Monday, November 7, 2016
The Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club will be well-represented in the forthcoming SA Country Cup final at Strathalbyn after Berry Bling and Fear The Rascal won their respective 512 metre heats at Tara Raceway last Friday.
An odds-on chance after the scratching of Cryer’s Fred, Berry Bling quickly found the front from box four and from then on never looked like being beaten, eventually running out an eight length winner over Spotted Gunn in 30.01 seconds – a top time considering the windy conditions.
By Lochinvar Marlow x Lady Bling, Berry Bling has now won six races from 25 starts for Portland owner-trainer Nicole Stanley who currently sits in second spot behind Tracie Price in the Leading Trainers’ award.
The Country Cup final will be run over 536 metres in conjunction with the Strathalbyn Cup on the night of Sunday, November 20 and Stanley intends giving Berry Bling every chance in the $7375 event.
“I’ve never raced at Strathalbyn and she’ll certainly need to have a look at what is apparently a tricky track so she’ll have a trial there prior to Sunday week,” Stanley said after Berry Bling’s stunning heat win.
The Price-trained Fear The Rascal, ideally drawn in box eight in the second heat, was also an odds-on chance and after finding the front going into the back straight ran out a 4¼ length winner over Fiorelli Rose in a best of day 29.95 seconds.
A winner of nine races at Tara Raceway this year, the white and blue son of Fear Zafonic x Shannah’s Star is owned locally by the breeder Don Nunn.
Fear The Rascal, which has raced at Strathalbyn on only once occasion for a fourth placing over 416 metres in late September, may race at the track as a lead-up to the final.
“I haven’t really decided what I’ll do with him yet but at this stage I reckon a race start there for prizemoney is probably more advantageous than a trial,” the Compton-based trainer said.
Price will now have two representatives in the Country Cup final after Lyon Rose defeated the Michael Stewart trained Scottish Thistle in the Strathalbyn heat on October 21.
And with Gustavo Fring running second to He’s Innocent in Port Augusta’s heat over 503 metres last week, the Palmer-based Stewart will also have two representatives.
Trained at Lewiston by Don Turner, He’s Innocent ran a 1½-length second over 512 metres at Tara Raceway on September 23 to Berry Bling in a best of day 29.99 seconds.
Gawler will be represented by the Damien Bates trained Memory Assassin and Jokowi which is trained by Ken Trowbridge.