Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club

Tara Raceway, Lake Terrace East, Mount Gambier, SA

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McDonnell Memorial heat winners impress

Monday, November 13, 2017

Dominant wins by Greenback Boogie, Noosa Parade and Lektra Stomp in the heats of the time-honoured Newman McDonnell Memorial (512 metres) for grade five greyhounds at Tara Raceway on Sunday have set the scene for a keenly-contested 32nd final this weekend.

Trent Blacker of Ballarat trained his first Tara Raceway winner when Greenback Boogie won a heat of the McDonnell Memorial.

Greenback Boogie, raced by the Parko’s Syndicate which is managed by well-known Victorian breeder and owner Brian Parkinson, was having his first look at the track but quickly crossed from box six to lead the field out of the first turn.

And after a brief challenge from Dream Edition, the black dog strode right away to eventually run out a five length winner over the early challenger – also through to the final – in a pretty tidy 30.15 seconds.

By Barcia Bale x Cosmic Aphrodite, Greenback Boogie is Ballarat trainer Trent Blacker’s first winner at Tara Raceway.

Blacker, whose mother Carolyn formerly successfully trained thoroughbreds at Strathalbyn in SA, became involved in greyhound racing only two years ago after previously working for seven years with leading Victorian thoroughbred trainer Darren Weir.

Blacker took over Greenback Boogie’s training after breaking-in at 16 months of age with the highlight of his involvement so far being the dog’s first two starts 12 months ago.

“He was my first runner so I guess I set my heights fairly high when I nominated him for a maiden series at The Meadows.”

“Anyway, he won his heat and then came out the following week and won the final, giving me a great introduction to the sport,” said Blacker, who when not training greyhounds is sales manager at Ballarat Volkswagen.

Noosa Parade continued his good form at Tara Raceway for Ecklin South trainer Peter Fulton with a win in the second heat of the memorial.

Ecklin South trainer Peter Fulton continued his terrific run at Tara Raceway with Noosa Parade when the son of Collision and Miss Black Fern scored an impressive 6¼ length win in the second heat over fellow qualifiers Two Jobs and Cryer’s Bob.

Owned by the Noosa Fishing Syndicate, Noosa Parade led all the way from box one to take his record at the local track to three wins and two seconds from six starts, with Fulton believing a couple of weeks freshen-up contributed to the dog’s 29.94 seconds best of day time on Sunday.

Lektra Stomp, who ran one of the fastest 512 metre times at Tara Raceway this year when clocking 29.67 seconds at the end of August, found winning form again after five outs when leading all the way to defeat Signal Peak and Rising Girl – all three through to the final – by 5½ lengths and 1¾ lengths respectively in 29.95 seconds.

The win was the middle leg of a treble for the Lenehan family of Toolong and also for the Walk Hard x Lektra Angie litter – Lektra Jenny leading all the way in the Metal Worx Stake (400 m) to defeat litter sister Lektra Miss by 6¼ lengths in 23.31 seconds.

And Lektra Stroll, at his first run on the track, did a good job when chasing Xtreme Notice into the home straight in the Rock’s Retreat Stake (512 m) before finishing the stronger to score by two lengths in a quick 29.97 seconds.

Jamie Quinlivian made the seven-hour trip from Merbein South with a team of four, Signal Peak backing up after a close fourth behind Windmill Haze in last Sunday’s Group 3 Gawler Cup and having the misfortune to run into Lektra Stomp on one of his good days – which to be fair, are pretty good.

Lektra Stroll, Lektra Jenny and Lektra Stomp brought up a treble for the Walk Hard x Lektra Angie litter on Sunday. They are pictured with Amanda Darmanin and Phil Lenehan.

By Cape Hawke x Rustic Reeta, Signal Peak was bred by Quinlivian who has enjoyed tremendous success with the litter, Bear’s Gold winning in fast time at Bendigo last Friday after Glory Fire, from Rustic Reeta’s second litter (by Banjo Boy), had won at Dapto a night earlier.

Rustic Reeta certainly didn’t set the world on fire on the track, winning a couple of races – one at Tara Raceway over 400 metres in 23.90 seconds – and with no real winning form around her.

Quinlivian, who raced her only a couple of times at the end of her career, said that he had liked her conformation but admitted that if he knew back in 2014 what he now knew he may not have bred with her – and that’s something he certainly wouldn’t be keen to reflect on in view of the fact that she’s now produced more than 100 winners.

And while Quinlivian had no luck at Tara Raceway on Sunday, Rustic Reeta did keep the flag flying when Banjo Boy youngster Banjo Bonito won the Laser Electrical Maiden Stake (512 m) for his sire’s owner Andrew Varasdi and Compton trainer Tracie Price who would end the day with a treble.

The Newman McDonnell Memorial, one of the longest-running feature events conducted at Tara Raceway, continues to be sponsored by his family in recognition of his efforts in the early years of greyhound racing in Mount Gambier.

Tara Raceway, the name also carried at the Glenburnie track, was derived from the prefix “Tara” that he used in the naming of many of his racing greyhounds.

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