Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club

Tara Raceway, Lake Terrace East, Mount Gambier, SA

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The Mount Gambier Cup: ‘It’s always a good race to be in’

Local greyhounds will be well represented in Sunday’s Group 3 Carlin & Gazzard Mount Gambier Cup (512 metres) at Tara Raceway.

This follows the running of seven heats last Sunday when Mr. Anderson, Aston Ziebell, Lochinvar Cahill and Sister Roberta were all impressive heat winners.

Zari and Jason Newman, Melissa Freitag and baby Elaine, and Mark Johnson pictured with Mr. Anderson, the fastest of the seven Mount Gambier Cup heat winners.

And joining them will be Victorian-based runners Yahiro Bale and Titan Bale, trained at Avalon by Daniel Gibbons, and Wharfie who is in the kennels of Shane Richer from Boolarra. Making up the final field will be McLaren Vale-based trainer Gavin Harris’s Springvale Rex.

Actually, Gibbons is also currently training Mr. Anderson for local owners Jason Newman and Melissa Freitag, of Moorak, who race the son of Bernardo and Dusseldorp in partnership with Adelaide-based Derek Anderson.

The red fawn dog has certainly come a fair way since his first-up maiden win over 305 metres at Mount Gambier back in June last year.

While he went into his cup heat with no real 512 metre form to speak of, Newman said the fact that Mr. Anderson won hadn’t been the real surprise of the race.

“With his early pace I always thought he was a strong chance of leading and hopefully hanging on. But what amazed me was the time he ran – 29.41 seconds, that was unbelievable. And box seven in the final holds no fears for me.

“When we gave him to Danny to train we were hoping that he might be able to take Mr. Anderson to another level. He’s certainly done that – and a bit more,” said Newman, who trained Departure Gate, last year’s Mount Gambier Cup winner.

Allendale East trainer David Peckham, who has Aston Ziebell and Lochinvar Cahill engaged in the cup final in boxes two and one respectively, bred Mr. Anderson in partnership with Newman.

Later, they shared the litter, Newman also taking possession of Dusseldorp who last month whelped four bitches by Sentenced, a Group-winning son of Jury and Velocity Spice.

Aston Ziebell (No. 1) defeats Gangsta Paradise in the third heat of the Mount Gambier Cup.

Aston Ziebell, who held on in a desperate finish to defeat Gangsta Paradise by a nose in 29.66 seconds, found his way over to Mount Gambier and the finish-on lure in June last year after losing confidence on Victorian tracks.

Peckham’s association with the Mount Gambier Cup goes back to 1989 when he reached the final – won by the Alan Evans trained Mr. Chatters – with his first greyhound Canunda Miss.

He’s still chasing his first Mount Gambier Cup although in 1994 there was family success when Argyle Sally was successful for his father, Allen, who in 1998 was made a life member of the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing Club.

Lochinvar Cahill, who is raced by Peckham in partnership with local sporting identity Kevin “KD” Douglas, led all the way in the fifth heat when defeating Aston Marvel by two lengths in a personal best 29.53 seconds.

“Just having a dog in the Mount Gambier Cup final is fantastic,” said Douglas who conceded that even from box one everything would have to go right in the run for Lochinvar Cahill – the part-owner’s first cup runner.

By Fernando Bale out of Tears Some, Lochinvar Cahill was purchased in June last year from NSW breeder Kevin Gordon who answered Douglas’s call for something better than average to race on SA tracks.

Lochinvar Cahill’s part-owner and trainer David Peckham with fellow part-owner Kevin “KD” Douglas who is looking forward to watching his first Mount Gambier Cup finalist race on Sunday afternoon.

“All up he’s won 10 races. His record at Tara Raceway now stands at eight wins and three placings from 11 starts with much of this success, I believe, due to David’s patience with the dog early in the piece,” Douglas said.

Compton trainer Tracie Price reckons he was born into the sport – his father “Shirty” introducing him to greyhound racing at a young age.

And he must have picked up something along the way because there aren’t too many races he hasn’t won at Tara Raceway.

However, while the Mount Gambier Cup continues to elude him he’s certainly upbeat about his chances on Sunday with the talented Sister Roberta who is raced by Matt Trzeciak’s Toot Toot Syndicate.

Come the final heat and box seven perhaps could have been a stumbling block for the daughter of Barcia Bale and the US-bred Phantom Mime. But she was in front going around the first turn and never headed when defeating Piscopo Bale by three-quarters of a length in 29.66 seconds.

While Sister Roberta was a quick 29.39 seconds recent winner at Tara Raceway from box one Price believes with any sort of luck she will still be able to find the front again from out wide.

Sister Roberta races into the final when defeating Piscopo Bale in the last of the seven Mount Gambier Cup heats.

“Look, I’m not altogether unhappy with box eight. With a bit of luck and with Mr. Anderson next to her on the inside I reckon she’s some chance of getting a cart across and putting herself in the race,” he said.

“Besides – win, lose or draw – the Mount Gambier Cup is always a good race to be in.”

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