Without taking anything away from Giant Flash’s fifth trainer, Tracie Price of Compton, maybe Mount Gambier’s finish-on-lure track has also assisted in turning around the fortunes of yet another greyhound.
While it’s early days yet, the black dog certainly signalled his intentions at a recent Tara Raceway trial morning when clocking 29.50 seconds over the 512 metre journey.
Lining up in yesterday’s Trackside Meats 1-4 Wins Stake (512 m), Giant’s Flash was having his first start at the track for Price who took over his training earlier in the month.
Actually, it was only his fifth start since winning at Ballarat in June last year. Shortly after, he copped a 90 days suspension for failing to chase at Bendigo before finding his way to NSW where he had a couple of runs at Dapto.
Not surprisingly, that 29.50 seconds trial run hadn’t been missed. Lining up from box five at yesterday’s time-graded meeting as a $1.40 chance, Giant’s Flash overcame a tardy start to take the lead going out of the first turn.
And from then on it was simply a matter of how far – 14 lengths over Rose Bay on the line – in track record time of 29.19 seconds.
The run was 1½ lengths quicker than the Price-trained Rockoon’s previous record of 29.28 seconds which had been established on July 1, 2018 when he defeated Cryer’s Plugger.
By Banjo Boy, Giant’s Flash is out of Navada Flame, a winner of only three races at the Gardens and Gosford but boasting a strong pedigree through Bombastic Shiraz and Navada Sunrise (a winner of 22 races and $84,000 in stakemoney).
At the track yesterday was Laharum owner Garry Harding who races the record-breaker in partnership with Garry Comans of NSW. He explained how it all came together.
“It all goes back to a phone call I received in mid-2018 from Gary Oldfield, a former NSW GBOTA board member who wanted to know if I would be interested in a brood bitch named Navada Flame.
“He believed he was too old to breed another litter but he had her first litter and reckoned that they were flying. All he wanted was a pup from the second litter.
“Around about the same time another mate of mine in Garry Comans, also from NSW, was looking for a bitch to breed with. He subsequently agreed to my suggestion that we share any litters Navada Flame may have.
“In early 2019 she was mated to Banjo Boy. We entrusted the whelping to John Caulfield of Pyramid Hill and I have to say that by the time her six 5-month-old pups arrived at Laharum for rearing they were looking outstanding.”
Fast forward to breaking-in and Harding receives the phone call that all owners are hoping for.
“We had them broken-in at Red Cliffs by Rod Millington who rang to inform me that one of the litter looked to be an outstanding prospect. However, it wasn’t Giant’s Flash.
“No, it was another black dog that later raced as Banjo Bert. We gave him to Rodney Clark of Echuca to train but after two seconds he broke down and was returned to Laharum.
“Rodney also trained Giant’s Flash who won his first two races at Horsham before turning his head and coming back to my kennels.
“I then won a couple with him before he digressed once again. That’s when he found his way to NSW before Tracie agreed to have a go with him.”
Another member of the litter, Minnie Banjo, won three races in Victoria last year in between three suspensions for failing to chase.
“I also wanted to get her over to Tracie so that she could take advantage of the finish-on-lure. She’s certainly improved out of sight since racing at Mount Gambier where she’s won four races on the trot as well as one at Angle Park,” Harding said.
All told, it was a good day for Harding who most certainly was pumping air in more ways than one.
Chasing his first win since August last year, the Laharum owned and trained Pumping Air was only fairly away from box one in the Greg Martlew Autos 1-4 Wins Stake (400 m).
But the son of Dyna Double One x Stylish Fringe unleashed a powerful burst late in the race to defeat Our Frankie by half a length in 23.71 seconds.
Harding said the brindle dog had joined his kennels in July last year after his previous trainer had found him too hard to handle.
“Look, he’s nothing spectacular, but it was nice to win another race with him.”