Rain washes away dog racing

David Braithwaite

SUNDAY’S Sale greyhounds meeting was abandoned after five races because of the effect of rain on the track.

Two races had already been delayed before stewards abandoned the meeting at 4pm.

Before race six, stewards inspected the track because of heavy rain and concerns for the surface.

Stewards were told by the track curator that 20 millimetres of rain had fallen over the previous hour, with remedial works likely to take some time.

The meeting was to have included the Arthur Hay Memorial final and Don and Valda Clavarino memorials.

Two finals did go ahead.

The Tom Lanigan Memorial final, a 440 metre mixed grade six and seven race, was won by Ballymac Vicar for Kilmany trainer Des McPhie.

The dog won his third race from four starts in 25.08 seconds, more than three seconds ahead of Bromley, trained by Jennifer Gill at Woodside. West Of Westeros finished third for Boisdale trainer Dawn Johnston.

Why Not Colby, trained at Devon Meadows by Greg Carter, won the Toby Wyeth Memorial final – a 440m grade five – and collected a winner’s purse of $2650.

Why Not Colby won what turned out to be the final race of the day in 26.03s, ahead of Dawn Johnston’s Baileys On Ice, who led into the straight.

Most of the field was involved in collisions or checking entering the home straight.

Baileys On Ice turned his head outwards entering the home straight, and was charged by stewards with failing to pursue the lure with due commitment.

After Johnston pleaded guilty, the dog must perform a satisfactory trial before racing again.

The dog was also stood down for 14 days after a post race vet examination found he had a left monkey muscle injury.

Heats of the 440m maiden series began the day, with the final to be held during this Sunday’s meeting.

The first heat was won by Dr Mick, trained by Judith McMahon at Darriman, in 25.19s. Dr Mick was a clear winner, finishing 4.36s ahead of Reality Lad, trained by David Condon at Devon Meadows, while Drakari came third for Johnston.

In heat two, Suzie Rose, trained at Rosedale by Jeff Chignell, sprinted strongly to the post to win in 25.49s. Aston Frigate was second for Gary McMillan at Nambrok, while early leader Dr Ted, trained by Bill McMahon at Darriman, finished third.

Race four, a 520m mixed grade six and seven, was won by Lethal Hawk, trained by David Kerr at Warragul South, in 30.34s after holding off a challenge from Jayville Tahlia, prepared by Todd Chatwin at Johnsonville.

Swift Intention, trained by Lyn Smith at Nambrok, came third after checking off Lethal Hawk on the home turn.

TRAINER Bill McMahon returned to Darriman from Friday night’s meeting at Sale with a winning double.

Following a hat-trick of third placings, Sweet Demi won race five, a 520m grade five, in 29.46s.

Six seconds behind was Sad But True, trained by Brian Alford at Yarram, with Whodat Dare third for Heyfield trainer Davide Fasoli.

McMahon’s dogs occupied the first three placings in race 10, a 440m grade six.

Despite being last out of the boxes, Dr Tucker was quick enough to open up a solid lead on his way to claiming a third win from five starts in 24.72s, nearly 10s clear of Marsha. Timmy finished third to complete the trifecta for McMahon.

The night began with Sandy Gem winning a 440m maiden for Rosedale trainer John Connor.

In an impressive debut, Sandy Gem raced clear on the back straight on his way to winning in 26.95s, 6.5s clear of Battle Symphony, trained by Matt Clark at Briagolong.

Another impressive performance also secured victory in race two, another 440m maiden, with Kobe, trained by Jennifer Gill at Woodside, winning in 26.16s, 6.4s ahead of Call Me Raine, trained by Kate Gorman at Tanjil South, who claimed second just ahead of Harper’s Girl for Tinamba trainer Robert Bean.

Race three, a 440m grade seven, was won by Suspense Rules, trained by Alford, in 25.21s.

Speed Demon, trained at Woodside by Margaret Read, finished second with Madalia Phoebe third for Susan Northway at Heyfield.

Minter Fly, trained by Robert Reinke at Johnsonville, won race four, a 520m event restricted to dogs with one to three wins, in 29.51s, ahead of Incognito, trained by Lyn Smith at Nambrok, and Out Katie Rose, trained by Jeff Chignell at Rosedale.

Impending, trained by Peter Terry at Moe, backed up from winning at Sandown Park the previous Sunday to win race six, a 520m mixed grade four and five, in 29.6s, 6.59s ahead of Leo Rose, trained at Rosedale by Sharon-Lee Chignell.

Stepping won the 650m race eight for Avalon trainer Ben Magri in 37.28s, collecting a winner’s cheque of $3300.

Race nine, the 440m free for all, was won by Stirling Lights, trained by Gorman, in 24.96s.

In second place was Flywheel Bella, trained at Gormandale by Sam Bye, with Ichiban Fairy third for Bev Proctor at Alberton West.

Race 12, a 440m grade five, was won by Just Burning, trained by Aiden Andrews at Kilmany.

Bomber’s Wonder, trained by Geoff Green at Woodside, led for most of the race, but was passed in the final strides by Just Burning, who won in 25.29s. Soda King finished third for Northway.

The final of the GRV Vic Bred 440m grade five series will be held this Sunday, after the heats were held on Friday night.

Untold Solider, trained by David Geall at Lara, led for most of the first heat, winning in 24.99s.

Adonis Sands, trained by Leslie Hughes at Giffard, made up ground in the straight, finishing only 1.26s behind.

Nicholas Rose came third for Jeff Chignell. The second heat was won by Burst The Seam, trained by Glen Burns at Lang Lang, in 24.89s.