x On Shore, won 19 races and $184,000 in prizemoney prior to being mated on five occasions, other successful litters being by Dyna Lachlan, Barcia Bale and Premier Fantasy.
With the exception of Lektra Stomp, a July 2015 son of Walk Hard x Lektra Angie, the Winter Classic finalists are at the younger end of the age scale – the Up And Away finalists whelped in November 2015, Extreme Carnage in December 2015 and Galactic Panther a January 2016 son of Milldean Panther x Galactic Rumball.
Galactic Panther, who will be eligible for next February’s Summer Classic (for dogs and bitches whelped on or after January 1, 2016) turned in a terrific effort in Sunday’s heat.
Bred, owned and trained at Moorak by Robert Chuck, the black dog went into the classic with only three starts to his name – two wins and a second, all over 400 metres.
Chuck had trialled Galactic Panther only once over 512 metres leading into Sunday’s race but he finished the race off strongly to clock 30.38 seconds, the second best time of the three heats, while Lone Star’s 30.41 seconds was the third fastest.