Thursday, December 7, 2017
The clash of Lektra Stomp and Zuma Creek, two of the fastest greyhounds to have raced at Tara Raceway this year, will be one of the highlights of Sunday’s meeting when they contest the second of two six-dog heats of the Williams Crane Hire Christmas Cup (512 metres).
From the Toolong kennels of Team Lenehan, Lektra Stomp, a member of the successful July 2015 Walk Hard x Lektra Angie litter, comes into the race after a 29.67 seconds run in August and a brilliant Newman McDonnell Memorial win last month.
By Fabregas x Skye Creek, Zuma Creek, a 29.69 seconds Tara Raceway winner in October, has an impressive record of six wins and five minor placings from 13 starts at the track for owner Danny Kelly and Mortlake trainer Peter Crawley.
Lektra Stomp and Zuma Creek, who have drawn boxes two and five respectively, also look to be well-suited by the smaller field.
Adding further interest to this heat will be box one runner Solitary Lad, owned by Ann Sinnott and trained at Glenroy by Richard Clayfield who won last year’s Christmas Cup with Glenville Jester.
A son of Lonesome Cry x Up And Away, Solitary Lad, who used the inside draw to advantage last week when defeating Shannah’s Might in a best of day 30.13 seconds, will be chasing his third feature race this year after success in the John Reid Memorial and the Destini Fireball Winter Classic.
Fiorelli Rose, a serious contender for this year’s Greyhound of the Year, won over 400 metres last week but looks better suited on Sunday over 512 metres for Portland trainer Nicole Stanley who was runner-up in last year’s Christmas Cup with 2016 Greyhound of the Year Old Jock.
Winner of this year’s Anniversary Cup in July, Fiorelli Rose looks well drawn in box two in heat one of the Christmas Cup and comes into the race having beaten Zuma Creek three starts ago.
Portland trainer Robert Halliday, off the scene for several months, bounced back with a time-graded double at Tara Raceway last Friday with box one runners Homer and Brinza.
Homer, while stepping up in grade, will be well suited by box one again in heat one of the cup and will also be well suited by the smaller field.
The 4½-year-old Shannah’s Might, trained at Compton by Tracie Price for local owner Don Nunn, has been placed at his past five starts and did beat Fiorelli Rose over 512 metres back in September.
By Fear Zafonic x Shannah’s Star, Shannah’s Might’s litter brother, Fear The Rascal, won the Christmas Cup for the same connections two years ago. In fact, Price will be chasing his third cup, Who’s Doing What successful in race record time in 2014.
Sunday’s meeting will kick off with two heats of the Milla Laddrak-sponsored Royal Fashion Maiden (512 m), first run in 2007 when won by Leeor Trev, trained at Glencoe by Dean Fennell who won the event again in 2014 with Pumped Rule.
The Royal Fashion has unearthed a few smart types, not the least being the Price-trained Moorak Hope (2012), Cap Abbott’s Manila Express (2013) and Peter Hubbard’s Cairnlea Lewis (2015).
Interesting runner in the first heat is first starter Wendouree Witch, who has drawn box eight for Heathmere trainer Garry Marshman.
Whelped in December 2015, the white and black bitch is bred to go fast, being by Keybow out of Star Doll, a former 400 metre track record holder at Tara Raceway before going on to win over the middle distance at Sandown Park and The Meadows.
And in the second heat, January 2016 whelping Shine On Shannah, by Fabregas x Shannah’s Star, and raced in the same interests as Shannah’s Might, will make her debut from box six.
Finals of the Christmas Cup, the Royal Fashion Maiden and the Christmas Challenge (400 m) will be run at Sunday week’s Christmas meeting (December 17), along with one-off finals of the Fashion D’Or Ladies Bracelet for grade five bitches (600 m) and the Back To Distance Racing (732 m).