Wednesday, March 27, 2019
It was a good day for Parwan greyhound trainer Paul Abela after Cavatron and Aston It Is both won their way into the final of Sunday’s Group Listed Fairthorne Forestry Mount Gambier Cup (512 metres) at Tara Raceway.
Little wonder Abela, a full-time trainer for 20 years, was singing the praises of the Mount Gambier track. And he was also singing the praises of Cavatron’s owner, Dean Baker of Shepparton.
“Dean’s one of those owners who can always take a positive out of any of his dogs’ races. Only recently Cavatron disappointed in a race at Sandown Park and I wasn’t overly happy,” Abela said.
“He soon found a positive with the run, though, and I thought then, if only there were more owners like him.”
In Abela’s kennels since 15 months of age, Cavatron is by Dyna Tron out of She’s Our Caviar, a winner of nine races and $14,000 in stakemoney.
It’s turned out to be a more than handy litter with Cavatron having now won 12 races for $36,000 in stakes while Baker also races litter brother Startron who has won 23 races and $56,000 in stakemoney.
So handy, in fact, that in mid-2018 Baker mated She’s Our Caviar for a second time to Dyna Tron with the resultant litter producing three dogs and three bitches.
And so passionate is the owner about his greyhounds that members of the Baker family will be making the trip to Mount Gambier this weekend to cheer on Cavatron in the Mount Gambier Cup.
Abela has also developed a solid working relationship with leading owner Ray Borda who races Aston It Is, the pair previously combining to enjoy plenty of success with Aston Dinnigan, a winner of 16 races and $52,000 in stakemoney prior to whelping two dogs and three in February this year to US sire KC And All.
By Turanza Bale out of Sweet It Is, Aston It Is is a winner of 18 races and $58,000, Abela full of praise for the dog that 12 months ago looked unlikely to race again after being sidelined with injury for five months.
“To be honest, he did a terrific job to come back. And I’m expecting a big run from him on Sunday. Actually, I reckon he’s ready to jump out of the ground,” he said.
Another first-time visitor to sing the praises of Tara Raceway was Lara trainer Rob Camilleri, even more so after Slingshot Hammer’s best of day 29.45 seconds Mount Gambier Cup heat win.
“This is a terrific place you’ve got here and the people are so friendly. I don’t think it will take much to get me back here again,” said Camilleri who was accompanied by fellow trainer Deborah Coleman.
Camilleri, involved in the sport for 45 years, said the Coleman-owned Slingshot Hammer, purchased after running second in the Group 3 Queensland Cup (600 m) in January, generally goes better second up at a track.
The son of Fernando Bale x Little Hammer goes into Sunday’s Group Listed final from box one as an odds-on favourite and as the winner of a Group 3 Cranbourne Classic as well as reaching the finals of a Silver Chief, Richmond Derby and Geelong Cup – all Group 2 events.
The pair is also enjoying success with She’s Gifted, a winner of 17 races from 36 starts for stakemoney of $175,000.
And leading Adelaide owners Tim Aloisi and Matt Lehman will be hoping the Tony Rasmussen trained Waterloo Monelli can give them their first Mount Gambier Cup success.
Involved in the sport for seven years, Aloisi and Lehman – family friends – currently own something like 14 greyhounds, Waterloo Monelli purchased from WA two months ago.
“Having tried to win the Mount Gambier Cup before, we knew it was always going to be hard for him first-up on the track but he got around safely when running second in his heat and should now be better for the run when he lines up in the final on Sunday,” Aloisi said.
Rasmussen, who has never won a Mount Gambier Cup, will be missing on Sunday as he is currently taking a break, Aloisi bringing a team of four down for the meeting.
Aloisi and Lehman will be chasing their second Group success on Sunday after Honcho Monelli was successful in last November’s Group 3 Gawler Gold Cup.